Gig Seeker Pro



Band Rock Folk


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Stillwater indie rockers stranger than local pop-rock stage brethren"

A cursory glance at Mayola’s show history and you may think you have them pegged. Frequent shows with pop-rock locals like The Neighborhood and The City Lives imply affability — high-energy, radio-friendly beats with an indie rock edge.


Singer/guitarist Riley Jantzen, bassist Antonio Laster, keyboardist Bryan Thompson, guitarist Travis Nichols and drummer Madden Humphrey want you to know something: They’re a whole lot weirder than that. So why, then, is Mayola popping up everywhere?

“A lot of it just has to do with the overall energy,” Jantzen said. “Pretty much any of the good bands from Oklahoma capture the crowd. It’s not so much their music a lot of the time. We’re freaking weird, so whenever we get on a show like that, it’s strange, but we know it’s going to work. People like to have fun, and if we’re having fun, they’re going to have fun. We used to try and get with bands like us. We found out there were only one or two in the state of Oklahoma.”

With a catalog reminiscent of everything from folk to country to 1970s rock to klezmer, local bands like Mayola are few and far between. The fivesome will headline an 8 p.m. Thursday show at Norman’s Opolis.

Despite diverse results, Mayola’s songwriting tactics seem pretty straightforward, aided, no doubt, by two key factors — the first, the dissolution of the Mayola house, former home to everyone in the band.

“I wouldn’t say (living separately) is harder. It may make the music better because, typically, I write the songs. I’ll come up with the lyrics and the groove and all that stuff, and then I’ll come to Madden,” Jantzen said. “It’s good for me to be alone, to write these songs and capture the point that I’m looking for and then bring it in to work on it, as opposed to being in the middle of writing a song, and then all of it kind of hits, and we’re left not knowing what the ending is going to be.”

Factor two is what keeps the band members busy, creatively speaking, outside of time spent working on Mayola.

“All that all of us really want to do is play music, so we never really run out of time to do individual stuff,” Jantzen said. “If it came down to having to put those on hold, we happily would. We all have creativity in different directions. With me writing the majority of the new material for Mayola, Antonio, the front man for Brother Bear, has his own inspirations, and he goes a totally different direction. It’s cool because nobody ever feels like they’re not getting enough input, because they can put their inspiration somewhere else.”

Though the members may scatter their inspiration, it’s likely they collect it from the same place — the band’s adopted hometown of Stillwater. Though originally from Enid, the boys in Mayola transplanted, a move largely inspired by that city’s burgeoning local music scene.

“It has to do with great bands coming out of Stillwater,” Jantzen said. “We’re all good friends with all those bands, and when we see them doing something great, it motivates us to move harder and faster. At the same time, we have each other’s backs. It’s just a great place to do this.”

Mayola is currently working on the full-length followup to last year’s “Everybody” E.P., which the group recorded at Jantzen’s house.

“We’re about to start finishing up the last demos of the new songs,” he said. “It’s all just kind of happening right now. We’re in the zone.” —Becky Carman - OKGazette

"Review of Mayola at D-Fest 2008"

"I had no idea what energetic was until I saw Mayola live. Unbelievable. The stage presence, the crowd interaction, the showmanship are heads and shoulders above most other bands — it simply could not be better. Mayola has really matured as a band in recent years, slowly evolving their sound into this interesting 'vaudevillian Built to Spill fronted by a deranged Tom Waits' band."


"Five musicians debut as Stillwater’s newest sound"

Five male musicians are living in a house together, creating music and paying high electric bills. It may sound like a reality show, but the band members of Mayola are genuine, and the house is surprisingly clean.

Happy Narwhal Records pulsated with the vibrations of Stillwater’s new sound Friday, as the band enthusiastically dominated the stage with its energy.

The band includes Travis Nichols, a theater sophomore at Northern Oklahoma College; Antonio Laster, a theater sophomore; Riley Jantzen; Madden Humphrey, a psychology sophomore; and Bryan Thompson, a film junior.

Nichols plays the guitar, the trumpet and sings. Laster plays bass, which he spent one semester learning specifically for Mayola, and he also “yells.” Jantzen writes most of the music, using folk as inspiration and places a great amount of emphasis on lyrical integrity. He plays the guitar and is also the designated lead singer (although vocals are almost evenly distributed between Nichols, Laster and Jantzen). Humphrey plays the drums and adds a unique, indie quality to the band by using a single bass pedal.

“I’m the new guy,” said Thompson, who is the keyboardist and noisemaker.

Thompson joined Mayola a week ago, and the band is excited about experimenting with the new sound infusion.

