Paradise Valley (album)
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Paradise Valley Album
Paradise Valley
Paradise Valley cover, by John Mayer.jpg
Studio album by John Mayer
Released August 20, 2013 (2013-08-20)
Recorded Electric Lady Studios
(New York City, New York)
The Village
(Los Angeles, California)
Berkeley Street Studio
(Santa Monica, California)
Ocean Way Recording
(Hollywood, California) June 2012-13
Length 40:05
Label Columbia, Sony Music
Producer John Mayer, Don Was
John Mayer chronology
Singles from Paradise Valley
  1. "Paper Doll"
    Released: June 18, 2013[1]
  2. "Wildfire"
    Released: July 16, 2013
  3. "Who You Love"
    Released: September 3, 2013[2]

Paradise Valley is the sixth studio album by musician John Mayer. Musically, it is similar to his previous album, Born and Raised, which was released in 2012. However, this album features more musical breaks and instrumentals consisting of electric guitars rather than harmonica. It was released on August 20, 2013. The album's title is an eponym of Mayer's home along the Yellowstone River in Montana's Paradise Valley, where he has lived since 2012.[3]

The album's first single, "Paper Doll", was released on June 18, 2013,[1] followed by "Wildfire" on July 16, 2013. "Wildfire" officially impacted Triple A radio on August 20, 2013.[4] "Who You Love" was released as the third single, impacting Hot AC radio on September 3, 2013.[2]

On August 13, 2013, Paradise Valley became available to stream in its entirety via iTunes. One week later it became available for iTunes download.

Release and promotion

On August 19, 2013, Mayer went on the Late Show with David Letterman to promote the album by singing the second single from the release, "Wildfire". In addition, Mayer performed a concert in the Live on Letterman series the same night, which is a web stream event.[5]

Critical reception

Paradise Valley garnered generally positive reception from music critics. Metacritic, a review-aggregator site which assigns a weighted average score based on a number of selected ratings and reviews from mainstream music critics, gave the album 73 out of 100.[6]Brian Mansfield of USA Today commented that the release "may have all the permanence of a summer camp fling".[16]Anthony DeCurtis, writing for Rolling Stone, noted that this release "continues that autobiographical journey" noticeable in Mayer's previous offerings, and showcases Mayer "in a relaxed, joyful frame of mind... Mayer continues to blow down the road, this time carrying far less baggage and all the better for it."[15] At The Oakland Press, Gary Graff noted that the album has an "anything-goes attitude", and felt Mayer had "turned in some of his most peaceful music yet."[13] Matt Collar of Allmusic felt that the sound on the album "rings true."[7]Los Angeles Times reviewer Randall Roberts wrote that "the musician is in charge here, and he keeps his peacocking in check", and that "The best part: When he does reveal his instrumental flair, he does so as someone whose natural-born skill warrants the display."[12]

Writing for the Daily Express, Stephen Unwin wrote that he felt the album needed "more oomph" and that it was "sometimes too formulaic", but that "Paradise Valley is certainly John Mayer on a good day."[9] Glenn Gamboa of Newsday graded the album a B-, and felt that "Mayer may still be a little lost", yet also felt that the release signals that Mayer "may soon find his way."[17] Writing for The Gazette, Mark LePage wrote that the album "is consolidation, soundly done", but felt that Mayer was "not advancing anything in the form", noting that "Paradise Valley is not without soul, but it never stings the way it could."[10] Craig Manning at AbsolutePunk rated the album an 85-percent, and stated it to be "still a solid set of songs that follows one of today's best songwriters as he establishes a new comfort zone."[18] At RedEye, Adam Lukach commented that Mayer's "soundscapes are sweetly arranged, and Mayer's voice, following his throat surgery, sounds as inviting as ever", but did note that this album "could benefit from a little more decisiveness."[14] Melinda Newman of HitFix graded the album an A-, and wrote that the release "has an unrushed, pleasing, timeless feel to it that never sounds forced."[19]

Caroline Sullivan from The Guardian wrote that Mayer may be "his own worst enemy".[11] Writing for the New York Post, Michaelangelo Matos said that the fact that "Mayer had throat surgery before recording this album," and that "it's understandable if he's relaxing", "doesn't make the songs any less dippy."[20] Matthew Horton of Virgin Media rated the album three-stars, and felt that "maybe we're right to be hesitant" about the album, and noted how stylistically "changes could be afoot with this sixth album."[21]Daily News's Jim Farber rated the album three stars, and said that this release "proves more successful than Mayer's last effort at nailing the styles that inspired it."[22]

Chart Performance

The album debuted at #2 on the Billboard 200 chart, with first-week sales of 145,560 copies in the United States.[23] It is his first album since 2006's Continuum to not debut at #1.

