For the past three years, the Soul’d Out Music Festival has been bringing some of the best Jazz, Soul, Funk and R&B music in the world to Portland. Soul’d Out is held in venues throughout the city, encouraging attendees to branch out to new venues and neighborhoods. This year’s festival boasts a fantastic assortment of music for your listening pleasure…here are our picks:
Tuesday, April 17th – Jon Cleary’s Philthy Phew @ Dante’s – 8 PM
The accomplished singer-songwriter makes a rare Portland appearance with his new band. Cleary was born in England, but has spent the past 20+ years in New Orleans. He’s played with Bonnie Rait, Dr. John, BB King and more. His appearance at the Soul’d Out Festival is a must for any fan of New Orleans music.
Saturday, April 21 – Will Bernard Trio @ the Goodfoot Lounge – 9:00 PM
Guitarist Will Bernard knows how to lay down a groove. His aesthetic could be compared to that of Medeski, Martin and Wood, but Bernard is more than just another purveyor of the jam-groove-band sound. He’s got serious Jazz chops…and with Wil Blades joining him on the Hammond B-3 organ, his performance in Portland should be a really fun experience.
Sunday, April 22 – Snarky Puppy @ The Wonder Ballroom – 8:30 PM
Snarky Puppy are on the rise. Coming from the deep south, the core of the group formed at the famed Jazz program at University of North Texas. The famed collective, featuring some 30+ members on their recordings, is now based in Brooklyn. Led by award-winning bassist/composer Michael League, Snarky Puppy delivers raw funk and sensitive dynamics, relentless pocket and lyrical melodicism, lush harmony and soulful simplicity, and most importantly, a delicate mixture of composition and improvisation.
Monday, April 23 – Dr. Lonnie Smith @ Mississippi Studios 7:30 PM
Working with celebrated Jazz luminaries like Lou Donaldson and Rahsaan Roland Kirk in the early 1960′s – Dr. Lonnie Smith’s piano playing and Hammond B-3 organ stylings provided the foundation for the sub-genre that would become known as Soul Jazz. He makes his third appearance during the festival this year, making him a sort of “resident artist” for Soul’d Out.
Wednesday, April 25 – Esperanza Spalding @ The Crystal Ballroom, 8:00 PM
The grand finale of the festival this year features Portland’s favorite home-grown talent. Esperanza Spalding is much more than a bassist and vocalist – she’s a musical force of nature. Her new record, Radio Music Society is a new sort of Jazz Fusion and debuted at the top of both the Jazz and Pop music charts. She makes her Portland debut with this new recording on the 25th. A perfect way to round out the festival!