John Mayer Stirs Racist Controversy In ‘Playboy’ Interview

Published: Wednesday 10th Feb 2010 by Trent

Singer John Mayer found himself in a wave of controversy today following his comments in a recent interview with Playboy magazine. Check out the interview, and Mayer’s subsequent ‘apology’ below:

PLAYBOY: If you didn’t know you, would you think you’re a douche bag?

MAYER: It depends on what I picked up. My two biggest hits are “Your Body Is a Wonderland” and “Daughters.” If you think those songs are pandering, then you’ll think I’m a douche bag. 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.

PLAYBOY: Because you’re very?

MAYER: Someone asked me the other day, “What does it feel like now to have a hood pass?” And by the way, it’s sort of a contradiction in terms, because if you really had a hood pass, you could call it a ni**er pass. Why are you pulling a punch and calling it a hood pass if you really have a hood pass? 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.’”

PLAYBOY: It is true; a lot of rappers love you. You recorded with Common and Kanye West, played live with Jay-Z.

MAYER: 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. 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.

PLAYBOY: Do black women throw themselves at you?

MAYER: I don’t think I open myself to it. My d*ck is sort of like a white supremacist. I’ve got a Benetton heart and a f*ckin’ David Duke c*ck. I’m going to start dating separately from my d*ck.

PLAYBOY: Let’s put some names out there. Let’s get specific.

MAYER: 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. Kerry Washington would break your heart like a white girl. Just all of a sudden she’d be like, “Yeah, I sucked his d*ck. Whatever.” And you’d be like, “What? We weren’t talking about that.” That’s what “Heartbreak Warfare” is all about, when a girl uses jealousy as a tactic.

PLAYBOY: In 2006 you began dating Jessica Simpson, and the paparazzi started stalking you, turning you into a tabloid fixture. Certainly you knew that was going to happen.

MAYER: It wasn’t as direct as me saying “I now make the choice to bring the paparazzi into my life.” I really said, “I now make the choice to sleep with Jessica Simpson.” That was stronger than my desire to stay out of the paparazzi’s eye. That girl, for me, is a drug. And drugs aren’t good for you if you do lots of them. Yeah, that girl is like crack cocaine to me.

PLAYBOY: You were addicted to Jessica Simpson?

MAYER: Sexually it was crazy. That’s all I’ll say. It was like napalm, sexual napalm.

PLAYBOY: But before you dated her you thought of yourself as the kind of guy who would never date Jessica Simpson.

MAYER: That’s correct. There are people in the world who have the power to change our values. Have you ever been with a girl who made you want to quit the rest of your life? Did you ever say, “I want to quit my life and just f*ckin’ snort you? If you charged me $10,000 to f*ck you, I would start selling all my shit just to keep f*cking you.”

PLAYBOY: So at this point—

MAYER: Pardon me for interrupting. I love Jen so much that I’m now thinking about how bad I would feel if she read this and was like, “Why are you putting me in an article where you’re talking about someone else? I don’t want to be in your lineage of kiss-and-tells.” {Source}

Mayer has since denounced his statements on his Twitter page. Here is what the singer had to say:

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. And while I’m using today for looking at myself under harsh light, I think it’s 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. 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. {Source}

This is the exact reason why some artists should be closely monitored when they step away from the mic. As a musician who has contributed to multiple humanitarian efforts, Mayer has disappointed many people with his ignorant and tactless comments. It just goes to show that although he is incredibly talented on his guitar, he remains astoundingly vacant between his ears. Dear John Mayer, your “hood pass” has just been revoked.


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  1. The Way I see It February 10, 2010

    Im Black, what was so racist about what he said? Nothing. BTW, some “Black” people have a way of making “black” people look ignorant. That goes with all racist. Let’s just leave the Race thing alone. Please. John Mayer Rep’n Connecticut!! =]

  2. ImYourStar702 February 10, 2010

    @the way i see it

    Do you even know who David Duke is??

  3. tim February 10, 2010

    i thought this was a british site

    why you posting about all these fake media obessed americans that have nothing to do with europe?

  4. K4kenzo February 10, 2010

    oh no he didnt :-O !! what a jerk

  5. Jermaine February 10, 2010

    I’m african-american an im not offended by what i read in this interview…. But I don’t get bothered by what white people say, or what anybody say’s or thinks of me.

  6. mesoFIERCE February 10, 2010

    WTF..Jonny Boy You hood pass has Been DENIED!!!!!

  7. stan February 10, 2010

    i’ve never liked him to begin with. this certainly isn’t helping.

  8. Kacy February 10, 2010

    @ TIM
    How long have you been on this blog?? thatgrapejuice reports more about american artist’s than English ones, if you don’t like the show, please exit the building!

    As for this dumbass John. He can pretty much kiss half his fans goodbye. He’s gonna spend the next few months apologizing, rationalizing and begging for forgiveness on chat-shows while over using the phase “it was taken out of context”.

