The schedule of events for the evening – 8pm Shiny and The Spoon, 9pm Hickory Robot, 10pm Chicago Farmer, 11:30pm The Tillers.
Shiny and The Spoon Bio
Formed in 2008, Shiny and the Spoon quickly established itself as one of the most intimate and honest folk acts in the Midwest. Videos of living room performances gained viral status, while a tightly knit group of fans packed performances in listening rooms and local “dive” bars.
The past year has been their most momentous to date, with the addition of veterans Pete Brown and Matt Frazer, and release of their first full-length album: Ferris Wheel, produced by Afghan Whigs’ John Curley. The band has quickly moved from back rooms to bandstands throughout the Midwest, retaining the same unadorned simplicity and tightly wound harmonies as before. With a clever ease and lack of airs, Shiny and the Spoon, is quickly becoming one of the most exciting and broadly accessible folk acts performing today.
Hickory Robot Bio
Hickory Robot hail from the fertile acoustic soil of Cincinnati, Ohio. The original trio of guitarist Jim Pelz, mandolinist Scott Carnder, and fiddler Lauren Schloemer came together in 2008 and by 2010 had released an album of critically-praised originals entitled “Firefly”. In 2011 bassist Mike Georgin completed the quartet and a year of constant gigging resulted in a large regional following and a Cincinnati Entertainment Award nomination for Best Bluegrass Band.
In October of 2012 the band released their 2nd album, “Sawyer”, to even greater acclaim, and a Cincinnati Entertainment Award nomination not only for Best Bluegrass Band for the 2nd year in a row, but also for Album of the Year. Citybeat Magazine’s summation: “stellar songwriting”;
Chicago Farmer Bio
Chicago Farmer sings on the title track of Backenforth, IL, released on January 22, 2013. It’s the centerpiece of his sixth collection of Guthrie-inspired populist songs, as well as autobiographical. The son of a small town farming community, Cody Diekhoff logged plenty of highway and stage time under the name Chicago Farmer before settling in the city in 2003. Profoundly inspired by fellow mid-westerner John Prine, he’s a working-class folk musician to his core. His small town roots, tilled with city streets mentality, are turning heads North and South of I-80.
Backenforth, IL is also about finding your place in life – that sweet spot where we all belong. “I love the energy, music, and creativity of Chicago, but at the same time, the roots and hard work of my small town,” he shares. Growing up in Delavan, IL with a population less than 2,000, Diekhoff’s grandparents were farmers, and their values have always provided the baseline of his songs.
The Tillers Bio
The Tillers got their start in August 2007 when they started thumping around with some banjos and guitars and a big wooden bass. Their earliest gigs were for coins and burritos on the city’s famous Ludlow Street in the district of Clifton. The songs they picked were mostly older than their grandparents. Some came from Woody Guthrie, some were southern blues laments, and many were anonymous relics of Appalachian woods, churches, riverboats, railroads, prairies, and coal mines.
Their look didn’t fit the stereotype. They were clearly recovering punk rockers with roots in city’s west side punk rock and hardcore scene. The punk influence gave their sound a distinctive bite, setting them apart from most other folk acts- a hard-driving percussive strum and stomp that brought new pulse and vinegar to some very old songs. But their musical range soon proved itself as they floated from hard-tackle thumping to tender graceful melody, all the while topped by Oberst and Geil’s clear tenor harmonies.
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Festival Contact – Scott Preston – cincygroove@