News: Russell Simmons & JD On John Mayer's Controversial N-Word Usage, "He Didn't Mean Anything By It"

Tuesday, Feb 16, 2010 11:30PM

Written by Cyrus Langhorne

Rap moguls Jermaine "JD" Dupri and Russell Simmons have vouched for rocker John Mayer in light of his recently published Playboy Magazine interview where he is quoted using the N-word.

From Simmons' perspective, Mayer lost himself in the moment during the interview.

"He's a nice guy. He don't know," Simmons said in an interview. "If you live in Beverly Hills, you might think there's a post-racial society and the pain is gone. A lot of black people use that word, all the time -- myself included -- kind of as a way to ease the pain from it. You sort of forget that it even existed. We can do that. But when you see people outside of the community do that, it's more hurtful. He didn't mean anything by it. I give him a pass. He's hard on his girls, though, ain't he? On the black community, it's not so hard. That's my opinion." (MTV)

JD also felt Mayer did not understand the seriousness behind his publicized interview.

"I thought it was a funny-a** interview," Dupri added. "I personally think he thought he was talking to Playboy and it wasn't gonna get to the rest of the world. I guess he underestimated his power and how famous he is and people took it the wrong way. Not to say what he said was cool, but I thought it was a funny interview. It's his private parts and whatever he wants to do with 'em, that's what he wants to do with 'em. That's not for us to judge. I think we in his business too much. I think he [went] the wrong way about saying it. I love the Jessica Simpson part though." (MTV)

In Mayer's interview, the guitar player also referred to having a "hood pass."

"Someone asked me the other day, 'What does it feel like now to have a hood pass?'And by the way, it's sort of a contradiction in terms, because if you really had a hood pass, you could call it a n*gger pass. Why are you pulling a punch and calling it a hood pass if you really have a hood pass? But I said, 'I can't really have a hood pass. I've never walked into a restaurant, asked for a table and been told, 'We're full.' .... I don't think I open myself to [black women]. My d*ck is sort of like a white supremacist. I've got a Benetton heart and a f*ckin' David Duke c*ck. I'm going to start dating separately from my d*ck." (Playboy Magazine)

The singer is known for having a strong presence within hip-hop.

Mayer began to collaborate extensively, often working with artists outside of his own genre. He appeared on Common's song "Go!" and on Kanye West's "Bittersweet Poetry." Following these collaborations, Mayer received praise from rap heavyweights Jay-Z and Nelly. When asked about his presence in the hip hop community, Mayer said, "It's not music out there right now. That's why, to me, hip-hop is where rock used to be." (Wikipedia)

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