Soul’d Out Music Festival

Genre-spanning musical artists converge in Portland each April for this annual festival.

ErykahBaduGrammy-winning singer-songwriter Erykah Badu will headline the 2018 Soul'd Out Festival.
Frans Schellekens/Redferns/Getty Images

Whether you’re a lifelong soul fan or a casual listener on the hunt for your new favorite band, Portland’s Soul’d Out Music Festival has plenty to offer any audience. Founded in 2010, the annual music festival aspires to unite music lovers of all generations and provide a platform for artists often overlooked by the commercial industry.

“Soulful, uplifting music, recreated in the live setting, is one of the most healing and profound means of expression humanity has,” explain the festival’s founders. “This music is the most effective tool of bringing about positive social evolution. We offer this festival as the beginning of a new movement towards realizing music’s inherent healing and transformative qualities, and as a means of applying these qualities directly in our ever-expanding community.”

Soul’d Out Music Festival 2018

Soul’d Out returned April 18–22, 2018 for its ninth iteration, bringing jazz, funk, electronic, fusion and hip-hop artists from around the world to Portland’s coolest venues. Headliners included Erykah Badu, the “godmother of soul,” as well as big names like De La Soul, Wyclef Jean and legendary NOLA Superstars Rebirth Brass Band.

West African guitar master Lionel Loueke introduced audiences to the harmonic complexities of African jazz for two performances during the festival, while the Huntertones’ high-energy, horn-driven tunes kept feet tapping late into the night. Local artists included singer-songwriter Christopher Worth, who’s know for his unique style of bohemian blues, and Portland-based electronic artist Natasha Kmeto, who spun tunes at Holocene that blur the lines between RnB, soul and dance music.

Jazz lovers attended the shows at favorite venues around Portland, including the glamorous Arlene Schnitzer Concert HallWonder BallroomDoug Fir Lounge, Crystal BallroomStar Theater, Dante’s, the Roseland and Mississippi Studios, as well as funk havens Goodfoot Lounge and Holocene.



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