Chicago Farmer

When I saw the location for Rumble Down, I smiled. I wanted more of my family (kids and grandkids) to experience a small jam-grass festival. Four of the grandkids are multi-year Shoe Fest veterans but more of them need the experience and my tribe is all in the Springfield vicinity. The festival site, The Kampground, is within bicycling distance for one of my sons. This would be a bunch of first-time adventures for the family.

My heart was torn when I read that the John Hartford Memorial Festival would be in Springville, Indiana, not Bean Blossom, IN at the Bill Monroe Music Park. I love my little cabin in the woods at the Bill Monroe Music Park (BMMP). It has served us well for many adventures at the John Hartford Memorial Festival (JHMF). And it was reserved and paid for from June 1-5, 2022. ‘My’ cabin has beds, an air conditioner, mini fridge, microwave and sleeps four. We know how to set up to suit our tastes and keep dry.

You’ve been patiently waiting, and we’re tickled to finally announce the daily lineup and the sale of single day tickets. We’ve got over 30 bands and 45 sets of music over the course of four days. Entertainment will be spread out over three stages at our new venue in beautiful Springville, IN. Newgrass, Bluegrass, Jamgrass, Old Time and everything in between will soon be flowing through the campgrounds of the Lawrence County Recreational Park. Plan your festival adventure accordingly and as always expect a few surprises along the way.

FORE, the new EP from Chicago Farmer and the Fieldnotes will be available on Friday, March 4th 2022 for downloading and on all streaming platforms. The first batch of FOREPACK!!!! sold out, but Forty Four more have been added to the website which included the 4 song EP, two stickers, and a koozie for your non 13 dollar beers.

We’re tickled to announce the initial lineup for the 2022 festival taking place June 1-4 in Springville, IN. We’ve put together a superlative lineup that features many of the acts that were booked (and never performed) at the 2020 festival. We know this diverse lineup will appeal to bluegrass, newgrass, jamgrass and old time fans. At the center of our booking philosophy is the concept of putting together a roster of talent that is as eclectic and varied as the music of our festival namesake, John Hartford.

Let’s look at the creativity and courageousness exposing the truths, the deep meaning underfoot, like bugs after the rain, this past year has been insane. Rearranged and renamed, complaints unrestrained, this is the new normal. I’d wanted to write scripture about Shoe Fest, some sort of article of faith, a declaration of devotion to what made me fall in love with festivals in the first place… Alas, this is my iconoclast blast that shall be touted on Facebook groups across America, the finest in toilet reading material.

I was a real nowhere lass, sitting on my nowhere ass, making all my nowhere plans for nobody. Memorial Day weekend is supposed to be spent at Three Sisters Park in Chillicothe, IL for Summer Camp Music Festival. Two years without my big blowout weekend left me a real blind bat. I had feared when they announced an August attempt, would it even happen? Would it be safe? Would it be the same? I was unperceptive to what I used to consider my thing, my scene, festivals were my jam.

While post-pandemic etiquette is on a lot of folk’s minds, John Hartford Memorial Festival goers are a little different. 2020 ticket holders were refunded if they wanted but so many gave up the cost of their tickets to donate to the organization that 2021 turned into a modest camp out complete with 12 bands for free. Miles of silence and long days of dreary COVID but the faithful keep coming back to Bean Blossom.

Illinois-based Cody “Chicago Farmer” Diekhof paired up with Texas’ The Band of Heathens for Flyover Country, independently released February 7. With DJs across the country spinning many of the songs from the album, it is climbing up the Americana and Folk radio charts in an increasingly competitive landscape. In the past few  weeks the album shot up to #18 after debuting at #33 on the Americana Radio Albums Chart and is currently at #9 on the NACC Folk Radio Chart.

For recording artists, albums can be like children — it’s hard to go on record choosing one as a favorite. But Cody “Chicago Farmer” Diekhoff doesn’t hesitate to designate his forthcoming release, Flyover Country, as his “golden child.”

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