Music Festivals are constantly curated and in recent times, unfold in abundance as live music lovers today are spoiled to have their preferred picks of summertime get downs. However, there’s only one original festival that can be credited with truly sparking an endless movement–Woodstock. We’re lucky enough to see footage, listen to wild tales of the 1969 live music renaissance and visit the stomping grounds where the magic of Jimi Hendrix, The Who, Jefferson Airplane, Janis Joplin and so many more were unleashed. Now, New York state has big plans to step in with financial funding to commemorate the fest with a 2019 50th anniversary event.
After rumors have circulated among fake bills, rock music fans can rest knowing that a dream will soon be reality. According to LocalSyr, “The Regional Economic Development Council announced earlier this week includes nearly $690,000 for the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts — that’s located on the site of the original Woodstock Music Festival.”
Promoter Michael Lang put together two previous anniversary versions of the iconic festival; the first in nearby Saugerties at Winston Farm in 1994. The event featured a raucous mud-throwing performance from Green Day, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Primus and Bob Dylan. The 1999 edition, held on a deactivated air force base in Rome, is most remembered for its tumultuous ending. Attendees rioted, starting fires and looting vendors as the final bands performed. Allegations of rape throughout the weekend also tainted the festival, putting any further incarnations of it in doubt.
Having showcased three days of peace, music and love to over 400,000 attendees, the 2019 event will offer the same three-day setup at the 11-year old venue. Bethel Woods oozes history from its amphitheater to its Woodstock Museum that often showcases clothing and special effects from its generation’s biggest stars, offering you a way to get lost in time and get on the bus for a bit.
We won’t get to see Hendrix shred the “Star-Spangled Banner,” hear Jerry Garcia sing songs to fill the air or listen in awe as Joplin unleashes her raspy vocals to an endless crowd but we can only expect the biggest names to make their way out to the late 1960s and 1970s resurgence. No one who was there will ever be the same, and we’re hoping this statement at least holds up half way for its 50th anniversary bash.