    As Tupac Shakur once said “You can fake for a long time, but sooner or later you gone show yourself to be a phony” and that my friends is what Mr John Mayer has done. He is a racist!

    I have spoken.

  9. aj February 10, 2010



  10. The Way I see It February 10, 2010

    Lord here we go again. Im not offended by what he said..who cares. I know who I am. Don’t need to know who david Dukes is. lol.

  11. Big Bruce February 10, 2010


  12. travante richardson February 10, 2010

    well… im offended.

    MAYER: “I don’t think I open myself to it. My d*ck is sort of like a white supremacist. I’ve got a Benetton heart and a f*ckin’ David Duke c*ck. I’m going to start dating separately from my d*ck.”

    thats what bothered me

  13. misty February 10, 2010

    White artists say and do things and get a pass for it. A black person does the same thing and he/she is never forgiven again. This will be forgiven by the end of the night because people don’t think anything is “wrong” with it…Look where Tiger Woods, Chris Brown, and Kanye West are still facing for the mistakes they made and look at how this issue will fade away before we know it….
    Kanye once made a comment about nothing being done for New Orleans because it was predominantly black and people viewed him as disrespectful but John Mayor has been making racial comments for a minute now wayyy before this interview and nothing has been done about it…Charlie Sheen help a KNIFE to his wife’s throat but he’s getting a show soon yet Chris brown still can’t even attend award shows…
    Where do we draw the line?

  14. Lady J February 10, 2010

    Let me drop some American history in this post

    David Duke is an american White Nationalist and was the former Grand Wizard of the Klu Klux Klan. He is pro racial segregation and white separatism. His ex wife is also the co creator of Stormfront and prominent US based white nationalist board.

  15. ImYourStar702 February 10, 2010

    @ the way i see it

    No i didn’t think you knew who he was, so that would explain your ignorance…

  16. BEYONCE-ITIS February 10, 2010

    Who gives a s*** about this small peen having fruit has to say? I seriously believe that his peen is an equal opportunist of men and women.

  17. Kendra February 10, 2010

    I get everything that he is saying and I know who David Duke is but im still not offend. And Im black

  18. nate February 10, 2010

    the only comment that bothered me was him saying his d$@# was a white supremacist.. rather he knows it or not, he’s feeding into media just like Jessica does.. by saying crazy ish like this to a publication is clearly going to catch news.. i don’t mind john, i just hate when musicians and actors try to act like their all about their craft and act like they would never play into celebrity but then turn around and say something crazy to get attention.. i know the game and your playing it dude..

  19. Jace February 10, 2010

    Reading his entire interview made me want to puke…he’s disgusting, and not just because he used the word, but also because of the way he described his sexual relationships in the past, talking very candidly about things that should be kept a bit private, especially when he is referring to women who are in in the public eye…he seems to not have any respect period, not even for self, just an arrogant, over zealous, white boy…

  20. achilles February 10, 2010

    hahaha thaaaaats not racist its funny. what a d*****!

  21. Kami February 10, 2010

    He’s just making it evident that he has a preference and he’s making a joke out of it. Get over yourselves for anyone that’s offended, honestly.

    you can only be offended if he called you out personally.

  22. MS.CLAY February 10, 2010



  23. MS.CLAY February 10, 2010


  24. Ben February 10, 2010

    You know, it amazes me that these celebrities are so stupid and don’t think twice about the stuff they say before hand, that they end up putting their foot in their mouth and take forever trying to pull it out. Ever since he started becoming more popular in Hollywood and started dating Hollywood starlettes, I’ve been noticing a change in him. Cigarettes in his mouth, the tattoos, shirtless magazine covers, the pop life has consumed him. I’ve never given him the ghetto pass, oh excuse me, the N***** pass. I don’t care how much BB King loves him, he is a wannabe. White people want our talents SO BADLY, and once we share them, they take it for granted. I hope the egg cartons and tomatoes come flying at him on the next award show.

  25. 12345 February 11, 2010

    he is a total genius, a legend in the making, he does quality music and is one of the greatest guitarists and song writers alive, I pity you if you never heard of him, whatever, people here only listen to bublegum pop.

    on topic, he didnt say anything racist and he worked with tons of black artists including Kanye West so just shut the f*** up

  26. Its my opinion February 11, 2010

    Im not mad @ john my p-s-y is a black power kitty, she only allows the thick brown meat. lol

  27. anonymouss February 11, 2010

    i dont think what he said was racist. just inappropriate.

    like if he’s telling all this to his friends, thats alright. but when ur talking to an interviewer who is gonna take ur words and publish them for the whole world to see, you should be more wise about what comes outta ur mouth.

    and you should NOT be talkiing about how your ex girlfriends are in bed that is just so disrespectful. and ur a f****** white boy you cant say ni88er in a magazine! damn that is NOT professional at all!

    ugh, some celebs are SO STUPID!

