While food may be the way to the heart, music is definitely the pathway to one’s soul. The birthplace of enthralling art forms as jazz, the blues, country, soul and rock and roll, the United States of America is a country in thrall to music. So, on your next trip to the United States, follow the music through these 3 destinations.
New Orleans, Louisiana: All Things Jazz
Always a hotbed of music and dance, New Orleans’ Creole, African, French and Spanish cultures contributed to the birth of jazz. Visit the New Orleans Jazz Museum for a comprehensive collection of musical artifacts. Stroll along vibrant Frenchmen Street, listening for tunes floating out of venues such as The Spotted Cat Music Club and Three Muses. Preservation Hall and Little Gem Saloon are two more must-visit places for jazz history and top-notch live acts. Visit in late April and early May to attend the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival.
Memphis, Tennessee: The Birthplace of Rock ‘n’ Roll
The largest city in Tennessee, Memphis is a must-see destination for lovers of Elvis, music, history and barbecue. This vibrant and colorful destination offers everything from museums and galleries, to theatre and nightlife, and it is super easy to navigate by riverboat, trolley car or on foot. Continue to soak up the music history of Memphis with a visit to the Rock ‘n’ Soul Museum and the Stax Museum of American Soul Music.
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: Ain’t No Stopping Soul Now
Born and raised in the City of Brotherly Love, preacher Solomon Burke was one of soul’s founding fathers, the forerunner to show-stoppers like James Brown – and credited with first describing the music as “soul.” If you want to get back to the roots of soul, in a small space, try the South Kitchen & Jazz Parlor. The Fillmore Philadelphia often has soul-inspired performers as does Temple University’s Liacouras Center, formerly known as The Apollo of Temple, hosting shows by Alicia Keys and Patti LaBelle. Even the city’s arena league football team is called, of course, Philadelphia Soul.