Track listing

All tracks written by John Mayer unless noted below.

1."Wildfire" 4:15
2."Dear Marie" 3:44
3."Waitin' On the Day" 4:35
4."Paper Doll" 4:19
5."Call Me the Breeze" (JJ Cale cover)JJ Cale3:27
6."Who You Love" (featuring Katy Perry)Mayer, Katy Perry4:12
7."I Will Be Found (Lost at Sea)" 4:03
8."Wildfire (Reprise)" (featuring Frank Ocean)Christopher Breaux1:28
9."You're No One 'Til Someone Lets You Down" 2:48
10."Badge and Gun" 3:15
11."On the Way Home" 3:59
Total length:40:05



  • John Mayer - Vocals, Guitars, Keyboards, Horn arrangements on track 6
  • Aaron Sterling - Drums, Percussion
  • Sean Hurley - Bass
  • Chuck Leavell - Keyboards on tracks 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 9, 10 and 11
  • Paul Franklin - Pedal Steel Guitar on tracks 2, 9 and 11
  • Zane Carney - Guitar on tracks 1 and 2
  • Rami Jaffee - Keyboards on tracks 1 and 8
  • Lisa Fischer - Background Vocals on tracks 7 and 11
  • David Ryan Harris - Background Vocals on track 4
  • Bernard Fowler - Background Vocals on track 7
  • Frank Ocean - Wurlitzer, Vocals on track 8
  • Katy Perry - Vocals on track 6
  • Larry Williams - Tenor Saxophone, Flute, Horn arrangements on track 6
  • Dan Higgins - Tenor Saxophone, Flute on track 6
  • Gary Grant - Flugelhorn on track 6
  • Bill Reichenbach Jr. - Tenor Trombone, Bass Trombone, EB Alto Horn on track 6


  • Michael McDonald - Executive Producer, Management
  • Don Was, John Mayer - Producer
  • Chad Franscoviak - Engineering
  • Manny Marroquin - Mixing on tracks 1 to 6, 8 to 11
  • Chris Galland - Mixing assistance on tracks 1 to 6, 8 to 11
  • Dlbert Bowers - Mixing assistance on tracks 1 to 6, 8 to 11
  • Bob Ludwig - Mastering
  • Patrick Spain - Recording (Additional recording assistance)
  • Chris Owens, Jeff Gartenbaum - Recording (Assistance)
  • Allen Ditto - Recording (Pedal Steel)
  • Martin Pradler - Digital Editing
  • Dave Bett, Jeri Heiden, SMOG Design, Inc. - Design
  • Sam Jones - Photography
  • Hiroki Nakamura - Stylist
  • Reid Hunter, Serling, Rooks, Ferrara, McKoy And Worob, LLP - Legal
  • Chris Gott - Production Manager
  • Ken Helie - Production Coordinator
  • Mick Management - Management
  • Creative Artists Agency, Scott Clayton - Management Agency
  • Cal Financial Group, Rit Venerus - Management Business



Region Certification Certified units/Sales
Canada (Music Canada)[50] Gold 40,000^
United States (RIAA)[51] Gold 500,000double-dagger

^shipments figures based on certification alone
double-daggersales+streaming figures based on certification alone


