Framing Britney Spears is hitting everyone who watched it hard, including singer John Mayer. Mayer discussed the new documentary on Monday in an interview on Andy Cohen's SiriusXM radio show, Andy Cohen Live. He admitted that he "almost cried five times" during the movie, sympathizing with Spears' plight like never before.
"To see the sadness in this human being, I almost, I mean the end, I mean, I was on the edge of tears five times, because if you understand what this business, slash industry, slash lifestyle does to a person," he added. "To go through this and come out the other side OK, is to have infinite grace for those who struggle with it." Mayer said he could not help comparing Spears' story to his own experience with fame and with the corporate music industry. However, he said that it opened his eyes to how much his gender made his life easier.
"I came out OK... I have a very strong feeling that part of that is because I'm a man," he said. "And I have a very strong feeling that a lot of these things that happen to female performers is endemic to being female. Why do so many men emerge going, 'Learned my lesson. Yes, I got dinked in the head, but I'm back baby'? So I watched it with such grace for someone who got much more maligned by the inhuman experiment of fame than I did."
"And I go, 'Why did I get through that?'" Mayer continued. "'Why did I find my way through that obstacle course? What was afforded to me stylistically'? The stylistic difference of being an outlaw. If you're a man, you're an outlaw. If you're a woman, you're kind of crazy. And when I watched that through that lens, my heart just ached the whole time."
Mayer is essentially a contemporary of Spears. Born just four years before her, Mayer began pursuing music professionally in 1997 — the same year that Spears got a record deal after The Mickey Mouse Club was canceled. Both performers were swept up in the super-stardom of the era, with all the celebrity gossip coverage that came with it.
Mayer joins a growing chorus of stars who are weighing in on the new Spears documentary. Others include Sarah Jessica Parker, Khloe Kardashian and Valerie Bertinelli, all wondering how Spears could get justice for these years of turmoil.