PK Mayo brings the blues and guitar riffs to the CSU

The Serendipity Music Series at Minnesota State University, Mankato continues to offer mid-day performances for the campus that shed light on Minnesota musicians with “street-corner serenade” style performances. 

During his performance last Thursday in the Centennial Student Union Hearth Lounge  Paul “PK Mayo” Mayasich, a Minnesota Blues Hall of Fame singer and songwriter, was joined by bass player John Wright, where the two played in the afternoon as many students and staff enjoyed their lunch while listening to the music. 

However, this is not his first performance at MNSU. Mayo had previously performed his original song “Vidalia, Georgia” back in his 2018 Serendipity Music Series performance. 

Influenced by the blues, Mayo also appeals to a wide range of music lovers of all genres. His unique sounds include his rich vocals and guitar tones, as his love for the slide guitar is long lasting. 

Mayo has been playing the guitar since he was 12-years-old and fell in love with the guitar ever since his first concert in 1976.

“I saw Bonnie Raitt when I was in fifth grade and it made me want to play the guitar. It was a small concert, around 250 people, and it was my first live show I saw and made me want to play slide guitar. To this day she is still one of my favorites,” Mayo explained. 

Coming from a family of seven siblings that are very musically inclined Mayo has been inspired by music his whole life.

“When I write songs it is usually early in the morning before the day gets in your head and it looks like lots of pieces of paper all over the place with ideas written on it. Sometimes it’s a song title and other times a line in the song, or I’ll sit down and a melody will start with a chord progression,” Mayo expressed. 

“Very rare that it happens all at once, I usually write the lyrics and the music simultaneously.”

The biggest advice he could give to students who are passionate about music or wanting to start making music themselves was to be true to yourself. 

“Be yourself and find your voice because you can buy all the equipment your heroes have, the same amplifiers and guitars, but you’ll never become them. You can take things from their spirit of playing, but if you don’t have your own voice and style, it’ll never work,” Mayo said.

Upcoming, Mayo and Wright will have a new record to be released later this summer as well as many outdoor shows as the summer season is just around the corner. 

You can find more information online about future events at www.pkmayo.com.

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