  1. ^ a b Ramirez, Erika. "John Mayer Releases First 'Paradise Valley' Single, 'Paper Doll': Listen". Billboard. Retrieved 2013. 
  2. ^ a b Miller, Julie. "Exclusive: John Mayer and Katy Perry's First Portraits Together, Commemorating Their "Who You Love" Single". HWD. 
  3. ^ Traylor, Aaron. "John Mayer Sends Love to Montana With New Album Title "Paradise Valley"". Zoom 107.5FM. Retrieved 2013. 
  4. ^ "John Mayer Attempts To Blaze Up Summer With 'Wildfire,' New Album "". 
  5. ^ John Mayer (August 19, 2013). "Live on Letterman - John Mayer". CBS and World Wide Pants. Retrieved 2013. 
  6. ^ a b "Critic Reviews for Paradise Valley". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. August 19, 2013. Retrieved 2013. 
  7. ^ a b Collar, Matt (August 15, 2013). "John Mayer, Paradise Valley". AllMusic. Retrieved 2013. 
  8. ^ Hal, Horowitz (August 19, 2013). "John Mayer: Paradise Valley". American Songwriter. Retrieved 2013. 
  9. ^ a b Unwin, Stephen (August 16, 2013). "CD Review: John Mayer- Paradise Valley". Daily Express. Retrieved 2013. 
  10. ^ a b Mark, LePage (August 19, 2013). "Album review: John Mayer, Paradise Valley". The Gazette. Retrieved 2013. 
  11. ^ a b Sullivan, Caroline (August 15, 2013). "John Mayer: Paradise Valley - review". The Guardian. Retrieved 2013. 
  12. ^ a b Roberts, Randall (August 22, 2013). "Album review: John Mayer's redemptive 'Paradise Valley'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2013. 
  13. ^ a b Gary, Graff (August 19, 2013). "Album reviews: John Mayer, Jimmy Buffett, Ty Segall, more". The Oakland Press. Retrieved 2013. 
  14. ^ a b Adam, Lukach (August 19, 2013). "Album review: John Mayer, 'Paradise Valley'". RedEye. Retrieved 2013. 
  15. ^ a b DeCurtis, Anthony. "John Mayer, 'Paradise Valley'". Rolling Stone. Wenner Media LLC. August 29, 2013 (1190): 60. ISSN 0035-791X. Retrieved 2013. 
  16. ^ a b Brian, Mansfield (August 19, 2013). "Album of the week: John Mayer's 'Paradise Valley'". USA Today. Retrieved 2013. 
  17. ^ Glenn, Glenn (August 16, 2013). "John Mayer's 'Paradise Valley' review: Still a charmer". Newsday. Retrieved 2013. 
  18. ^ Manning, Craig (August 18, 2013). "John Mayer - Paradise Valley". AbsolutePunk. Archived from the original on August 19, 2013. Retrieved 2013. 
  19. ^ Newman, Melinda (August 20, 2013). "Album Review: John Mayer's 'Paradise Valley' features Katy Perry and Frank Ocean". HitFix. Archived from the original on August 20, 2013. Retrieved 2013. 
  20. ^ Matos, Michaelangelo (August 19, 2013). "Mayer phones one in". New York Post. Retrieved 2013. 
  21. ^ Horton, Matthew (August 16, 2013). "His millions of US sales will be a small crumb of comfort, but John Mayer's an irrelevance over here". Virgin Media. Archived from the original on September 27, 2013. Retrieved 2013. 
  22. ^ Jim, Farber (August 20, 2013). "Music reviews: 'Paradise Valley,' 'The Wild Feathers'". Daily News. Retrieved 2013. 
  23. ^ "Building Album Sales Chart". HITS Daily Double. Retrieved . 
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  40. ^ "John Mayer Chart History (Digital Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved August 24, 2013.
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  43. ^ "John Mayer Chart History (Top Tastemaker Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved August 31, 2013.
  44. ^ Hung, Steffen. "Dutch Charts -". 
  45. ^ "Billboard 200 Albums: Year End 2013". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2014. 
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  47. ^ "Top Folk Albums: Year End 2013". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2014. 
  48. ^ "Top Rock Albums: Year End 2014". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2014. 
  49. ^ "Top Folk Albums: Year End 2014". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2014. 
  50. ^ "Canadian album certifications - John Mayer - Paradise Valley". Music Canada. 
  51. ^ "American album certifications - John Mayer - Paradise Valley". Recording Industry Association of America.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH

Paradise Valley

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