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Keeping thier roots deep

AVA Amphitheatre
Tucson, AZ
October 9, 2021

Article and photos by Mary Andrews

Even though Midland is a country rock trio based out of Texas, the band has deep roots in Tucson, Arizona. So much so that they seem to have an annual revival at Casino del Sol's AVA Amphitheatre. 2020 was an exception only because of the pandemic. This year certainly made up for last year's absence with two days of sold out shows at the 4500-person capacity venue.

Midland is a three man band with Mark Wystrach on lead vocals and guitar, Jess Carson guitarist and songwriter, and Cameron Duddy, guitar and vocals. Wystrach grew up on a ranch near Tucson with his parents owning a live country music venue.

Duddy is also a music video director having won an MTV Video Music Award for a Bruno Mars music video. He also directed the music video for their first hit record, "Drinkin' Problem."

A raucous crowd greeted the band when they opened the show with "Playboys" followed by "This Old Heart" and "Burn Out." The fans were standing, excited and happy to hear the raw versions of the band's big hits.

Wystrach addressed the crowd early in the show relating how difficult it was to get that first big break. It all seemed to come together for the band after they spent time on a ranch close to the Texas border as they wrote new music. Many songs performed were from their initial release On the Rocks.

The guys were not dressed in their often adopted "Nudie suits' but still had model-like nuance in appearance with a relaxed demeanor. It was fun live music with smooth sounds and great harmonies. Wystrach reached out to the crowd like they were his long, lost friends.

They played new songs from their newly released EP The Last Resort that included "Sunrise Tells the Story" "Two to Two Step," and "Adios Cowboy." Their Eagles-Like harmonies were hard to beat.

The five-song encore at the end of the show was a great wrap to the one and a half plus hour of live music. "Drinkin' Problem," "All is Forgiven," "Fourteen Gears," "Spanish Guitarmony," and "Dancing in the Dark" (Bruce Springsteen cover) all hit their marks. After the long live music draught, it was a pleasure to experience Midland's live show.

Midland setlist for Tucson.
Midland Midland Midland
Midland Midland

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