Woodstock 50 is Canceled: Michael Lang

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Woodstock 50 organizer Michael Lang confirmed today (July 31) that the event has been canceled.

In a statement published on the official Woodstock website that evening, Lang said: “We are saddened that a series of unforeseen setbacks has made it impossible to put on the festival we imagined with the great line-up we had booked and the social engagement we were anticipating.

“When we lost [Watkins Glen] and then Vernon Downs we looked for a way to do some good rather than just cancel. We formed a collaboration with HeadCount to do a smaller event at the Merriweather Pavilion to raise funds for them to get out the vote and for certain NGOs involved in fighting climate change. We released all the talent so any involvement on their part would be voluntary.

“Due to conflicting radius issues in the DC area many acts were unable to participate and others passed for their own reasons.

“I would like to encourage artists and agents, who all have been fully paid, to donate 10% of their fees to HeadCount or causes of their choice in the spirit of peace.”

In recent days many alums of the original Woodstock festival who were booked last March to play Woodstock 50, had decided to pull out, including John Fogerty.

On Monday, July 29, Carlos Santana, one of the breakout acts of the ’69 event, announced that he was out. “Santana will not be performing at the 50th Anniversary event at Merriweather Post,” Santana publicist Michael Jensen told the Poughkeepsie Journal. “The band will have just performed in that marketplace at Jiffy Lube Live a couple of nights before on their Supernatural Tour with The Doobie Brothers…”

On Tuesday, July 30, two of the scheduled headliners for the original planned opening night (Aug. 16), Miley Cyrus and the Raconteurs, pulled out. (Another of that evening’s headliners, the Lumineers, no longer show the date on their tour schedule.)

Also on Monday (July 29), came news that John Sebastian and Country Joe McDonald, both of whom also played the original 1969 festival, had decided to bow out of the 50th anniversary event. “I’m not interested in getting on a ship that’s sinking,” McDonald told the Baltimore Sun.

The pair’s withdrawal followed an earlier announcement from Fogerty, who stated that he would no longer be performing at the commemorative concerts.

On July 31, Lang also said, “My thoughts turn to Bethel and its celebration of our 50th Anniversary to reinforce the values of compassion, human dignity, and the beauty of our differences embraced by Woodstock.”

For a while, it appeared that an anniversary event, would take place 256 miles from Max Yasgur’s Farm in White Lake, N.Y., with a free – though ticketed – event at Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, MD.

As of 12:30 p.m. ET on August 1, the official Woodstock social media accounts had not been updated to reflect the cancellation. Pinned to the top of their Facebook page was the March 19 announcement of the original Woodstock 50 lineup.

[The Director’s Cut of the 1970 Woodstock film will be presented in theaters for one showing on August 15. Tickets are available here.]

On Thursday (July 25), sources were quoted indicating that the 3-day concert to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the legendary 1969 Woodstock festival will be held August 16-18 at the Merriweather Post Pavilion, an outdoor amphitheater in Columbia, Md. By July 30, reports had the anniversary event being scaled down to a single day.

Bloomberg was the first to report the news about the new location. Though the concerts were scheduled to begin in three weeks, no acts had been announced, for what would have most certainly been a scaled down event from what was originally anticipated.

Reports began circulating on Saturday (July 27) that the concerts would be free, with TMZ writing that “instructions on how to get tickets will likely be posted by the end of the week.” To help defray costs of the performers and event staffing, TMZ notes: “VIP tickets will still be sold at a cost in an effort to bridge the gap between expenses and profit.”

The more things change, the more they stay the same: When the original 1969 festival became overrun with attendees, its organizers famously announced that it would be a free concert.

On July 26, Billboard reported that the Woodstock 50 organizers were formally releasing all of the artists who had been booked from their contracts (though moving the venue so far away from the intended location in Watkins Glen N.Y., had already violated the agreements).

