Some people believe that Woodstock was a fitting end to the music of the sixties. That it was an event that has taken on a legendary stature that can never be repeated. What do you think?
That it was an epitome of what the Youngbloods sang about:
“Smile on your brother, everybody get together, try to love one another right now.” Or as we say, the Woodstock generation.
One of my students wrote a great e-book about Woodstock. Thank you Nadav!
What do you think?
I have several friends who were actually there.
So I interviewed them.
Here is Shay Cohen, talking about his experiences, and how Woodstock changed his entire life.
Shay Cohen talks about Woodstock
And here is Brian Gunshor, with a slightly different take.
Brian Gunshor talks about Woodstock
And finally, here is a complete stranger who claims that he was there as well.
He recently wrote “Even with all the rain and no food, no sleep, no toilet and those frickin swaying towers – it was still the greatest experience that I can ever imagine having…
…I’ve told people my Woodstock “story” over and over again for the past 45 years and I never get tired. I went there without a dime in my pocket and came home wealthy. Peace Brother!…
Looking back it seems like it was my fate to be there. It certainly changed my life. Yes, times have changed. It was an extremely creative time in history and there was a certain freedom that doesn’t seem to exist today.
We’re living in an exciting time now BUT we seem to be slaves to our technology and the media where back then, there were no cell phones, internet or twitter to remind us that the rest of the world and all its pain existed beyond that pasture of music. Make your life special !”
And Joni Mitchell was not there. But she did write this splendid song afterwards covered by Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young who were there. Lyrics here.
Ironically, Woodstock was not held at Woodstock, but rather at Bethel, at Max Yasgur’s dairy farm.
There are various legends as to how Max was approached and how he agreed. Who cares? He put it best in his own words.
Yasgur on Woodstock
Abigail Yasgur, is a cousin of the late Max Yasgur.
She and her husband, Joseph Lipner, wrote this book:
Lots of bands that I still love were there. What was the best music? Everyone has their own take. Here is one.
Credence Clearwater Revival were there. They were the first band to sign and ended up getting a lousy fee ($10,000) and a performance time around 2 a.m. Not very Woodstock-like of the organizers.
Fortunate son lyrics
Crosby, Stills, and Nash with Young, were there
Blood, Sweat and Tears were there
Tim Hardin was there
The Who Played Tommy
Shanana were there
Jimi Hendrix closed the show to a dwindling crowd with an eternal rendition of Star Spangled Banner).
Chicago had initially been signed to play at Woodstock, but they had a contract with concert promoter Bill Graham which allowed him to move their concerts at the Fillmore West. He rescheduled some of their dates to August 17, thus forcing them to back out of the concert. Graham did so to ensure that Santana would take their slot at the festival, as he managed them as well.
My favorite performances from Woodstock are Santana’s Soul Sacrifice.
and Joe Cocker’s immortal “With a little help from my friends”
And finally, in this link you can find
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