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John Mayer Says Collaboration With Katy Perry Is No Gimmick

Katy Perry has beaten her on-again, off-again partner John Mayer to the charts this time around. Both performers have albums out this year, but its Mayer who got to put out the long-rumored duet the two worked on together. With Mayer’s latest album, Paradise Valley, set to be released this week, the singer wants everyone to know his work with Perry “is not a gimmick.”

Both Perry and Mayer are prominent in the music scene, but their individual styles differ greatly. Perry’s pop sensibilities don’t really seem to mesh with Mayer’s soft jams. In fact, he is the first to admit the duet is an unlikely collaboration. However, he says that the song, called “Who You Love,” is the sort of music that he hopes people will engage with.

"When you first read the reports about [the duet], you'll think that it's a gimmick ... I love a good challenge and that's certainly one. But the hope is you hear it once because of the curiosity and then you go, 'Wow, I really like that. I could find a place for hearing that a lot more.'"

Paradise Valley is the singer’s sixth studio album and the first new music the man has produced since he developed granuloma back in 2011. The vocal issues forced him to cancel tour dates on several occasions. It took him until recently to get back in the studio and record, but at least the singer is back with a vengeance. He’s been busy touring and has plans to continue into this fall. His newest album is already tracking well too.

With the long space between albums, there’s plenty of interest in Paradise Valley. Billboard is expecting the album to debut in the #2 slot after sales have been tracked for the first full week of release. While Paradise Valley is expected to push around 150,000 copies by the end of the week, the outlet doesn’t necessarily expect the singer to do better than Luke Bryan, who is on a roll with his recent album, Crash My Party.

A #2 debut seems just fine for the 35-year-old singer, who tells Billboard he measures his success by his audience rather than by his Nielsen Soundscan numbers.

"The thing I love about my career the most is it's not an attempt to be a blockbuster. There's stuff on the charts, if you played it for me to tell you if I thought it would be a hit, I'd have been wrong. So who am I to act as if I've got the recipe for a hit?... For me now, it's how many people are at a show."

With Paradise Valley appearing to strong numbers, it seems he may get both. You can order the performer’s latest album over at iTunes.

Jessica Rawden
Jessica Rawden

Amazing Race & Top Chef superfan with a pinch of Disney fairy dust thrown in. If you’ve created a rom-com I’ve probably watched it.