Fogerty, who was among the Woodstock ’69 alums scheduled to perform at Woodstock 50, was the first artist to announce that he would not participate in the Maryland event. A statement to Variety read: “50 years later, John is going back to the original site where his name appears on a plaque commemorating that weekend. John will celebrate his own 50th Anniversary as well as Woodstock’s, together at Bethel on August 18. Back at the original site that he stepped foot on 50 years ago, nearly to the day!”

On Friday (July 26), the Associated Press wrote that Jay-Z, originally scheduled to headline the final night on August 18, was also pulling out. Dead and Company followed suit later that day.

The Poughkeepsie Journal reported on July 27 that The Zombies and Hollis Brown – both of whom were scheduled for the 50th anniversary event’s original intended site of Watkins Glen, N.Y. – will perform. The paper quoted their manager, Cindy da Silva, as saying: “As long as they have an event, we’re going to be there.”

Promoter Seth Hurwitz, who oversees operations for many Washington, D.C.-based venues including Merriweather told Billboard the venue “has a similar historic legacy [as Woodstock]. We made a deal quickly contingent on him putting a show together and dealing with the fact that we have a show [already] booked on one of those dates. So now I’m just a venue waiting to see if the promoter with the hold is going to confirm.”

Dozens of acts were revealed with great fanfare on March 19. Among those in the original announcement were several that had performed at the 1969 festival including, prominently, Fogerty who had performed with Creedence Clearwater Revival, and Santana. Others on the original Woodstock 50 bill include such contemporary acts as The Killers, Miley Cyrus, Chance the Rapper, and Imagine Dragons.)

The Merriweather Post Pavilion had previously booked the Smashing Pumpkins and Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds for Saturday, August 17.

On July 22, the town of Vernon, N.Y. denied the promoters of the Woodstock 50 festival a fourth time, citing safety concerns. On July 17, the would-be festival’s organizers had appealed the town officials’ decision made last Tuesday (July 16), which marked the third time they had been denied to hold the event at the town’s Vernon Downs race track.

In a rebuke of the organizers, the town’s official response noted: “the promoters of this concert, although they claim it will be conducted safely, avoid undertaking direct responsibility for that safety.”

The news of the fourth denial was first reported on July 22 by John Barry in his continued fine reporting for the Poughkeepsie Journal.

The July 22 letter signed by Reay Walker, Vernon’s Code Enforcement Officer, denied the Woodstock 50 organizers for numerous reasons, citing safety and health concerns, often noting that the application was riddled with inaccuracies and omissions. Walker also indicated that the appeal “was not accompanied by a [signed] application.”

Walker writes that “the plan relies on the involvement of the Oneida County Sheriff’s Department for explosive detections teams and vehicle search guards, despite the fact that the County Sheriff himself has declared his refusal to commit to the safety of this activity, given the lack of time to prepare.”

With regard to “65,000 concertgoers entering and leaving this venue… for three successive days, there is no mention whatever as to where those persons will stay the night. Implicit in this application is that those forced to leave Vernon Down at 11:00 at night will sleep in their cars or any lawn or sidewalk that seems unguarded.”

After the third denial, Michael Lang, who famously produced the original festival and is the principal organizer of the 50th anniversary event, told the music website, Pitchfork, he is “considering all options.”

The Poughkeepsie Journal‘s Barry had quoted Vernon town attorney Vincent Rossi as saying: “We’re certainly going to do everything we can to have [a decision] no later than Monday. There are a lot of pieces to this.”

”I’m not surprised that Woodstock 50 has re-applied for a third time in yet another attempt to hold this event in Vernon,” Oneida County Sheriff Robert Maciol said in a statement quoted in the newspaper’s coverage. “The very serious public safety concerns I had (Wednesday) are still the same ones I have today, nothing has changed that would make me feel otherwise. With only 29 days until the event, there is no practical or logistical possibility that this event could occur without significant risk to public safety.”

On July 16, the town’s planning committee unanimously denied the necessary permit to the festival’s organizers.

