I never made it to Woodstock. Got sidetracked along the way but I haven't given up yet. I did have a friend that made it. He was one of the people who had to abandon their cars and walk in. He never even saw the main bandstand but he was still there. It was estimated that half a million people were there and a couple of hundred thousand, or so, never made it in. My friend said it really didn't matter if you didn't get to the main event because local bands had set up outside and were playing for free.
Financially Woodstock was a disaster and they had monumental problems getting the bands in, with food shortages and even way too few porta-johns but from Richie Havens opening to Jimi Hendrix's finish it didn't matter. Almost thirty years later the event is still legendary. I think it's because of that dream of the sixties. Peace, Love and Happiness. If ever it was accomplished it was at Woodstock. The war in Vietnam was growing. There were riots, demonstrations, natural disasters, political scandals, a moon landing and violent murders. Still in the middle of everything, for three days in August, 1969, the world took notice and those hippies that were going to be the ruination of the nation made history.
True there were drugs and there was sex but most of all there was Rock and Roll. Richie Havens, Country Joe McDonald and the Fish, John Sebastian, Melanie, Arlo Guthrie, Joan Baez, Santana, Canned Heat, Credence Clearwater Revival, Janis Joplin, Sly and the Family Stone, The Who, Jefferson Airplane, Joe Cocker, The Band, Johnny Winter, Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, The Butterfield Blues Band, Jimi Hendrix and even Sha Na Na. Some were already well known. Some were just beginning to be known and some were probably made by Woodstock Can you imagine gathering together artist of that stature today?
There were three deaths, One by being run over by a tractor, but there were two births. They shut down interstate highways. Bethel, were the concert was actually held temporarily became one of the largest cities in New York. Volunteers swept up in the spirit brought food. Police volunteered for security. Doctors and nurses gave their time to treat injuries and overdoses. It seems to me that Woodstock was the apex of the dreams we had for a better world. Early in the seventies the dream began to wane. Within the period of a year we lost Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix and Jim Morrison (The Doors). After Watergate who wouldn't lose faith.
I have an original album from Woodstock. Don't know if it's worth anything and I wouldn't part with it anyway. Sometimes I take it out just to look at it. I don't play it anymore, cds you know. I have been encouraged lately. It seems more and more young people are reviving the dream. Maybe there's hope for the world yet.
I'd love to hear memories from those of you who were there. High Times of those who can't remember is they were there or not. Fantasies of those who just think they were there and any other comments that might be relevant.
Bethel 1999 Plans for the reunion at the original site. Where I hope to go.
Woodstock69 Everything you ever wanted to know.
Woodstock 69 Lives Another page dedicated to Woodstock. Lots of good links.
Woodstock.com Official site for the 99 reunion.
Radio Woodstock Listen to Radio Woodstock online and check out the latest updates on Woodstock 1999.
ehippie's Woodstock Page Excellent page telling the story of Woodstock.
Yasgur Road Productions This is the site of the owners of the farm where the original Woodstock was held. Check out the plans for the newest reunion.
A Day in the Garden Check out Rob and Kathy's trip to the 1998 Woodstock Reunion.
Woodstock Nation Working to preserve the original site.
Ladybear She was there at Woodstock and she can take you there too. If you are an Old Hippie she'll probably move you like she did me.
Crosby, Stills and Nash Possibly the best band of the sixties.
Country Joe and The Fish The bands official site. After checking this one out be sure to go to the next two links.
Country Joe McDonald The real deal. Not a fan page. Listen to The Cheer.
Barry (The Fish) Melton Again this is the real Fish. Great page, good links and he's still carrying on the cause as a Public Defender. Guess who I got e-mail from?
ArloNet Arlo Guthrie's official site.
Richie Havens Fan page.
Janis Joplin Me and Bobby McGee.
Jimi Hendrix Source of Hendrix sites.
Sly and the Family Stone The energy of Sly's music made it impossible to stand still.
Santana Still have all their old albums. The music is still as great as ever.
The Who A legendary band.
Joe Cocker Saw Joe once in concert. Before it was over everyone was standing in their chairs dancing. You just couldn't help it.
The Band Started as Bob Dylan's back up band and ended up a legend. The Last Waltz is the best music documentary movie I've ever seen. It's something everyone should see.
Sweetwater Band The first band on stage. Find out what Nancy and band are up to now.
Melanie Safka Find out what's happening with Melanie.
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