Mayer Hawthorne seemed to travel forward in time, arriving in this millennium after being transported from the stage of “The !!! Beat” show in the ‘60s. After Hawthorne’s heartache R&B songs perked the ears of Mr. Manak of Stone’s Throw Records, a 7” followed, as did A Strange Arrangement. Fresh off the press is How Do You Do, still dripping with the R&B groove that initially drew new ears to this style of timeless music.
With a “There’s a Thin Line Between Love and Hate” swagger, Hawthorne serenades as the fire crackles and the brandy warms on “Get To Know You.” Snoop Dog gets in on the action on “Can’t Stop,” as the horn elements push the emotion to the surface and things get a bit steamy.
Like the wedding scene from “Old School” where The Dan Band takes the attendees off guard, expecting the song’s lyrics were G-Rated-wholesome, the single “The Walk” isn’t on a beach with a beautiful sunset, despite the feel-good groove. It’s a walk right on out the door, ‘cause “…your shitty fucking attitude has got me changin’ my mind,” a conclusion made after being “jerked around” for the last time.
“Hooked” overflows with a bounce and a beat that pushes the girls and boys to the dance floor, as does “Stick Around,” with a sway that doesn’t let go; and “Henny & Gingerale” that would slide right into a Kool & The Gang mix.
A myriad of song-writing tricks are tied up in “News,” with a reggae rhythm, a dash of toy piano, xylophone-ish keyboard licks and horns. And “Strings” has such a deep hook that whether you’re a romantic or not, you can’t help but feel your bootie move from side to side.
Mayer Hawthorne is the master of the heart for this generation, singing what most think or feel when it comes to the matters of love and life. Granted, it may be a bit more “real” lyrics-wise than those that came before him in a women-can’t-live-with-em-can’t-live-without-em-can’t-run-em-over-in-your-car kind of way. But that’s what makes this music relevant to the present and the not the past. We don’t tend to candy-coat things as much these days. And that’s a good thing.
In the liner notes Hawthorne has a long list of “thank-you” messages to all the peeps for their support “And to all the beautiful women in the world: thanks for the inspiration.” I can see the smirk on his face right now.
How Do You Do hits the streets on October 11. Mayer Hawthorne and the County are hitting the road now (including a few dates with Chromeo), coming to Colorado for three dates – October 6, 7, 8 – and continuing the tour through the end of October.
Kaffeine Buzz has two tickets to give away to the After Party at Larimer Lounge on October 7, after the show at the Ogden in Denver. The first to tweet this story with – Music Review: Mayer Hathorne “How Do You Do” http://ow.ly/6OV0r | @kaffeinebuzz #howdoyoudo – wins!
How Do You Do Tour Dates:
6-Oct Boulder Theatre Boulder, CO
7-Oct Ogden Denver, CO
8-Oct Belly Up Aspen, CO
10-Oct Showbox SODO Seattle, WA
11-Oct Roseland Portland, OR
12-Oct Arcata Community Center Arcata, CA
13-Oct Knitting Factory Reno, NV
14-Oct Bimbo’s 365 Club San Francisco, CA
15-Oct The Roxy Los Angeles, CA
16-Oct Club Nokia Los Angeles, CA
17-Oct House of Blues San Diego, CA
18-Oct Marquee Phoenix, AZ
20-Oct Midland Theatre Kansas City, MO
21-Oct Cain’s Tulsa, OK
22-Oct The Lyric Oxford, MS
24-Oct Pageant St Louis, MO
25-Oct Cannery Ballroom Nashville, TN
27-Oct The National Richmond, VA
29-Oct Fillmore Washington, DC
31-Oct Electric Factory Philadelphia, PA
1-Nov House of Blues Boston, MA
2-Nov Sound Academy Toronto, Canada
4-Nov Terminal 5 New York, NY
5-Nov Terminal 5 New York, NY