Located nearly three hours south of Ireland’s capital city of Dublin, Cork is probably the last place where you will find people indulging in the sounds of soul music while enjoying a piece of sweet potato pie or a bowl of Black-eyed peas.
But all of that was made possible thanks to the vision of Karen Underwood, a notorious singer, writer, and storyteller from Chicago who has lived in Cork for more than two decades. The Chicago-born soul singer has amazed crowds at countless festivals, concerts, and shows with her unforgettable performance style. Underwood teamed up with Noreen Gannon of Gallagher’s Gastropub in 2015 to launch the event.
It’s the only festival of its kind in Ireland that brings a taste of the American South to the heart of Cork, all while focusing on African American culture and soul food. According to Underwood, Soul In The City is all about bringing soul music back to its grassroots and “celebrating our freedom, connection, and unity through music,” as she explains on the website.
Underwood has managed to attract Black artists from all over the world, including Velvin Lamont and Buck Taylor.
The fest gets bigger each year and is an example of how Cork, Ireland is developing a reputation as a great destination for music, food, and all things cultural.
For more information about the festival and to stay up-to-date on concert dates, visit the website.