Later that same night, the Woodstock 50 side issued an announcement:

“Woodstock 50 is disappointed that the Town of Vernon has passed up the opportunity to hold the historic 50th Anniversary Festival by denying our robust and thoughtful proposal. We regret that those in Vernon who supported Woodstock have been deprived of the once-in-a-lifetime chance to be part of the rebirth of a cultural peace movement that changed the world in 1969 and is what the world needs now. We want to thank the artists who stood by us. We are grateful for the support of Vernon Downs and its generous owner Jeffrey Gural.”

The venue where the promoters hoped to hold the celebration, Vernon Downs, holds 35,000 people, a far cry from the fabled half-million that attended the original Woodstock. The planned new festival has been hampered by legal and financial problems since its inception, and while the promoters were optimistic up until tonight, the town’s latest decision to deny the permit would seem to be the end of the road for Woodstock 50.

According to an article published July 16 in Variety, Woodstock founder Michael Lang, when asked prior to the town’s decision what would happen if the festival’s appeal is rejected, told the Poughkeepsie Journal: “If we don’t get the decision we want, it’s [cancellation] something that we will then have to consider. If it doesn’t work this year, it doesn’t work this year. We’ve tried everything we can. We’ve done our best. We’ll continue to do our best until we find out one way or the other whether it’s going to happen.”

The entertainment newspaper also reported: “As for what happens next? Organizers could refile, but that looks to be a fruitless attempt at this point. Certainly, litigation is forthcoming, but until the festival is officially canceled, the millions of dollars sitting in escrow and committed to performing acts will remain untouched.”

You can read all of our previous coverage about the Woodstock 50 saga below…

The organizers of the Woodstock 50 festival will appeal numerous decisions by town officials in Vernon, N.Y., who have denied a permit – multiple times – to hold the 50th anniversary festival there.

On July 16, the organizers will plead their case to Vernon’s planning board and ask them to overrule the recent decisions to deny a permit that were made by town officials.

On July 15 and again on the morning of July 16, the proposed venue, Vernon Downs Casino and Hotel, held an open house for residents and officials “to embrace the Festival’s spirit of peace, love and music by stopping by… to meet the team and preview a proposal for a 50th Anniversary celebration.”

The open house announcement, released on July 15, called the opportunity “the beginning of a tremendous legacy that would help secure jobs today and for future generations.” Near term, said the release, “Woodstock 50 could foresee hiring local residents to help with ticketing, security, logistical support, transportation, set up, break down and clean up.”

On July 11, the Town of Vernon’s Code Enforcement Office again denied the organizers a permit, after already doing so on July 9. The Town of Vernon’s Reay W. Walker cited numerous “deficiencies” in the organizers’ permit application in the July 11 decision.

The town requires a minimum of 120 days’ notice to apply for a permit for the size and scale of such an event. “Since this application is filed only 35 days before the event, it is untimely and rejected for that reason,” wrote Walker.

Acknowledging the 11th-hour nature of the request, Walker wrote: “This office has done its best to review the 139-page submission filed a few hours ago to provide a substantive response.” Elsewhere in the response letter, Walker criticized the organizers’ vagueness and legibility.

“All of the pages of the Public Safety Plan are marked ‘draft’,” Walker wrote. “‘Woodstock 50 Evacuation Routes and Fire Lanes’ are described as ‘tentative, still in development.’

“Time does not permit me to recite all of the deficiencies.”

The July 11 letter from the Town of Vernon to the Woodstock 50 organizers comes via Syracuse (N.Y.) TV station WSYR. The station reports that the organizers plan to appeal the decision to the town planning board “on Tuesday,” presumably meaning July 16, which is exactly one month prior to the would-be event’s August 16 start.

In a note posted on their various social media platforms earlier today (July 11), the organizers wrote an open letter to the upstate New York town.

“Dear Town of Vernon,” it read. “Woodstock is committed to bringing peace, love and music to The Downs,” referring to the Vernon Downs race track. “Will you all let peace, love and music prevail August 16th-18th?”

It was signed: “With love, Woodstock 50.”

