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Grammy-nominated country band Midland to play in Cambridge next week

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Midland. Picture: Harper Duddy
Midland. Picture: Harper Duddy

One of the hottest acts in music right now, 2018 has been another monumental year for the Texas-based trio.

Midland. Picture: Seth Hellman/Big Machine Label Group
Midland. Picture: Seth Hellman/Big Machine Label Group

Basking in the glory of their stunning debut album, 2017’s On the Rocks, the group were nominated for two Grammy Awards in January, three Country Music Association Awards (CMAs) at last week’s ceremony in Nashville, and appeared at this year’s annual C2C Festival in March at the O2 in London.

As well as being nominated at the CMAs, Midland – Mark Wystrach, Jess Carson and Cameron Duddy – gave a well-received rendition of East Bound and Down, from the 1977 film Smokey and the Bandit, in honour of the movie’s late star, Burt Reynolds, who died in September.

Duddy, 34, who is also an experienced music video director – having worked with the likes of Bruno Mars, Jennifer Lopez and Britney Spears – told the Cambridge Independent: “We’ve been up to a lot of things, lots going on...

“The CMAs were a big deal for us this year – we were nominated for three awards and got the opportunity to perform a little song, which was a pretty huge undertaking for us.

Midland. Picture: Adam Moroz
Midland. Picture: Adam Moroz

“That’s a Jerry Reed song and it’s one of the greatest guitar solos ever written, so we wanted to pay homage to that song and do it justice, but also make it our own. We’re really proud of having pulled that off – we were pretty nervous going into it.”

These fine purveyors of traditional country music – whose phenomenal debut single, Drinkin’ Problem, propelled them to stardom in 2017 – will be on stage at The Junction on Wednesday, November 28.

Duddy revealed that a new album should be out “in the first few months of next year.” He also noted that it was always their intention to try and crack the UK market.

“We love coming out there – the fans are great,” he enthused, “so we’ll keep coming back as long as they keep coming to the shows.”

Midland. Picture: Seth Hellman/Big Machine Label Group
Midland. Picture: Seth Hellman/Big Machine Label Group

Duddy added: “We have a couple of new songs that we’ve thrown in the set, album cuts from On the Rocks, and we do a few covers. We try and keep the sets fresh so we’re not playing the same set two nights in a row.”

On the Rocks yielded three hit singles, with the third, Burn Out – which boasted a particularly memorable video – enjoying chart success in 2018.

The video, filmed at the famous Billy Bob’s in Fort Worth Texas – ‘the world’s largest honky tonk’ – beautifully evokes memories of Urban Cowboy, the classic, country music-themed film from 1980 starring John Travolta.

On what they’ve got coming up, Duddy said: “Touring, man, a lot of touring. We’ve got new music, more touring, more music videos – a lot of the same but just bigger.

Midland. Picture: Seth Hellman/Big Machine Label Group
Midland. Picture: Seth Hellman/Big Machine Label Group

“Next year we’re going to Australia – they’re doing a C2C out there so we’re going to be supporting Tim McGraw, and playing a handful of shows.”

The level of success that the three friends have achieved in a relatively short space of time has taken the singer/bass player by surprise.

“You don’t ever assume that you’re going to have success,” he said. “Of course you hope for it, but there’s no real way to imagine it until you’re in it – and we’re still a relatively new band.

“We’ve been playing together in bands for a decade but Midland is four years old, and it was only two years ago that we were still playing the honky tonks in Austin, down the street from my house.

“It’s a blessing. We’re very grateful for any opportunity to just continue to record music that we love and play it to the fans.”

Midland will be at The Junction’s J1 venue on Wednesday, November 28 at 7pm.

Tickets: £15.50 adv


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