  28. MJfan February 11, 2010

    I’ve read what Mayer said a couple of times, and to be honest as a black woman, I’m not offended by his interview at all, or by the use of the word n*****. I took it that he said, yeah I’m cool with black artists, such and such, but am I crazy to think that I have a pass to say the n word, no. So, in reality he acknowledges the fact that he doesn’t have a real ghetto pass, because if he did he could say things black say. Also, as far as the whole black woman thing. I understood exactly what he was saying, he only sleeps with white girls, because that is what he’s sexually attracted to, but he is attracted to black woman, such as Kerry Washington, the actress from PoBA and Holly Robinson Peete, beause they are pretty, but Kerry has an attitude of a white girl. Notice the black women he’s attracted to, black women that are black yet white. hmm. So, that’s what he likes. why fault him on that. He’s not calling us nappy headed h***, female dogs, etc. He’s not a black celebrity degrading black women, so this whole thing is a none issue. Silly drama let it go.

  29. cutiegurl February 11, 2010

    ugh well fine jerk, i would never buy your music anyway. Its boring, sappy, and sucks

  30. anonymouss February 11, 2010

    i do think it is racist that he said that he likes kerry washington because acts “like a white girl”.
    what the hell is that supposed to mean?

  31. Yasmin February 11, 2010

    John Mayer is a JACKASS! I like his music but I’ll never buy his cd’s again. Too many celebrities think they can say whatever they want and just issue an apology the next day to make it better. I highly doubt he will not use the N word again in the future. In that interview, John Mayer was sadly being himself!

  32. Jackman February 11, 2010

    now your a knucklehead supremacist!

  33. True February 12, 2010

    To me it didn’t offend me but he just made himself look like an idiot, someone who has lost touch with real people, I’m not a fan of his any way so that why it didn’t really affect me. I don’t think he had a hood pass in the first place just because you hang out with rappers doesn’t mean anything to the black community,
    I think he should say sorry to Kerry Washington, because i think she a really talented actress the way he was talking about her was so rude.

    Kerry Washington. She’s superhot, and she’s also white-girl crazy. Kerry Washington would break your heart like a white girl. Just all of a sudden she’d be like, “Yeah, I sucked his d*ck. whatever.” And you’d be like, “What? We weren’t talking about that.” That’s what “Heartbreak Warfare” is all about, when a girl uses jealousy as a tactic.

    Very disrespectful i don’t know if he friends with her or know her personal but why would you talk about a respected actress like she a video h** or a p*** star. If he was just saying he is attracted to her then that would be fine. But saying she also white-girl crazy what the hell is that.

  34. Shenika W. February 12, 2010

    I’m not so shocked about the racists comments, I’m shocked about his comments over all. There is something seriously wrong with Mr. Mayer. If you read all of his interview, none of his responses make sense. He just needs Jesus.

  35. anj February 15, 2010

    If Kanye West said these statements about caucasians this would be on CNN & Fox News 24/7 and this time they’ll get the lynch mob after his a**..
    Nuff Said!

  36. smh February 18, 2010

    I agree with MJFAN. John Mayer just comes across as a big d*****. He seems like he was trying too hard in his interview and didn’t draw a line between whats appropriate and whats not. I am black and I am not offended because I didn’t see anything that he said as racist. Just dumb and disrespectful, with a horrible analogy. Like someone who doesn’t know what to say. Celebrities aren’t doing anything that “regular” people aren’t already doing, its just made into something big because they are in the public eye. People like to take things out of context and blow small things out of proportion instead of focusing on bigger issues that are more important. Who cares if John Mayer used the wrong words to get his simple point across.

  37. Wayne Dent May 5, 2010

    First of all, READ WHAT HE SAID AGAIN and you will see that Mr. Mayer was making a point which IN NO WAY reflects negatively on black people. Indeed, he was saying that a white person can in no way know what a person of color has been through or goes through for the sake of his race. Mr. Mayer is loved for his music and the direct way he says things in his music but for some reason, the media has chosen to crucify him for this same characteristic in his speech during an interview. There are derogatory ways to use the ‘N’ word and there are times when, as in this case, the ‘N’ word is used appropriately and it is within the context of said use that it is determined whether it is appropriate or negative. READ THE CONTEXT OF HIS ANSWER……..GEEZ, WHENEVER THE ‘N’ WORD IS USED BY A WHITE PERSON, ALL LOGIC GOES OUT THE WINDOW AND REASONABLY INTELLIGENT PEOPLE JUST SUDDENLY SEE THE ‘N’ WORD AND NOTHING ELSE. Come on people, how many times has Puffy or Ice T used the ‘N’ word during interviews. What Mr. Mayer is experiencing is reverse racism. AND THAT’S CRAP!

  38. florida March 17, 2011

    John mayer I don’t why any women would want you in the first place. You look like a nerd and you propbably got laughed all through out high school. Keep it moving because you are not a prince charming ,in case you have not looked in the mirror lately.

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