That news follows the town’s decision on Tuesday, July 9, to deny a permit, barely five weeks before what is supposed to be opening day of the hoped-for event. The organizers are hoping to use the race track as a substitute site for the event. Utica, N.Y., television station WKTV reported that Vernon town attorney Vincent Rossi made the earlier decision to deny the permit.

The TV station reports that the permit application was “bare bones, as in one page… and not a spec of detail.” The organizers would have five days to appeal the decision.

Rossi’s call followed a town meeting held on Monday, July 8, where residents voiced their concern. At that time, Oneida County Sheriff Robert Maciol was quoted by the Spectrum News as saying, “I will never endorse any plan, whether it’s this event, or any event, if I feel the public safety is at risk. And as of today, I am not comfortable endorsing this proposal.”

The July 11 announcement was the first in a while from the organizers who have been mum on a potential new location and whether it can be still be held on August 16-18. As of July 11, the official site still lists those dates and finally removed the long-since squashed location of Watkins Glen.

Woodstock 50 organizer Michael Lang, long considered the major behind-the-scenes face of the original festival, faced similar challenges in 1969 when he famously secured Max Yasgur’s farm in White Lake, N.Y., roughly 30 days before the event was scheduled to begin.

Once Watkins Glen had turned down the event, a mass gathering permit was filed to hold the festival at Vernon Downs, a harness track not far from Utica, N.Y. The site owners are reported to have claimed that their facility could accommodate up to 65,000 attendees.

Problems, though, continued to abound. An Oneida County executive issued a statement on July 2 that described the “significant challenge” that remains.

“With the event just a little over a month away, we have been asked to prepare in just days what has failed to get done in over a year of negotiations and preparations at the previous location,” said Oneida County executive Anthony Picente.

“Our first and foremost concern is for the safety and welfare of Oneida County residents. With such a short timeframe the logistical hurdles to ensure the public health and safety of the concert goers and the surrounding community could pose a significant challenge,” he said.

And Utica, NY television station WKTV reported that there are only 3100 hotel rooms in the county. The station quoted County Sheriff Maciol as saying: “There’s no overnight accommodations at this event. There’s no camping. So at 11:00, these people have to leave. Where are they going to go?”

The festival organizers were rebuffed in a New York State court on June 20 for roughly $18 million they were trying to reclaim from their one-time financial partner.

John Barry of the Poughkeepsie Journal continued his thorough reporting on the topic in a June 21 story for the paper.

A panel of Appellate Court judges ruled in favor of the original financial backers, Dentsu Aegis, who had pulled the money from a festival account, that it had originally deposited for future expenses related to the festival.

The Woodstock 50 organizers had sought to keep the $18 million, arguing that it was “illegally swept,” but the judges ruled in favor of Dentsu.

The original lineup for Woodstock 50, announced on March 19

The social media platforms for the event still list August 16-18 for the festival dates. The Watkins Glen site owners announced on June 10 they had terminated the site license. Reports began to emerge on June 14 that a missed payment for $150,000 by the organizers led the venue to invoke a breach-of-contract decision.

Promoter Michael Lang faced a nearly identical obstacle 50 years ago, ultimately getting permission from Max Yasgur to hold the 1969 festival on his farm.

Reports in mid-June speculated on various locations in Central New York where Lang might be able to hold a scaled-down version. One location was Vernon Downs racetrack in Vernon, N.Y., not far from Syracuse. The facility has been able to accommodate up to 30,000 for a concert, a far cry from the 75,000 to 100,000 originally anticipated for Woodstock 50. Lang is said to be aiming for a target crowd of up to 50,000.

If that wasn’t enough, the festival’s producer has also pulled out. CID Entertainment told Billboard–also on June 10–it “is no longer involved… in any capacity.”

A June 10 statement from the Watkins Glen site owners said, “Watkins Glen International terminated the site license for Woodstock pursuant to provisions of the contract. As such, WGI will not be hosting the Woodstock 50 Festival.”

Furthermore, the fight for the financing of Woodstock 50 continues. The two sides in the ongoing legal proceeding–the organizers and its one-time financial partner–are apparently headed for arbitration. The two sides appeared in New York State Supreme Court on Wednesday, May 29, to argue which side is entitled to $18 million that was in a festival account.

