Spotify Studios’ ‘Set it Straight’ an instant hit

Midland delve into country music’s tallest tales in new podcast

Midland bandmates Mark Wystrach, Jess Carson and Cameron Duddy dive into country music lore in ‘Set it Straight’.

Country stars Midland react to some of the most unbelievable tales of country music and interview the person involved in their podcast “Set it Straight” for Spotify Studios.

Was Tanya Tucker booed off of the Grand Ole Opry stage in 1978?

Did the songwriter responsible for Garth Brooks’ breakout hit “Friends in Low Places” trade his rights to the song for booze?

Midland bandmates Mark Wystrach, Jess Carson and Cameron Duddy have tackled these topics and more on the podcast. Each episode begins with the background of the incident, followed by an interview.

In a Spotify press release, the group explained their motivation, “Much of the inspiration behind Midland comes from our country music heroes and the legacy they’ve left for us to learn from,” the band continues, “Their tall tales are things of lore, and we are taking on the immense challenge of uncovering the truth and setting their stories straight.

The audio engineering of this podcast is exceptional. You can definitely tell this was not a podcast made on a whim in a living room.

The beginning background information is recorded in advance and engineered to sound like a cassette tape playing back. Whenever one of the hosts has a reaction, it sounds like someone presses pause on a tape player.

The background is also enriched with contextual sounds. If someone is said to have taken a swig of whiskey, you hear the cap unscrew and the liquid slosh forward in the bottle. If someone is speeding away on a dirt road, you hear the sound of gravel spraying the car’s body.

The audio engineering makes the podcast more engaging and immersive. You can picture what is happening much more vividly with the aid of these audio elements.

The first episode of “Set it Straight” hooks listeners with the stranger than fiction story of a burning a friend’s body in the desert. Midland talks with legendary road manager Phil Kaufman. Kaufman was the road manager for such superstar acts as The Rolling Stones, Emmylou Harris and Frank Zappa to name a few.

Oh, and he was in jail with Charles Manson before the Tate-LaBianca murders. That is not what the members of Midland want to talk to Kaufman about though.

Instead, they are interested in Kaufman stealing Gram Parsons’ body from the airport and setting it aflame in the Joshua Tree desert. Parsons’ was a member of The Byrds and The Flying Burrito Brothers as well as friends with Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards.

How could this be true? You’ll have to listen to the episode to find out.

New episodes of “Set it Straight” are released every Wednesday exclusively on Spotify.

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