Underscoring its role as a contemporary and historical center of American music, Memphis, Tennessee will host “Seven Days of Soul” June 16- 22, as part of the city’s year-long “50 Years of Soul” celebration.
The milestone commemorates the golden anniversaries of the founding of Stax Records, which pioneered the spare and punchy style of Otis Redding, Isaac Hayes, Booker T. & the MGs and countless other legends; and Royal Studios, which produced the achingly sweet intensity of Al Green and Ann Peebles, among others.
“Memphis is thrilled to present ‘Seven Days of Soul,'” said Kevin Kane, President of the Memphis Convention & Visitors Bureau. “We’re proud of our city’s ongoing legacy as a breeding ground for these timeless sounds and plan to pack all the excitement soul music has delivered over the past 50 years into one blockbuster week.”
The gala week will engage with an abundance of iridescent sights, sounds and attractions as well as special events inspired by the world’s most universally beloved style of music.
Otis ReddingBeale Street, the number one tourist attraction in the state of Tennessee with its wealth of restaurants, bars, hotels and shops, will function as the centerpiece for “Seven Days of Soul.” John Elkington, President and CEO of Performa Entertainment, which oversees the strip, said: “Everyone on the street will take part. This will be one amazing bash. The world has embraced our home-grown soul, and many of the artists who created it have become national treasures. ‘Seven Days of Soul’ will be a time to toast their incredible achievements and party in their honor.”
The nearby Gibson Guitar Factory will also host a soul performance series all week long, showcasing top R&B acts in its intimate lounge setting daily during “Seven Days of Soul.”
To complete the week, Concord Records will host a star-studded concert at Memphis’ Orpheum theater on June 22, beginning at 8 pm. The concert, benefiting the Stax Museum of American Soul Music and the Stax Music Academy, will feature contemporary and legendary Stax artists, including Isaac Hayes, Booker T. & the MGs, William Bell, Eddie Floyd, Mabel John, the Temprees, Rance Allen and The Reddings, a group consisting of Otis Redding’s sons Dexter and Otis II.
Memphis is known worldwide as the birthplace of popular music, attracting millions of international fans to the city’s many musical shrines. Attractions that capture this incredible legacy include the Stax Museum of American Soul Music, the Rock ‘n’ Soul Museum, the Gibson Guitar Factory, Sun Studios and Elvis Presley’s Graceland.