The Poughkeepsie (N.Y.) Journal reported that the judge declined to order the original financial backers, Dentsu Aegis, to return the funds to the Woodstock 50 organizers.

On May 15, Judge Barry Ostrager of the Supreme Court of New York ruled that Dentsu Aegis had no right to cancel the festival, as it attempted to do on April 29. Woodstock 50 LLC had filed a request with the court on May 9 for a temporary restraining order to stop Dentsu from what the organizers describe as “sabotaging the festival.”

But it wasn’t a complete victory for promoter Michael Lang’s team. Judge Ostrager ruled Woodstock 50 “has not met the high burden entitling it to a mandatory injunction” for $17.8 million it had asked be returned by Dentsu Aegis to the festival’s funds.

However, the Woodstock 50 team appealed that decision and the sides argued their case in court on May 29. Judge Andrew Borrok signed a stipulation on May 23 forbidding Dentsu or its Amplifi Live division from contacting any vendors connected to the festival.

The organizers of Woodstock 50 announced on May 17 an agreement with Oppenheimer & Co. as a financial advisor to complete the financing for the festival, following a legal victory earlier that week.

The May 17 announcement noted, “Event preparations will continue as planned as Oppenheimer joins the list of strong institutions producing the festival.”

At that time, the organizers announced the ticket on-sale date would be announced “shortly.” The festival remains scheduled for August 16-18.

John Tonelli, head of Debt Capital Markets & Syndication at Oppenheimer & Co. Inc., said, “We believe in Woodstock as an important American cultural icon and look forward to its regeneration in the green fields of Watkins Glen this August with all of the artists on the remarkable lineup.”

“We’ve lined up artists who won’t just entertain, but will remind the world that music has the power to bring people together, to heal, to move us to action and to tell the stories of a generation,” said Lang, co-founder and producer of the 1969 and 2019 Woodstock festivals. “We look forward to putting on an incredible festival. Words cannot express how appreciative Woodstock 50, the artists, the fans and the community are to Oppenheimer for joining with us to make W50 a reality.”

Lang said, “We have always relied on the truth and have never lost faith that the Festival would take place. I would like to thank all of the talent and their representatives for their patience and support. Woodstock 50 will be an amazing and inspiring festival experience.”

Gregory Pack, identified as the principal of Woodstock 50, said, “Woodstock 50 is on! Now that the court has confirmed that the Festival was never validly cancelled and is going forward, Woodstock 50 can focus on finalizing the necessary funding arrangements. We can’t wait to bring this important event to the public this summer. We have one of the greatest lineups of talent of any music festival, and we are grateful to all of the talent for their loyalty and support.”

Would-be attendees are still waiting for ticket information.

In a day that rock and rolled back and forth, the Woodstock 50 festival, anticipated for years (decades?), was said to be formally cancelled on April 29. The financial backers called the decision “difficult… but the most prudent decision for all parties involved.”

However, the organizers said the festival was still on. That same night, they issued a statement that adamantly insisted “we will of course be continuing.

“We are committed to ensuring that the 50th Anniversary of Woodstock is marked with a festival deserving of its iconic name and place in American history and culture,” read the statement. “Although our financial partner is withdrawing, we will of course be continuing with the planning of the festival and intend to bring on new partners. We would like to acknowledge the State of New York and Schuyler County for all of their hard work and support. The bottom line is, there is going to be a Woodstock 50th Anniversary Festival, as there must be, and it’s going to be a blast.”

If one were to do an Internet search on the key words “Woodstock 50,” one would find lots of conflicting info.

Related: Lang issued another statement on April 30 to would-be ticket buyers

Earlier on April 29, the Poughkeepsie Journal quoted a statement from the organizers in response to its now-former financial backers, “Woodstock 50 vehemently denies the festival’s cancellation and legal remedy will (be) sought.”

The festival, formally announced months ago, and scheduled to take place on August 16-17-18 in Watkins Glen, N.Y., had been beset with several logistical problems.

