Since 1988 the Porretta Soul Festival, a Tribute to Otis Redding has become the most prestigious European event entirely dedicated to rhythm & blues and soul music: and particularly to the Memphis Sound, the music school of the great Otis Redding, to whom the festival is dedicated.
Over the past 30 years the biggest names in soul have come to Porretta, many of them especially for the Festival on their first trip to Europe; others, authentic legends, were discovered in unknown spots in the Deep South of U.S.A. and introduced to the international public and press who spoke of the “miracle” of Porretta as the musical event of the year.
Rufus Thomas, Sam Moore (from Sam & Dave) , Booker T. & The MGs, The Memphis Horns, Percy Sledge, Solomon Burke, The Neville Brothers, Chaka Khan, Irma Thomas, Mavis Staples, Millie Jackson, The Bar Kays, Ann Peebles, Otis Clay, Isaac Hayes, Wilson Pickett, Lavern Baker, James Carr, Eddie Hinton,Les McCann, Dan Penn, Billy Preston: these are just a few of the names which have made Sweet Soul Music, Porretta Soul Festival an absolute reference point for lovers of the music throughout Europe.
Its organizers have had to consider the geography of black music in planning the festival, taking into consideration the calendar of other important musical events. Porretta is now part of the encyclopedias and official biographies of soul’s great protagonists. Don't foget the Rufus Thomas Park and the Otis Redding Street!