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Peace, music and memories: As the 1960s fade, historians scramble to capture Woodstock's voices

44 Comments
By MICHAEL LIEDTKE

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Guess what that photo smells like...

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

Your fading childhood nostalgia is not history.

-13 ( +2 / -15 )

Guess what that photo smells like...

"Patchouli"

Woodstock was the most important cultural event of the 1960s and opposition to the Vietnam War.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

Woodstock was not as important as Monterey International Pop Festival. No Monterey, no Woodstock

https://res.cinemacity.co.jp/TicketReserver/studio/movie/3017

Guess what that photo smells like..

Smoky air-fried banana peel bacon.!.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

Nearly 500,000 attended Woodstock.

"Most notably, the latter half of the decade was characterized by a battle of values and a rise in anti-establishment feelings among the nation's younger citizens. The Woodstock Festival showed that the counterculture was alive and thriving and that its members were more aware than ever."

Remembering Woodstock

https://americanhistory.si.edu/explore/stories/remembering-woodstock

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Opposition to Vietnam yes, but Woodstock was not “the most important cultural event of the 1960s”.  From the beloved wiki:

"Monterey International Pop Festival was a three-day music festival held June 16 to 18, 1967 . The festival is remembered for the first major American appearances by the Jimi Hendrix Experience, the Who and Ravi Shankar, the first large-scale public performance of Janis Joplin and the introduction of Otis Redding to a mass American audience.

It became an inspiration and a template for future music festivals, including the Woodstock Festival two years later. **Rolling Stone publisher Jann Wenner said "Monterey was the nexus – it sprang from what the Beatles began, and from it sprang what followed."**

So to extrapolate, one might say “the most important cultural event of the 1960s” was Sgt Pepper’s… But of all festivals, give me Monty Pop Fes any day. Or Glastonbury 1997

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

This is one of the events I wish I had been around for..

Aside from the cultural impact, the line-up was superb. I watched the film as a kid and was blown away by Sly and the Family Stone - brilliant band.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

The 1960s and 1970s were the greatest era for rock music.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

The 1960s and 1970s were the greatest era for rock music.

I agree. From Elvis to Black Sabbath... and all the rest in between.

Santana were legendary at Woodstock.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nPauXWjY4T8

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

The early outdoor rock festivals were the best before they became commercial. Raw and basic.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

The 1960s and 1970s were the greatest era for rock music

Probably, and the 60s and 70s is not my era.

I don’t want to fall into the classic sign of aging where you say everything after a certain period is crap, but I think there are peaks and troughs.

The early outdoor rock festivals were the best before they became commercial. Raw and basic.

I saw the film of the Isle of Wight festival and the sound Free had was superb - raw and dirty.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

I saw the film of the Isle of Wight festival and the sound Free had was superb - raw and dirty.

I was there for those. The first Glastonbury Festival was in 1970. Only 1500 for that one.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Woodstock is mostly noted for the spirit it evoked rather than its music entertainment, hence the article. There were simply too many people there to hear and enjoy the music.

Raw and basic.

and

raw and dirty.

What ever floats your boat. But assuming you both are not playing 'devil's advocate' (for want of a better expression ; ^ ), I kind of know what direction you are coming from in your supposed opinion, but to be honest 'raw' and whatever is much better in small and personal indoor venues and clubs rather in the open air music festivals. Case in point;

Many of the performances at Woodstock that took place there are now considered legendary, thanks in part to an Oscar-winning documentary released the following year.

But many people who attended the festival didn’t get to hear the music that brought them there in the first place. while that technology was cutting-edge for the time, it was just not meant to carry music to such a large and dispersed crowd spread over 600 acres of open farmland.

The early outdoor rock festivals were the best before they became commercial. Raw and basic.

Such a comment certainly indicates you have never been to an outdoor rock festival but have instead watched and enjoyed the award winning documentaries that tell the story.

... the Isle of Wight festival and the sound Free had was superb - raw and dirty.

I was there for those. 

Indeed. If you insist.!.

Essential viewing if you want to know how rock festivals should sound:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VikyxJoBF2k

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R5dsh0DlJFw

Polished and slick; yes, Raw and basic, meh. Leave that for the pub on a Friday night.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

It is true, that Woodstock was as much about the gathering as the music which is why I said it was the greatest cultural event of the 1960s. I never said it was the greatest music event.

The early outdoor rock festivals were the best before they became commercial. Raw and basic.

Such a comment certainly indicates you have never been to an outdoor rock festival but have instead watched and enjoyed the award winning documentaries that tell the story.

I seriously doubt you have. I went to many including Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, Stones, and Dylan. You would have been too young to attend many of those. Shame you missed out on some great experiences.

I had the opportunity to listen to many bands in their early days before fame and money took over. Like the Beatles at the Cavern and Dire Straits in a church basement in Paddington with only 50 other people. Or the many bands who played the Roundhouse.

