Vultures
John Mayer Lyrics


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Some of us, we're hardly ever here
The rest of us, we're born to disappear
How do I stop myself from
Being just a number?
How will I hold my head
To keep from going under?

Down to the wire
I wanted water, but
I'll walk through the fire
If this is what it takes
To take me even higher
Then I'll come through
Like I do
When the world keeps
Testing me, testing me, testing me

How did they find me here?
What do they want from me?
All of these vultures hiding
Right outside my door
I hear them whisperin'
They're tryin' to ride it out
They've never gone this long
Without a kill before

Down to the wire
I wanted water, but
I'll walk through the fire
If this is what it takes
To take me even higher
Then I'll come through
Like I do
When the world keeps
Testing me, testing me, testing me

Wheels up
I got to leave this evening
Can't seem to shake these vultures
Off of my trail
Power is made by power being taken
So I keep on running
To protect my situation

Down to the wire
I wanted water, but
I'll walk through the fire
If this is what it takes
To take me even higher
Then I'll come through
Like I do
When the world keeps
Testing me, testing me, testing me

Ooh
Ooh
Ooh
Ooh
What'cha gonna do about it?
What'cha gonna do about it?
What'cha gonna do about it?
Don't give up, give up, give up




Don't give up, give up, give up
Don't give up, give up, give up

Overall Meaning

The lyrics of John Mayer’s “Vultures” delve into the idea of fighting through difficult and trying times, when external forces are trying to break one’s spirit. The first verse is very straight forward, discussing the idea that some people are always around while others seem to disappear. It highlights the idea that each person has their own way of dealing with life’s challenges, but ultimately, we all wonder how we can prevent becoming a faceless number within society.


The chorus of the song reiterates the fact that life can be hard, and it feels as if the world is constantly testing us. The reference to "vultures" indicates the people who are always willing to pick at our carcasses when we’re at our most vulnerable, wanting to stake their claim on what is left behind.


The second verse revisits the idea of vultures, only this time they appear to be surrounding the songwriter's personal space like they're waiting for him to face a difficult moment so they can take advantage of him. It's almost as if they derive pleasure from their misfortune. The lyrics "All of these vultures hiding/Right outside my door/I hear them whisperin'" demonstrate the anxiety that comes with being visibly vulnerable. Even though they are waiting all around, the singer recognizes that he must keep moving forward despite the obstacles. In the end, he decides that the only way to keep going is to keep pursuing great things while these “vultures” keep looking for scraps.


Overall, the song is about the constant struggles that people face in their everyday lives, and the drive and motivation needed to keep going when the world is fighting against you. The lyrics discuss taking on challenges head-on and not giving up when things are tough, themes that many listeners have found relatable and inspiring.


Line by Line Meaning

Some of us, we're hardly ever here
Some people feel like they don't belong or don't matter


The rest of us, we're born to disappear
Others feel like they are insignificant and will be forgotten


How do I stop myself from Being just a number?
The singer is questioning how to stand out and be remembered


How will I hold my head To keep from going under?
The singer is worried about being overwhelmed and not able to handle the pressures of life


Down to the wire I wanted water, but I'll walk through the fire If this is what it takes To take me even higher Then I'll come through Like I do When the world keeps Testing me, testing me, testing me
The singer is willing to take risks and withstand challenges to reach his goals


How did they find me here? What do they want from me?
The singer feels invaded and confused about why someone is bothering him


All of these vultures hiding Right outside my door I hear them whisperin' They're tryin' to ride it out They've never gone this long Without a kill before
The 'vultures' represent people who are waiting for the singer to fail or lose his power, and have never seen him struggle for so long


Wheels up I got to leave this evening Can't seem to shake these vultures Off of my trail Power is made by power being taken So I keep on running To protect my situation
The singer is trying to escape the people who want to bring him down, but knows that he needs to keep fighting and pushing forward to maintain his success and control


What'cha gonna do about it? Don't give up, give up, give up
The singer is motivating himself to keep going and not let others bring him down




Lyrics © BMG Rights Management, REACH MUSIC PUBLISHING, Downtown Music Publishing
Written by: John Mayer, Pino Palladino, Steven Jordan

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind
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