Chicago Farmer plays Mid-Western folk music celebrating the work ethic and community support of the small towns dotting the flatlands. As the musical persona of Cody Diekhoff, his roots in a tiny town form a strong foundation for the art he continues to create as he has moved back and forth across Illinois, to Chicago and back, repeatedly–moving 12 times in 10 years! “Backenforth” consequently, is the mythical town that holds together the songs in his current record, Backenforth, IL. He was not escaping his small town early on, as much as he was being launched into the wider world with all 25 of the residents behind him.
Relocating inspires Chicago Farmer to write, hence his frequent moving as he developed his songwriting and performing. After a decade as a folk musician playing the upper Mid-West circuit, his new album is the one that he hopes will bring his songs to wider audiences. With lyrics that play well to a barroom singalong, yet have a depth of reflection on the regular life of hard-working people that can easily be overlooked, Chicago Farmer’s music focuses on accessible folk songs.
With influences ranging from Hank Williams to Great American Taxi, Chicago Farmer has logged thousands of miles and hours honing his songs. For Backenforth, IL, he gathered his Hired Hands band, and recorded in affordable sessions, one or two songs at a time, then he would hit the road to earn some money, return and record another song or two, and repeat until the album was finished. For the first decade as a musician, Chicago Farmer was a full DIY solo venture, but he has recently added both management and a booking agent, freeing him up to play and write. One of the biggest advantages to finding management for him, was knowing that someone else with knowledge of the business always “has his back.”
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