Mayola originated in Enid, where all the members grew up. Musicians since grade school and junior high, they played in separate bands that sometimes jammed with each other. It wasn’t until December 2004 that the members of Mayola actually played together as one.

With a show already scheduled, Mayola had a little over a month to create five songs. They practiced at Jantzen’s parents’ house in Enid, but it wasn’t until after the first show the band realized they had discovered a very original sound.

“The vibe was crazy,” Laster said.

According to Nichols, the bands they had played in before were punk rock, and the new sound really surprised their audience.

“This is something special that doesn’t come along every day,” he said.

However, it was at Mayola’s summer 2005 show in Enid that the band realized their potential.

“It was the worst show we’ve played, and the best show we’ve played,” Laster said.

The band had some amusing mechanical difficulties.

“Microphones were falling everywhere, but toward the end of the set everything came together,” Laster said.

“It was really emotional for us,” Humphrey said. “Our last show was really intense.”

The audience’s reaction made Mayola really become committed to each other.

“If we knew that people were taking us seriously, we might as well take ourselves seriously,” Laster said.

It was the last time the band played together before going away to start their freshman years at different colleges. After spending nine months apart and longing for the music, the members decided to move to one city and go to school together. They moved to Stillwater July 1, 2006, and every member said they love the town and its music scene.

Melanie Novak, an agriculture business pre-vet sophomore, said she really appreciates the band’s impact on the community.

“They give people a place to come instead of going out partying.”

When asked what their style was, the band couldn’t agree. Nichols said it is experimental indie rock. Laster called it new new metal, and Humphrey preferred the universal title of rock ’n’ roll. However, it is the soul, not a titled style, that creates good music, and Mayola is all passion.

Nicole Riley - The Daily O'Collegian- September 2006


Mayola is a musical explosion of passion and madness. Composed of Antonio Laster, Travis Nichols, Bryan Thompson, Riley Jantzen, and Madden Humphrey, Mayola, now all residing in Stillwater, emphasizes all that is excellent and that which should be strived for within indie music. Bereft of typical songs full of teen angst and emo pity, Mayola’s lyrical quality, coupled with their technical instrumental proficiency, makes for better music than most of what we might hear on the radio.
In December of 2004, Madden, Riley, Antonio, and Travis, all Enid, Oklahoma natives, each previously belonging to a different band, formed Mayola with the hopes of world domination and fifteen year old groupies. With each member of the band, along with new member, Bryan Thompson, came their prior musical preferences and styles, which would soon meld into a style I can only describe as Mayolanese. Mayola’s intricate blend of metal bass tactics, subtle rhythm guitar undertones, thunder and lighting drums, wired yet balanced lead guitar, and outspoken keyboard play, along with thoughtful lyrics, will have you dancing and thinking in ways you cant understand.
Aside from playing exceptional music, one of the draws to Mayola is their live show. Their shows have been described as “extremely intense” by some who have been in attendance during Mayola’s exorcism of music demons. Mayola’s outpouring of energy and passion could power many bands for weeks. Not only are you treated with good music, there’s a show as well.
For those of who might be put off by the “indie” genre label, my self included, one would be remiss to simply ignore this band on that basis, as they are far more interesting, entertaining, and complex than bands typical of the genre. In fact, I have had quite the difficult time in quantifying them as indie, as they employ the attitudes and musical structures of many genres. Their ideals and music suggest more of an experimental style than what is typical within many genres.
When asked who their greatest influences are, they band’s response was that there is no one agreed upon band or writer who has had the greatest influence on them or that they model themselves after. Rather, there is a wealth of musical influence that they draw from to alter, as they feel necessary.
After spending only a few hours with the guys of Mayola, my ears rang for days and I felt as though I had just heard the beginnings of greatness. When I asked what their next stage stunt might be, the band responded by saying they might skin a cat on stage. With this in mind, along with the wish to feed your new music desires make the effort to see these guys. Even if you don’t hate cats, Mayola is well worth a listen. Trust me.

If you are interested in contacting Mayola for show information or purchasing a CD, they can be reached online at:

Jared Vaughn
- The Strip- November 2006

"Woody Would Pick 'er: Woody Awards"

People's Choice Award: Mayola

Oklahoma Gazette readers overwhelmingly picked Stillwater’s Mayola as their favorite band for 2007.
Natives of Enid, Mayola has an anxious sound. Vocal anthems are hurled between jagged rhythmic layers of frantic guitars and drums. Some of the songs feature laughter, some just have screams streaming haphazard words about.
The band spent time early this year working on its new self-titled EP, said drummer Madden Humphrey.
“This recording, we hope, will be a little more legitimate,” he said. “It will definitely be more experimental. (Singer) Riley (Jantzen) has a really great voice, he sort of does this half-yelling, half-singing thing, so some of that will be on the new record, too.”

