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Midland Share Their Unusual Road to Nashville

Frazer Harrison, Getty Images

Midland are one of the hottest young acts in Nashville, but they took an unusually circuitous route to get there.

The country trio consisting of Cameron Duddy, Jess Carson and Mark Wystrach come from very diverse backgrounds, with Duddy and Wystrach both veterans of the entertainment business in Los Angeles. Duddy is a noted video director who has helmed videos for Bruno Mars, Fifth Harmony and Jennifer Lopez, while Wystrach initially funded some of the band’s earliest efforts by appearing on the soap opera Passions.

“At the time I was negative in my bank balance, so I said sure, and it was a great experience,” he tells Taste of Country Nights. But he found that despite the money, the job just wasn’t creatively satisfying, so he got out of his contract, which resulted in the show staging a shower scene in the next episode in which his character was killed with no explanation.

The group went through some pretty hard financial times before they finally hooked up with a big-time manager and got a record deal. They also learned “how to avoid trouble and how to get out of trouble,” they say. Asked to cite an example of trouble, they laughingly say, “Getting arrested … helping to get your bandmate out of a choke hold by a six foot six … the guy that was the caretaker of the worst rehearsal space, it smelled just like urine, beer cans and garbage.”

Midland’s music is a tip of the hat to the California country of the 1970s. They released their self-titled debut EP in 2016. Their debut single, “Drinkin’ Problem,” is currently climbing the charts. Listen to their interview with Taste of Country Nights below.

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