Eighty thousand people rest in Elmwood Cemetery. They created the world we inhabit. Gave us our culture.

And they made the music that the world knows us for.

2022 Soul of the City from Elmwood Cemetery on Vimeo.


This October, you can meet the songwriters, producers, composers, and singers of Elmwood Cemetery. They'll tell their stories from afternoon to evening from Thursday, October 6th to Saturday, October 8th.

Hear about Jimmie Lunceford's incredible accomplishments in teaching high schoolers Big Band music so well that they toured nationally, even performing in the Cotton Club. Listen to Sister Thea Bowman's glorious march towards Sainthood, and how she influenced Catholic church music. Walk through the sacred cemetery grounds, visiting our residents as their music floats by you. Grammy Award-winners, the legend of Stagger Lee, the beloved cook to a King, a sweet horn section, rock 'n roll, and the blues will be a part of the story we tell.

This incredible event happens only once a year. Begin your October festivities at Elmwood Cemetery.


The Soul of the City Tour is taking place over three nights this year: October 6th, 7th, and 8th! Tickets may be purchased here

New this year, join us for snacks or dinner after your tour ends.

Friday night: Pok Cha's Egg Rolls & More

Saturday night: 9DOUGH1



The Soul of the City Tour is being brought to you in part by the Crawford Howard Private Foundation.

Please help us thank and celebrate our generous sponsors. 

Presenting Sponsor


Granite Sponsor

Crone Monument Company 

Last Stop Sponsor

Carol & Will Leatherman 

Gant Systems

Memphis Zoo 

Undertaker Sponsor 

Ellen & Kevin Rardin

Eclectic Eye

HHM Certified Public Accountants 

LaUna Brubaker

Sowell Realtors

Pallbearer Sponsor


Michael & Carolyn Fisher 

Nino & Charles Shipp

Mr. and Mrs. Michael C. Williams 

Baltz & Sons Concrete

Boyle Insurance Agency 

Pugh's Earthworks

Kat & Dave Schwartz

Gina Pickens

Kelly Drake

Nora & Dan Conaway 

Gravedigger Sponsor 

Nancy Dowling 

Henry Turley 

Lincoln's Costume Shoppe 

Sponsorship of the Soul of the City is also provided by the following dedicated Cradle Gardeners:

Kim Lane, Vicki & Dan Murrell, Lyn & Ted Bailey, Linda Smothers, Elizabeth Mills, Judy Card, Erin Hillis, Teresa Ward


To become a sponsor, Click here and choose your sponsorship level

Elmwood Cemetery's Soul of the City event is a uniquely-Tennessee arts event. Become an Arts Advocate by purchasing a specialty license plate today, and support the future of Tennessee arts.