Paul Mayasich
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Paul Mayasich

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"Paul Mayasich"

Paul Mayasich and the Benderheads took to the mainstage like a musical storm surge. The musical, bluesical, incantations of the BENDERHEADS can still be heard echoing in the hidden coves of Lake Okabena.
The Unvarnished Music Festival
-Worthington Windsurfing Regatta- U.S. Windsurfing-National Race Tour Event. - Worthington Daily Globe

"I Love Your Soup: Get the can opener out"

Get The Can Opener Out, (03/14/07)
This soup pot has an interesting mix of vegetables from Chicago Blues, Texas Blues, southern Rock, samba rhythms, and boogie Blues. The opening title track is an instrumental song that nods to the Allman Brothers with the tasty slide work. The vocal chorus of "I love your soup" is odd and entertaining at the same time. But who am I to question their taste buds? "Tell Me" and "Devil's Face" both have a dark, evil vibe. The guitar tones get murkier than the Mississippi River and percussion is haunting and tantalizing.
Muddy Waters' "I Can't Be Satisfied" has a simple sound harkening back to the days of the earlier Muddy career. This is a solid recording of the song, but nothing more. The slide guitar again has a good tone and grits n' grinds when it has to, with hints of Elmore James and Hound Dog Taylor, as well as Duane Allman. "Texas Toast" brings out the boogie beat with the guitar tone heading towards the Texas tumbleweeds.
The second half of the disc has a different taste to it. The vocals on "Watch Out Boy" remind me of Bob Seger. The song is a slow ballad that leans to the singer-songwriter vein of music. Mayasich's vocals sound really good here. The other songs he sings with his voice either distorted or a little scratchy, but here it is clean and shows another side to him. Clocking in at over nine minutes is the slow Blues burner "Arms of the Blues." Mayasich's vocals are tailored to this style of song. A little grit and a little spit shine. The perfect blend between what has been heard so far on the album. Here the tone is set for a smoky bar in the wee hours of the morning when it's time for that slow dance.
The Texas influence comes out on "Good Man Blues." This song could have been recorded on an Antone's Records release just as easy. The song has a shuffle beat and a steady walking bass line.
If any of the evil vibe before worried you, just wait, the next track is an instrumental slide guitar reading of "Amazing Grace." This is a song played with plenty of feeling and inflections of bass and percussion that accentuate the guitar parts very well. The song is played with great care and no fireworks, just smooth sailing across that heavenly plane.
The closing track, "Black Coffee," has more of an older Blues feel to it. Mayasich takes the vocals and plays with them singing in a true Minnesotan accent. The music is subtle and very understated. "Black Coffee" hits eight minutes and closes things out in a quiet manner.
Paul Mayasich brings out some different styles and approaches for each song. There aren't any soft spots on the album and the song order is very interesting. Most people would have mixed the slower tracks in with the hotter tracks. Instead, the first half is hotter and darker while the second half is cooler and calmer. The ending is rather peaceful when the beginning was more raucous. I like the order they used, it shows the depth of the band.
Speaking of the band, they create rhythms that propel each song along and never over step their bounds. Jeff Wright supplies the bass without wasting notes. Jeff Rogers is the drummer and leaves room for Scott Sansby to add percussion throughout. I will give Rogers a lot of credit because most drummers can't lay back like he does leaving the room for a percussionist. Sansby adds in rhythms that give some songs, like "I Can't Be Satisfied," a Latin-esque rhythm by adding the congas.
I Love Your Soup is an entertaining ride through Paul Mayasich's music. The cover art has a Betty Paige action figure posing with a soup can for a photo. This adds to the oddities on the album. This is a quirky band that would be fun live. The record has a lot of character and some great restraint by these musicians.
Kyle M. Palarino is a contributing editor at BluesWax - Blues Wax

"Records put Paul Mayasich at the top of the list of slide guitarists"

This record and 2002’s "Where You Been" put Paul Mayasich at the top of the list of slide guitarist. It’s easy to point to Sonny Landreth, Ry Cooder, and Bonnie Raitt as the masters, but Mayasich’s playing on cuts like “How Can a Poor Man Stand Such Times and Live” put him firmly in contention, as well as with past masters like Duane Allman and Lowell George. His sound is big and full, with the plaintive cry every slide player should have. The gospel-tinged “Be An Angel” features his skills on acoustic and electric slide, and both are powerful. “Lonely Time” has the kind of nasty slide one associates with the rock players that delve into the skill. And more importantly for a slide player, it always adds to the song.
His playing without the slide is pretty good, too. Check out the “Nawlins” feel on “Bottle Up and Go,” where he traded fours with the piano and fires off a blistering solo out. His solo on the title cut is the height of soul and taste. A bit of tremolo and a sound that matches the desperation of his vocal. There’s also plenty of funk to go around. The hard, heavy funk of “Roll With the Punches” ends with a raucous solo by Mayasich. And he pays tribute to one of the slide masters with a cover of Ry Cooder’s “Down In Hollywood.” But the cool 9th-chord slides might bring to mind Blow by Blow-era Jeff Beck as much as they do Ry.
Mayasich’s vocals match his playing. He’s full of soul, and it can’t help but come out. Whether it’s a gruff growl on cuts like the slow “Troubled Blues,” or the soulman persona of “That Man,” Mayasich more than ably handles vocals. Rogers on drums, John Wright on bass and Scott Miller on keyboards assist with this fine set of music – JH - Vintage Guitar/August 2005

"Mayasich's CD release show"

I don't choose to post here often, but had the opportunity to attend Paul Mayasich with the Benderheads CD release party at Famous Dave's Friday night. Two long sets of high quality music, with the second set featuring a horn section that Paul has played with in the past. Wow! No artist probably ever hones their craft to it's ultimate level, but I believe Paul is getting close. If you like gritty slide guitar, at its finest, you'll love his new CD "Times Is Hard", An excellent disk of original music peppered with several great covers. I have to confess that Paul was not on my radar screen until about two years ago when I stumbled on him at, I think, WJ. I had probably seen him repeatedly with the Rhythm Doctors, Blue Chamber & Downright Tight, but it never registered. Local or not, a truly talented musician! Do yourself a favor and pick up this new release; you won't be disappointed!

Gentleman Jim - Blues on Stage


Paul Mayasich has 4 CDs:
Where You Been?
Times is Hard
I Love Your Soup
Dough Bros: Paul Mayasich & Andy Dee



This trio is a force to be reckoned with, Paul Mayasich on slide guitar along with Jonny Lang's former rhythm section of Billy Thommes and Billy Franze, complete the trio. Think Allman Brothers meets Little Feat meets Roy Buchanan with some Hendrix thrown in and you will have some idea of this band's influences.