Chicago Farmer | Chicago Reader

Chicago Farmer

94 minutes 2012

Singer-songwriter Cody Diekhoff was raised in downstate Delavan, Illinois, before moving to Wicker Park in the 90s and coming up with the stage name Chicago Farmer; the dichotomy between big city and small town is the theme of this concert video as well, though Diekhoff and filmmaker Cory Poplin don't have enough to say about it to ward off monotony. Diekhoff plies his reedy tenor, buzzing steel-string guitar, and wry observations in 17 songs at the Peoria Theater, his pleasant performance punctuated by modest and unrevealing interview sequences in a bar and a car (the two locations where folkies spend about 95 percent of their professional lives). The movie reminds me of that famous Leadbelly couplet "Sometimes I live in the country, sometimes I live in town / Sometimes I has a great notion to jump into the river an' drown," but without the drama of the second line.

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