On April 29, Dentsu Aegis Network, the Japanese advertising giant which was heavily involved in presenting the festival, told Billboard in a statement: “It’s a dream for agencies to work with iconic brands and to be associated with meaningful movements. We have a strong history of producing experiences that bring people together around common interests and causes which is why we chose to be a part of the Woodstock 50th Anniversary Festival. But despite our tremendous investment of time, effort and commitment, we don’t believe the production of the festival can be executed as an event worthy of the Woodstock Brand name while also ensuring the health and safety of the artists, partners and attendees.

“As a result and after careful consideration, Dentsu Aegis Network’s Amplifi Live, a partner of Woodstock 50, has decided to cancel the festival. As difficult as it is, we believe this is the most prudent decision for all parties involved.”

The Poughkeepsie Journal‘s April 29 story also quoted a statement from the New York State Dept. of Health. “From the beginning planning stages, the New York State Department of Health has worked closely and collaboratively with all parties involved in Woodstock 50 to assure a safe and successful event. Today’s cancellation announcement is not a result of the permit application pending with the department. The department was surprised to learn of today’s decision to cancel the event.”

On April 30, Lang sent an email to would-be ticket buyers that read, in part, “Woodstock never belonged to Dentsu, so they don’t have a right to cancel it.

“Woodstock belongs to the people and it always will.

“We don’t give up and Woodstock 50 will take place and will be a blast!”

The ticket on-sale date had been quietly delayed on April 19. The explanation was the lack of a permit from Schuyler County’s Dept. of Health.

When the planned ticket on-sale date of April 22 (Earth Day) was delayed, the festival’s official website didn’t explain why.

The Poughkeepsie Journal quoted local officials in a April 22 story that the number of attendees for the three-day fest would likely be set at 75,000. Organizers have been said to be hoping for 100,000.

Related: Woodstock organizers plan annual festival

The newspaper quoted an email reply from county administrator Tim O’Hearn: “We have maintained the position that the attendance number would be set at whatever number the production team and promoter could demonstrate they could support with adequate infrastructure and security. That number has been determined to be 75,000…”

Prices were never formally revealed. Festival organizer Michael Lang previously said that single-day tickets would not be sold, only packages covering the entire three-day event. Lang himself had told Bloomberg News in late April that he expected them to cost festivalgoers $450.

Music industry trade publication Hits reported on April 19 that Danny Wimmer Presents, a music festival production and promotion company, had told talent agents for the festival, “There is currently a hold on the Woodstock 50 on-sale date. We are waiting on an official press statement from Woodstock 50 regarding updated announce, ticket pricing, and overall festival information. We will get this information to you as soon as we receive it.”

Rumors of the festival’s demise were so rampant that its organizer, Michael Lang, told Billboard, also on April 19, “Woodstock is a phenomenon that for fifty years has drawn attention to its principles and also the rumors that can be attached to that attention.” As for its being cancelled, Lang called them “just more rumors.”

Earlier, hoping to quell the fears of nervous local residents, the organizers of the upcoming festival held what was described as a public information session in Watkins Glen on March 27.

Although the racetrack site has been home to many large-scale events, including a 1973 festival that featured the Grateful Dead, the Allman Brothers Band and The Band, which drew an estimated 600,000 attendees, locals have expressed fears that the crowd for the planned August event could cause havoc. They cited reports from a 1999 Woodstock anniversary event, where violent acts occurred and fires were set on the grounds. Residents were also apprehensive about  the possibility of large numbers of unticketed fans showing up hoping to gain entry, which also happened at previous Woodstock concerts.

Lang, one of the promoters of the original 1969 Woodstock, assured residents that his team is better equipped to handle any problems than they were 20 years ago. He said that he had spoken with presenters of other large festivals, who gave him tips on how to control crowds and avoid potentially negative issues.

“We were the only show in town, people came from all over the world. It’s a very different world now, there are festivals in every city in America,” Lang told the assembled residents at the March 27 meeting.