I can understand your envy and to some degree your jealousy.

The early rock festivals were raw and that was part of the fun. Brown rice and veg and muesli were the order of the day. No air fryers then.

What a pity you never made it to the Isle of Wight, in 1968, and 1969 with Bob Dylan. I doubt you were even born then.

Isle of Wight 1968. Jefferson Airplane, The Crazy World of Arthur Brown, The Move, Smile, Tyrannosaurus Rex, Plastic Penny, Fairport Convention, and The Pretty Things. 

1969 line-up included Bob Dylan, The Band, The Nice, The Pretty Things, Marsha Hunt, The Who, Third Ear Band, Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band, Fat Mattress, and Joe Cocker.

The first Glastonbury Fest was in 1970. How old were you then?

Sonny you missed so much but like you said you can watch the YouTubes and documentaries.

You can post your denials and accusations and insults but you'll never be able to rob me of my great music experiences.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

What ever floats your boat

Yes, it does.

I like raw and dirty sounds for some genres of music.

Clear?

1 ( +5 / -4 )

First-hand experience beats watching YouTube any day of the week.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Everyone in the photo is so slim. What has happened??

1 ( +4 / -3 )

The Bickershaw Festival was held in 1972 in Northern England near my hometown. A friend and I knew the organizer so we stayed in his house next to the festival with free backstage passes. First time I had slept in a real bed at a festival.

 The Grateful Dead, Captain Beefheart, Hawkwind, and The Kinks. I had worked for Hawkwind so it was good to see them again. Grateful Dead and Beefheat, are great.

It rained a lot if I remember. As it did at many other festivals like the early Glastonbury ones.

One afternoon in the organizer's house we had tea and cream cakes with Jerry Garcia. Later other things. Imagine that.

You can watch something online.

https://player.bfi.org.uk/free/film/watch-bickershaw-festival-1972-online#:~:text=Acts%20such%20as%20The%20Grateful,would%20be%20hard%20to%20forget.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

The Rolling Stones at the Knebworth Festival in 1976. The year before Pink Floyd had played. Went to both of those. Easy drive from London.

https://www.ukrockfestivals.com/76-Knebworth-festival.html

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Everyone in the photo is so slim. What has happened??

Your eyes got worse.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

tora

Everyone in the photo is so slim. What has happened??

After buying drugs there was little money left over for food. Brown rice, vegetables, whole wheat bread, muesli with water.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Remember what Charles Fleischer said "If you remember the '60s, you really weren't there" which has been widely mis-attributed to various other celebrities.

l I like raw and dirty sounds for some genres of music.

That's not music, its bad equipment. You need a new cassette player.

-8 ( +0 / -8 )

YouTube wasn't started until 2005, the internet 1980s. Infor was still being made on printed paper by offset printing.

There were also documentary video makers like Hoppy Hopkins and Sue Hall recording the culture of the time. Many were shown at the Film Co-op Camden London. Great guy, who passed away in 2015.

There were many others.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/JohnHopkins(political_activist)

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Elvis is here

Remember what Charles Fleischer said "If you remember the '60s, you really weren't there" which has been widely mis-attributed to various other celebrities.

Yes, you have posted that comment several times. If I can remember the 1960s and even the 1950s it just means I'm still lucky to have my memory.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

It is true, that Woodstock was as much about the gathering as the music

No, the music was not widely reported. It was the movie later that did it later on.

which is why I said it was the greatest cultural event of the 1960s.

Woodstock was marred by difficult environmental conditions, overpriced food and water, poor sanitation, sexual harassment and rapes, rioting, looting, vandalism, arson, violence, and several deaths, leading to media attention and controversy that vastly overshadowed coverage of the musical performances.

That's the raw, dirty and basic you love?

You can post your denials and accusations and insults but you'll never be able to rob me of my great music experiences.

Stop playing the "devil's advocate".!.

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

The article brings back many happy memories and thoughts of people I rarely think of any more, many already passed away.

We knew about Woodstock before it was happening. Everything was down the grapevine in those days.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

"We haven't had that spirit here since 1969."

55 squandered years?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Elvis is hereToday  02:51 pm JST

Woodstock was marred by difficult environmental conditions, overpriced food (no airfryers then) and water, poor sanitation, sexual harassment and rapes, rioting, looting, vandalism, arson, violence, and several deaths, leading to media attention and controversy that vastly overshadowed coverage of the musical performances.

That's the raw, dirty and basic you love?

You're referring to the 1999 festival which was a complete disaster with riots, fires, hundreds of sexual assaults, rampant commercialism (overpriced food, lack of water), filth and violence. Sewage infected drinking and shower water resulting in thousands of cases of trench mouth.

