Watch John Mayer cover Tears For Fears’ Everybody Wants to Rule the World with Alexander 23

Alexander 23 (left) and John Mayer (right) performing live together
(Image credit: Alexander 23/YouTube)

Last Tuesday (May 10) marked the final show of John Mayer’s 2022 Sob Rock tour, and to round off his mammoth stint round North America in style, the electric guitar hero joined his support act Alexander 23 for a cover of Tears For Fears’ Everybody Wants to Rule the World.

As Alexander 23 – AKA Alexander Glantz, a Grammy-nominated multi-instrumentalist and pop singer-songwriter – reached the halfway point in his opening set, he unexpectedly introduced the evening’s main attraction onstage as an additional guitar player.

Arriving into view donning his pink Floyd Rose-equipped Jackson Soloist, Mayer then joined Glantz, his in-house guitarist Sam Yun – both of whom were wielding PRS Silver Skys – and the rest of the 23 crew for the faithful cover, which was injected with a suitable amount of additional six-string ear candy.

Alexander 23 takes the role of relaying the intro melody – which is decorated with some whammy bar wiggles a la Mayer – before a repeat of the punchy palm-muted verse passage sees some more experimental chordal embellishments from the Continuum rhythm wizard.

Unsurprisingly, the cover is absolutely dripping in chorus, but a fair amount of dirt and bite is employed by Mayer and Yun as the pair trade quick-fire solos towards the end. It’s Mayer’s lead line that closes the track out though, arriving in a characteristic pool of sultry notes that drip their way down the fretboard.

After the event, Alexander 23 wrote, “If you know me at all, you know how much this means to me. Thank you John Mayer for being so gracious on and off the stage. 

“It was an honor to share the road with you and your all star band,” he continued. “Many moments in my life (music related and otherwise) I have thought to myself, ‘I wonder what John would say about this?’ I’m grateful to now have that answer just a text away. 

“Tears For Fears on the Sob Rock tour. A fitting end to something I never wanted to end.”

Unfortunately for Alexander 23, the Sob Rock tour has indeed ended, but that doesn’t mean Mayer is taking the rest of the year off the road. Instead, he’ll be back in action next month as Dead and Company kickstart their summer tour.

It’s been an eventful time on the road for Mayer. Not only did he test positive for Covid on two separate occasions this year, he also brought his pink Jackson Soloist out of hibernation for a number of live appearances.

More recently, he signed a fan’s Klon Centaur overdrive pedal by marking his own preferred settings.

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Matt Owen

Matt is a Staff Writer, writing for Guitar World, Guitarist and Total Guitar. He has a Masters in the guitar, a degree in history, and has spent the last 16 years playing everything from blues and jazz to indie and pop. When he’s not combining his passion for writing and music during his day job, Matt records for a number of UK-based bands and songwriters as a session musician.