PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Craving southern style soul food with perhaps a side of performance art or live music to go with your collard greens and mac and cheese?  Elena’s Soul, at 49th and Baltimore offers two stories of wildly diverse live music, performance art and southern style soul food.

Owner Algernong Allen says Elena’s Soul is an eclectic spot where you can sit down and watch a performance on stage upstairs or if you into prefer audience participation head down a floor.

“When it is downstairs it is free form. You are right in the middle of the band playing and people are walking by. It’s really cool because it’s really organic. Everybody is part of the action.”

elenas souls crowd West Philly Offers A Spot For Music Lovers To Listen To Diverse Tunes And Eat Southern Style Food

Crowd at Elena's Soul (Credit: Stasia DeMarco, KYW Newsradio)

But for those that like to follow a calendar, some nights are a little more orchestrated.

“We have a jazz improve jam session that happens the first Tuesday of every month. Then we have a more hip-hop oriented jam session and that happens every other Thursday and we have DJ nights also,” says Allen.

He says his spot is really cool when there is a wide variety of art expression happening on both floors – simultaneously.

“There was this one time there was this kid downstairs he was a one man band. He played the keyboard and then he would do this visual computer stuff and then meanwhile upstairs there’s like a punk rock band going on. It’s like crazy but you get all types of energies here and it’s really cool.”

Listen to the extended interview…

If you just want to hang in a cool, local bar that has been around since before prohibition, Elena’s Soul offers that too along with a happy hour full of food and drink specials from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Reported by Stasia DeMarco, KYW Newsradio

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