Joe Wertz
- Oklahoma Gazette- March 2007

"Mayola and the Neighborhood"

Oklahoma State University’s Starlite Terrace makes for a non-traditional venue, more of a ballroom than anything else. As a result, people seemed unsure whether to press up to the front or spread themselves out around the spacious room. In spite of this unusual venue, the two bands performing on February 9 kept the audience hooked. Mayola, a Stillwater band, and the Neighborhood, a Norman band, both play music with an indie feel, yet the two sets had entirely different sounds to them.

Mayola played an incredibly impressive set of songs. With five men playing at once, the music could get a little overwhelming sometimes, but the band’s front man, Antonio was completely charming. His excellent stage presence made the band seem a little less dominant and a little more accessible. The band clearly enjoys doing what they do. While onstage, they didn’t look any different than they did talking together before their set. Their fast-paced music and their evident pleasure in performance made them a highly entertaining group, and it was truly a disappointment to see them leave the stage.

The Neighborhood also played a solid set, although the slower, steadier pace of their music seemed a little sedate after Mayola’s tour de force. Their musical style is a little bit indie, a little bit emo, and a lot experimental. While the lyrics may get a little bitter sometimes, the music itself always stays upbeat and keeps the crowd drawn in. The highlight of the show was by far the drummer’s performance. He plays with his entire body, throwing everything he has into each song. It is clear he enjoys what he does – he appears to just kick back and do what he loves without having to focus on it. The other two band members also performed pretty dynamically, moving around as they played and moving in tune to the music. Their dramatic pauses and sudden moves allowed the audience to participate sudden changes in beat or tempo.

Both of these bands, as indie/experimental bands, are an essential part of the music scene. Bands such as these seem to be ever-present on college campuses. Experimental and indie bands mess with the usual conventions of music, skewing the rules and giving their music a new, different sound. This sort of development is essential to the development and furthering of new musical styles.

I am usually pretty close-minded about my music – I have a hard time opening up to new bands. However, I really enjoyed both of these bands. I love the idea that the musical styles I’m seeing in a small venue could soon be mainstream stylings. If you’re interested in this sort of breakthrough performances, Mayola’s next concert is February 23, at Mike’s College Bar in Stillwater. Keep an eye on the Neighborhood’s website,, for information on their next show.

Megan Heald - OU Honors College Guide to Cultural and Arts Events- Febuary 2007

"One amazing night with two amazing bands!"

One amazing night with two amazing bands! The Neighborhood and Mayola are two very talented bands that have risen in popularity across the state. In the two years since this explosive beginning, The Neighborhood has matured into a successful young band with a loyal fanbase and a captivating live show. Their experimental rock with energetic dance beats will get you on your feet! For more information: Mayola has a wide variety of musical influences that set their music apart from other experimental rock bands. They love music and their passion can be heard in their music and seen in their live performances. Their creative lyrics and fast beats combine for some of the best music coming out of Oklahoma right now. For more information: ;It promises to be an exciting night of music, free food, and fun! - OSU Student Union Activites Board- Febuary 2007

"Stillwater artists blow into Norman"

3 p.m.: Adam Kemp reviews Mayola
A gigantic man blocked my view.
I shuffled in front of a speaker and quickly realized Mayola is the loudest band at NMF.
Mayola’s energy during its live show is infectious; every band member has his own character while performing. Bass guitarist Antonio Laster’s quirky movements are purely entertaining.
While the band finished with “Everybody,” one fan developed a fever and grabbed drummer Madden Humphrey’s cowbell and drumstick and went to town. -


NEW ALBUM - (sometime 2009)

Everybody - 2008

I still like being killed - 2006

I like being killed - 2005



Mayola is a band with an ever evolving sound, with influences from the most experimental rock and roll to traditional western and folk it is nothing short of an experience.

The honest and sometimes apocalyptic themes of the songs always focus on the "bigger picture" and sum up the story in hooks that are easy to sing along with. Live Mayola has been said to give the feeling of a mad carnival full of energy and passion. You can see that they are moved by the music they are playing and love sharing it with you.

Having played many shows in the mid-west, Mayola has made a good name for themselves opening for acts such as Joan of Arc, Split Lip Rayfield, Ludo, The Ataris, The Forecast and many others.

Mayola has also been awarded the Woody Guthrie award from the Oklahoma Gazette for the Peoples Choice of 2007.

Post-Apocalyptic Country 'n Western Rock 'n Roll