Americana Music Fest

Americana Music Fest

Be a part of the first annual Americana Music Fest at Acorn Theater! This will be an evening celebrating great music and fun featuring four national and local bands. Music includes headliner Chicago Farmer (featuring a full rocking band), plus Americana rocker, Ryan Joseph Anderson, The Blisters (featuring Spencer Tweedy) and the soulful duo, Monte Pride & Vanessa Gerber… VIP Meet & Greet before the show includes show, a drink and an awesome screen print poster. Help us kick this new festival off with a bang by spreading the word of the fest to all of your friends.

Plan ahead and purchase your tickets before June 1 for a $5 discount.

Chicago Farmer, the moniker Bloomington, Illinois’ Cody Diekhoff performs and writes under, is set to independently release his 7th album, Midwest Side Stories, on September 30, 2016. Midwest Side Stories is about hope, depression, job loss, meth, skateboards, a divided nation, used cars, the late shift, farms, factories, the destruction of our environment, and still being around to sing about it. The new release contains ten tracks all of which were written by Diekhoff (pronounced dee-cough), with the exception of the John Hartford classic “I'm Still Here.”

Folk hero Todd Snider says, "I love Chicago Farmer's singing and playing and songs, but it's the intention behind the whole of his work that moves me to consider him the genuine heir to Arlo Guthrie or Ramblin' Jack Elliott. He knows the shell game that goes on under folk music… which is sacred to me. Chicago Farmer is my brother; if you like me, you'll love him."

Lyrically driven, Chicago Farmer delves into the social and political issues of today’s world, taking it all in and putting it back out through music as a commentary on modern times in the Midwest. With his unfeigned and relatable approach, Chicago Farmer has earned a place in the heart of this generation’s rise of protest songs. He composes music written and sung by and for the working man, the "regular person", bringing to mind modern day folk tales.

Ryan Joseph Anderson

Ryan Joseph Anderson is an established Chicago songwriter working on a new solo project inspired by country blues and psychedelic folk. For five years, Anderson has fronted the Chicago rock band Go Long Mule. He has produced both records by Go Long Mule, 2011's Kissing The Gunner's Daughter and the forthcoming Albion (2013), and has worked on projects with Rambos, Michele McGuire, Matthew Francis Andersen, Julie Meckler and Tom Schraeder. Anderson is currently at work on his debut solo studio album.

The Blisters are Henry Mosher (vocals, guitar), Spencer Tweedy (drums), Hayden Holbert (guitar) and Tory P-Lopez (bass). Formed in 2002, The Blisters have spent more than a decade together—from age seven to twenty-one—playing shows in their hometown of Chicago and across the country. Their sophomore album, Cured, was released in 2016.

Monte Pride & Vanessa Gerber

Monte Pride
Monte Pride is a Michigan-born, Michigan-based folk singer-songwriter and fingerstyle guitarist. His rich tenor voice and accomplished guitar technique make him sound older than his years, but the enthusiasm he brings to the music and performance is all youthful, impassioned, and healing energy. His powerful ability to communicate wholeheartedly shines through in his writing, every phrase weaving and winding to form a complex array of soul stirring song. Monte draws inspiration from long-time trailblazing musicians like Paul Simon, Joni Mitchell, and Nick Drake, along with contemporary folk genre-benders like The Tallest Man On Earth, The Avett Brothers, and Frontier Ruckus.
Monte has been performing in Michigan for the past five years, since he was a senior in high-school, growing a solid local and regional following. He has provided support for notable touring acts including The Cactus Blossoms, Rocky Votolato, Mutual Benefit, The Bones of JR Jones, and Florist, along with Michigan favorites like The Ragbirds, Gifts of Creatures, Timothy Monger, Sam Corbin, Watching for Foxes, Less is More, and The Rupple Brothers.
In addition to his musical ventures, Monte began giving back to his local Lansing community in Summer 2017, solely organizing the First Annual “Songs for Sustainability” Festival in Old Town Lansing, held in the Old Town General Store’s courtyard. It focused on building and engaging community, and celebrating the importance of environmental awareness and sustainable practice around music. The event was free, with all encouraged donations benefiting “Music is the Foundation”, a local non-profit that funds local music programs in schools and the community, bringing instruments and joy to those who may not have opportunities otherwise.

Vanessa Gerber
While born in Oak Park, Illinois and maintaining strong family ties to the Midwest, Vanessa Gerber has spent most of her life in the San Francisco Bay Area. Growing up exploring the rolling hills and hidden valleys, windblown beaches and community farmers’ markets, Vanessa finds deep connection to and appreciation of both the landscape and music that has come from artists who’ve experienced it, too – most notably, Bonnie Raitt, Janis Joplin, and the Grateful Dead. Vanessa has been playing guitar since she was 9 years old and attributes the growth and development of her musicianship both to a wonderful mentor, Danny Click, and to the incredible music program at her high school that empowered student bands to create their own identity and curate a repertoire of songs for each semester’s concert series; students, families and teachers all pile into the theater for the shows and dancing in the aisles as the bands rocked the house. Playing and writing with the same band for four years as the sole guitarist enabled Vanessa to both build a solid foundation and hone detail and personal style, both in rhythm and leads.
While Vanessa’s musical background is largely grounded in blues and roots music, she now plays and writes mostly folk and country, citing everyone from Robert Johnson and Keb Mo’ to Guy Clark and Gillian Welch as inspirations and influences. After nearly ten years of playing and writing exclusively instrumental, Vanessa truly found her voice six years ago and has been finding a lot of joy in exploring and strengthening it, as well as writing lyrics and songs that suit her sweet tone with hints of both country and blues. Playing music, over the last year, has become largely a ‘nights and weekends’ endeavor, inviting friends from across San Francisco over to jam, playing for friends and family, and finding the occasional open mic. During the day, otherwise, Vanessa works in clean energy finance, where she is deeply committed to her role in improving the sustainability of the built environment.

Connected by the Montana wilderness…
Monte Pride & Vanessa Gerber are a pair of two similar artists coming together from the coast of the mighty Pacific to the coast of great Lake Michigan to play an ‘in-the-round’ style set, trading songs and stories. The two connected as a result of Vanessa’s summers working for the U.S. Forest Service in the Bob Marshall Wilderness where she not only worked on a trail crew and played a ton of guitar out in the Montana woods, but also made strong friendships with the amazing folks also working out there… one of whom is Monte’s girlfriend, Tess! Having seen and heard Monte’s music through Tess, Vanessa reached out to Monte about this particular show dedicated to Americana music. Sharing a similar musical taste, environmental ethos, and particular admiration for Lyle Lovett and his “An Evening With…” guest tours, it’s no surprise the two connected as musicians and look forward to playing their own set in the ‘style of Lyle.’

$25 - $50


Who’s Going

Upcoming Events
Acorn Theater

  • Sorry, there are currently no upcoming events.