Both festivals suffered from poor sanitation and weather problems.

Anytime you have that many people gathered, you're bound to have problems. The difference between 1969 and 1999 was the magnitude of the problems which were much, much worse in 1999 than in 1969. Also 30yrs passed between the festivals, yet the conditions in 1999 were actually much worse.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

The rock music and festivals of the 1960s and 70s brought many young people together. People traveled more. American youth came to the UK and Europe, and then they went to America.

People would knock on the door of my house and ask if they could stay a night or two. Friendships grew and developed. It was easy to travel somewhere and stay with someone.

The alternative press was very active as was the environment movement. The CND movement.

It was all part of the same culture.

It was a good era.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Elvis is hereToday  02:51 pm JST

You're referring to the 1999 festival which was a complete disaster with riots, fires, hundreds of sexual assaults, rampant commercialism (overpriced food, lack of water), filth and violence. Sewage infected drinking and shower water resulting in thousands of cases of trench mouth.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

I can’t say anything about the era, I just only know that, a lot of the music was great, but the fashion….pass, same goes for the 70’s, I grew up the 80’s that was my decade, but it also seems people were more or less not as hygienically…self-conscious back in the 60’s, and I still ride my mom about how she dressed us in the 70’s.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

People would knock on the door of my house and ask if they could stay a night or two. Friendships grew and developed. It was easy to travel somewhere and stay with someone.

That sounds worse than the 1999 Woodstock festival.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

You're referring to the 1999 festival

Indeed. If someone was there they would have noticed that right away...

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

From the mid-1960s, thousands of communes were formed across Europe and America. Great places to live or visit and stay awhile. Alternative lifestyles based on a love of music and culture.

Sid Rawle was given an Island by John Lennon Dorinish an uninhabited island in Clew Bay in County Mayo. There was a commune for a while but the weather was just too harsh. King of the Hippies Sid Rawle ran a commune there from 1970 to 1972.

The Tipi Village in Wales is a place for diggers and dreamers. Sid Rawle was a digger.

https://diggersanddreamers.org.uk/community/tipi-valley

From the 1960s the youth saw an alternative lifestyle.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

wallaceToday  02:06 pm JST

One afternoon in the organizer's house we had tea and cream cakes with Jerry Garcia. Later other things. Imagine that.

LOL. Imagine that indeed. You must have had fun.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

How the hippie counterculture movement changed America

https://rooseveltislanddaily.news/2022/05/14/how-the-hippie-counterculture-movement-changed-america/

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Counterculture, or the hippie movement, promoted a message of peace and love that was generally coupled with a love for drugs and extreme hallucinogenics.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Counterculture, or the hippie movement, promoted a message of peace and love that was generally coupled with a love for drugs and extreme hallucinogenics.

Drugs were a major part of rock music and rock bands. Very few didn't use them. The music of Pink Floyd was composed from taking LSD.

Today, recreational drugs are allowed in many countries.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

The music of Pink Floyd was composed from taking LSD.

Very little of the music of Pink Floyd was composed from taking LSD. (Fixed that for you.) And after Syd Barrett left/was kicked out, I would say none at all was composed using LSD. We are talking about the first two albums only, after all.

As far as Woodstock goes, it was an important moment. But utterly overrated as a festival. Monterey, Wight, and even Bath festivals were far better. Besides,

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Besides, the two best groups at the time weren’t even there: the Stones and Zeppelin.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Elvis is hereToday  04:07 pm JST

You're referring to the 1999 festival

Indeed. If someone was there they would have noticed that right away...

Indeed, if you knew what you were talking about, you'd have realized that you're referring to the wrong Woodstock.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Besides, the two best groups at the time weren’t even there: the Stones and Zeppelin.

Not forgetting the Beatles who started the whole movement

Indeed, if you knew what you were talking about, you'd have realized that you're referring to the wrong Woodstock.

Indeed. Who says?

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

The music of Pink Floyd was composed from taking LSD.

Lol. aaronagstring 7:37pm says it well

Sgt peppers lonely hearts club band started the flying teacup psychedelic movement and put into motion the road to Woodstock.

Everyone knows that.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

“He was one of the most crucial figures of the ’60s. Much of the underground was his invention”: the forgotten story John ‘Hoppy’ Hopkins, the man who invented psychedelic London

Hopkins, who died in 2015, was nicknamed the ‘King Of The Underground’ but never became a household name like Barrett or Pink Floyd. “Hoppy was one of the most crucial figures of the 60s,” explains Malcolm Boyle, one of the directors of a long-gestating documentary, Hoppy – Underground Head. “Much of underground, alternative London was his invention.”

https://www.loudersound.com/features/john-hoppy-hopkins-pink-floyd-psychedelia-uk?utm_source=flipboard&utm_content=topic%2Flondon

1 ( +3 / -2 )

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