The Spinners

♪ Comfortable / Back To You (John Mayer, 1999) ♪

In American, Edgar Allan Paule, Pop, Summer Songs, Track Reviews on April 13, 2010 at 8:58 am

Summer is the time for love. And you were my first.

I remember the first time I gave you a mix CD, I can’t remember what was in it, but it was a great mix, I’m certain. (All three CDs I ended up giving you were great. I made sure of that.) Back then we were still getting a feel for each other, and music was one of the terrains where we struggled to find common ground. You liked pop/RnB, I liked alternative bands. You loved to sing, I couldn’t sing to save anyone’s life. In short, we were screwed, kind of.

You noticed that I put John Mayer’s acoustic “Back to You” in the mix. I said that was my favorite John Mayer song. You said yours was “Comfortable”. I hadn’t heard of it. You gave me a mix CD, and that was the first track. It was the only CD you ever gave me. (It ended with Bonnie Raitt’s “I Can’t Make You Love Me”.)

I never heard of “Comfortable” from anyone before, or from anyone since. John Mayer is everywhere these days, but you are the only one I know who likes that song. It’s pretty folksy cheesy slow with violins and stuff, certainly not what Mayer is known for, which is probably why it’s not that popular. It’s about getting a nice new girl—the perfect social-butterfly-next-door who reads the bible; prim, proper and party animal in the right places—but still pining for your former, more comfortable companion: Me. Our love was comfortable and so broken in, your song says. The new girl, it says, is perfect, so flawless. I’m not impressed, I want you back. The irony is that by virtue of her being a she, she ended up being the more “comfortable” choice. And you didn’t want me back.

My song says: I’m so good at forgetting, and I quit every game I’ve played. But forgive me love, I can’t turn and walk away. The irony, a good one this time, is that I did. I walked away. But you did, first. Now I’m okay, things have shaped up for the better. Time has begun to erode my memories of those days when sometimes, you’d sing me something from the mix CDs I gave you; when oftentimes, we’d procrastinate on going home, because we didn’t want to. It’s been years now, but whenever summer comes, a tiny part of me is always taken back to that time of endless sunny afternoons. Back to you, it always comes around, back to you.

– Edgar Allan Paule

Download “Comfortable”

Download “Back To You”

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