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By Peter Lillis


Chicago’s Haley Fohr contains multitudes.

Of late, she’s performing and living as Jackie Lynn, a freewheelin’ kraut-rockin’ drifter from Franklin, TN who finds her way to Chicago and comes to lead a cocaine kingdom out of an auto-body shop with her partner, Tom.

Concurrently, she’s Circuit Des Yeux, a powerful art-folk project with an excellent Thrill Jockey Records 2015 debut, In Plain Speech.

In either form, her unique approach to songwriting always shines through.

Jackie Lynn plays this Tuesday at Songbyrd, with Ancestral Duo (ft. JD Parran) and Flash Frequency. We caught up with the artist over email this weekend. Check it out below, and buy tickets here.


How does your approach to Jackie Lynn differ from your approach to Circuit Des Yeux? How would you describe the feeling of living an alternate life?

Jackie is a truncated idea I formed. I think she is in all of us.

Has the critical response to the Jackie Lynn project caused you to rethink your previous approach to performing and/or writing? Were you concerned that different personas may confuse audiences?

My job is to make art, not sell it. I try to follow my intuition as closely as possible.

Do you have a background in writing fiction? Do you have more characters and/or character arcs you’d like to write and perform?

I don’t have a background in fiction nor any other characters.

Where does the applause at the end of “Chicken Picken” come from? How do samples like that help tell the story of Jackie Lynn?

It’s a sample we found on Google.com.

I read that you collaborated with members of Bitchin’ Bajas on the Jackie Lynn project, one of my favorite Chicago bands, along with Cave. How did that collaboration come along? Did you collaborate with anyone else in this project? Anyone else you’d like to collaborate with in the future?

We are close friends. Marisa Anderson plays on it, too. I hope to collaborate more in the future.

How do you like working with Thrill Jockey records? How does your music fit within that label’s legacy?

I feel supported, which is nice.

What can show-goers expect from this Tuesday’s show at Songbyrd?

Live music.