John Mayer may have garnered accolades from various rappers over the years, but the singer/songwriter is apologizing after encountering a different type of feedback from Twitter followers who have labeled him a racist.
The reaction from the blogosphere stems from an alcohol-fueled interview Mayer did with Playboy magazine contributing editor Rob Tannenbaum for the publication’s March edition.
The entertainer, who "poured glasses of 16-year-old Lagavulin neat" prior to his chat, touched on his status within the black community while addressing opinions from those who deemed him a “douche bag.”
“My two biggest hits are 'Your Body Is a Wonderland' and 'Daughters. If you think those songs are pandering, then you’ll think I am a douche bag,” said Mayer. “It’s like I come on very strong. I am a very...I'm just very. V-E-R-Y. And if you can't handle very, then I'm a douche bag. But I think the world needs a little very. That’s why black people love me.
“Someone asked me the other day, "What does it feel like now to have a hood pass?" the musician continued as he believed the term was “sort of a contradiction in terms, because if you really had a hood pass, you could call it a n****r pass.
"Why are you pulling a punch and calling it a hood pass if you really have a hood pass?," Mayer added. "But I said, "I can’t really have a hood pass. I've never walked into a restaurant, asked for a table and been told, 'We're full.'"
Mayer’s comments are among a string of revelations that surfaced during the Playboy interview. Among those mentioned in the conversation were the vocalist’s ex-flames Jennifer Anniston and Jessica Simpson as well as actresses Holly Robinson Peete and Kerry Washington, both of whom Mayer openly spoke about.
“I always thought Holly Robinson Peete was gorgeous. Every white dude loved Hilary from The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. And Kerry Washington. She’s superhot, and she’s also white-girl crazy,” he said. “Kerry Washington would break your heart like a white girl. Just all of a sudden she’d be like, 'Yeah, I sucked his d**k. Whatever.”
Prior to mentioning Washington and Peete, Tannenbaum brought up Mayer’s popularity with female fans and asked if black women threw themselves at him.
“I don't think I open myself to it. My d**k is sort of like a white supremacist,” the musician stated. “I've got a Benetton heart and a f**kin' David Duke c**k. I'm going to start dating separately from my d**k.”
Throughout his career, Mayer has worked with various artists, many of which who have become fans of his music. Rappers who have collaborated with the singer include Jay-Z, Common and Kanye West, who featured Mayer on “Bittersweet Poetry,” a song from his third album, Graduation.
In addition, to rappers, Mayer also shared the stage with John Legend and Corinne Bailey Rae during a 2007 Grammy Awards performance. The singer also collaborated with fellow vocalist Alicia Keys on the song “Lesson Learned” from her album, As I Am.
During his Playboy interview, Mayer compared challenges he experienced as he offered his definition of what it means to be black.
“What is being black? It’s making the most of your life, not taking a single moment for granted. Taking something that’s seen as a struggle and making it work for you, or you'll die inside,” he stated. “Not to say that my struggle is like the collective struggle of black America. But maybe my struggle is similar to one black dude's.”
With backlash arising from his interview, Mayer apologized for using the n-word Wednesday (Feb. 10) afternoon on Twitter.
"Re: using the 'N word' in an interview: I am sorry that I used the word. And it's such a shame that I did because the point I was trying to make was in the exact opposite spirit of the word itself. It was arrogant of me to think I could intellectualize using it, because I realize that there's no intellectualizing a word that is so emotionally charged," Tweeted the singer, who said it was time to “ stop trying to be so raw in interviews.”
“It started as an attempt to not let the waves of criticism get to me, but it's gotten out of hand and I've created somewhat of a monster. I wanted to be a blues guitar player. And a singer. And a songwriter. Not a shock jock,” Mayer added. “I don't have the stomach for it. Again, because I don't want anyone to think I'm equivocating: I should have never said the word and I will never say it again."