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This Album Changed My Life: Brooks Huntley On John Mayer’s ‘Born And Raised’

23 February 2023 | 1:10 pm | Mallory Arbour

To learn more about Brooks Huntley, we asked him about an album that changed his life.

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Brooks Huntley, a rising country artist from the Texas Hill Country, developed his passion for music after hearing Stevie Ray Vaughan's Pride and Joy on Guitar Hero III at the young age of 10. 

A passion for guitar quickly also became a passion for songwriting he developed throughout his teen years. 

Brooks made the move to Nashville at 19-years-old. His inspirations come from a wide range of artists, including the soft and folksy California rock stylings of The Eagles, the emotional and guitar-forward sensibilities of John Mayer, the lyrical honesty the on-stage energy of Keith Urban, and the boundless creativity and genre-bending of HARDY.  

His latest singles, Rush Orders and Don’t Say It Wasn’t Love gained over 10,000 streams in the first four days of release and were added to numerous Spotify country playlists.  

To learn more about Brooks Huntley, we asked him about an album that changed his life.

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Brooks Huntley on Born And Raised by John Mayer:

“A lot of records have changed my life, but none like John Mayer's Born and Raised. I’ve never really understood what it was about this record that changed so much for me exactly, but it came out when I was 14 years old, and I was never the same again.

Hearing a guy, who I thought was just a blues guitar god, completely change his artistry up and do it that well, basically confirmed for me that changing is okay, especially as an artist.

Born and Raised taught me how impressive simply writing a great song is. Up to the point that I first heard that record, music was very much about the guitar and how technically impressive I could play it. I had an almost competitive sports-like mentality about it, trying to figure out how I could play the flashiest solos or play the fastest licks. John Mayer's music had captured my mind in that way already, but to hear him play the guitar as just a means to suiting the song - that was all new to me.

Suddenly, instead of a song just being a place to play the guitar, the song was the star, and the guitar was the best supporting actor. Realising this changed everything for me about what I thought the point of being a musician is.

John had every reason to “stay in his lane”. He was succeeding wildly in the bluesy pop space he had pioneered, and nobody would have blamed him for sticking with that winning formula. But he was bold, broke out, and did something different. The result was magical, and for myself and many other young musicians growing up listening to it, life and career altering. Over years later and that record is still a front to finish listen for me on at least a monthly basis.”


For more of our This Album Changed My Life series, go here.
Keep up to date with Brooks Huntley on his Facebook page here.