Songwriter Werner to celebrate rural life at Warren Center concert

Published: Thursday, Sept. 26, 2013 10:31 a.m. CDT

GREENFIELD — Musician, songwriter and Iowa farm girl Susan Werner will bring a musical celebration of rural life to Warren Cultural Center in Greenfield 7 p.m. Oct. 10.

“The Hayseed Project” explores the language, livelihood, characters and concerns of American farmers. Werner’s compositions include folk, jazz and pop.

Tickets for the premier performance are on sale now at Ed & Eva’s store, 154 Public Square, Greenfield, by calling 641-743-2566, or online at

Werner grew up on a family farm in eastern Iowa, where her parents still farm, and in “Hayseed” she returns to the language and characters she knows best. Her songwriting abilities have been compared to the likes of Bob Dylan, Jimmy Webb and Paul Simon. Performing with a backup combo, Werner delivers songs on the subject matter of farming, rural America, locavores, food safety and the comic potential of herbicides.

“I’m not a farmer,” Werner writes. “I lack these two essentials: know-how and patience. But with some know-how as a writer and musician, I hope I can honor the people and the place that raised me, help secure a sustainable future for farmland and farming, and entertain a whole lotta people, too.”

For the “Hayseed” tour, Werner has partnered with Practical Farmers of Iowa (Ames), Midwest Organic and Sustainability Education Service (Wisconsin) and The Land Institute (Kansas), who will receive a portion of the ticket sales for the tour.

Adair County’s connection to the land will also be featured during the evening program. Plans include a short presentation by Kathleen Delate, ISU Extension organic specialist, highlighting organic projects at the Neely-Kinyon Research Farm near Greenfield. Locally-grown foods will be available (as the harvest permits). Area FFA chapters will also display their activities.

Werner’s concert is the second event in the Warren Cultural Center’s 2013-14 premier performance series, which brings nationally touring acts to the stage of the restored 1896 Warren Opera House. 

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