Lang pointed out that he was careful to book artists who are unlikely to incite fans to riot. He said that 80 acts in all have been booked for Woodstock 50, that the crowd size will be limited to 100,000 people and that campsite sales will be capped at 27,000, with a limit of four people per campsite. Lang added that campers’ vehicles will be searched for prohibited materials, and that security personnel will have a strong presence at the event. He said that some 1,100 security personnel have been hired, and that local law enforcement officers will also be on-site to keep things under control. Healthcare personnel will also be available on-site.

The organizers of the Woodstock Music & Art Fair revealed on March 19 the lineup of the official 50th anniversary festival, including several performers – John Fogerty and Santana, among them – who appeared at the original 1969 festival. Woodstock 50 was originally to be held August 16, 17 and 18, 2019, in Watkins Glen, N.Y.

Headlining the event were The Killers, Miley Cyrus, Robert Plant & the Sensational Space Shifters and Santana on Aug. 16, Dead and Company and Chance the Rapper on Aug. 17, and Jay-Z and Imagine Dragons on Aug, 18.

Many of the names, Dead and Company, Santana and Cyrus, among them, had been leaked in early March.

Just prior to the March 19 announcement, Cyrus tweeted, “Woodstock here I come!”

Among the other Woodstock 50 performers who famously played the ’69 festival are David Crosby, Melanie, Country Joe McDonald, John Sebastian and Canned Heat. Hot Tuna’s Jorma Kaukonen and Jack Casady played in ’69 as part of Jefferson Airplane. Amy Helm’s father, Levon Helm, performed at the original with The Band.

Other acts booked to perform at the 50th anniversary concert include The Lumineers, Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats, Courtney Barnett, Sturgill Simpson, Brandi Carlie, Greta Van Fleet, the Zombies and Gary Clark Jr.

Watch Santana perform at the 1969 festival

The Black Keys announced in April that they had bowed out of the festival due to “a scheduling conflict.”

Classic rock fans may recall that the location in upstate New York is famous for previous rock festivals including a 1973 event that featured the Grateful Dead, the Allman Brothers Band and The Band.

In an interview with The New York Times, published Jan. 9, Michael Lang, who co-created Woodstock along with Artie Kornfeld, said, “Coachella’s got its thing, as does Bonnaroo and Lollapalooza. But I think they’re all missing an opportunity to make a difference in the world. They’re all perfect places for social engagement and for fostering ideas, and I think that’s lost.”

On Dec. 27, Bethel Woods Center for the Arts, site of Woodstock ’69 in Bethel, N.Y., announced plans to produce a “three-day festival” on the identical weekend. It’s since been scaled down significantly, with separate concerts on each day.

“While the original site in Bethel remains close to our hearts,” Lang said in a prepared statement in late December, “it no longer has the capacity to hold a real Woodstock festival.

“I’m delighted that Bethel Woods is doing events in the coming year to celebrate what we brought to life in 1969 and I encourage people to visit the museum and concert venue.”

Related: John Fogerty, Santana, Arlo Guthrie and others will perform at the Bethel Woods event

As Best Classic Bands announced in July 2018, PBS and American Experience will air a new two-hour documentary, Woodstock, which bowed at the Tribeca Film Festival earlier this year. It’ll have its TV premiere on PBS in conjunction with the 50th anniversary. The film is directed by Barak Goodman, and written by Goodman and Don Kleszy.

Related: Woodstock ’69 performers – Where are they now?

Best Classic Bands has been celebrating the greatest rock festival of all-time with a series of feature articles including Joni Mitchell’s “Woodstock” – Behind the Song, interviews with all members of Jefferson Airplane, and Melanie’s recollections, among them.

Best Classic Bands will continue to update this story.

Related: Listings for 100s of classic rock tours

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  1. Woodstock
    #1 Woodstock "69" Rocks On 20 March, 2019, 01:13

    Woodcrock 2019.
    OMG, if Lang & Partners pull this off it will be the biggest scam of the 21st century. So let’s recap, about 5% of the original musicians will be there, another 10% are musicians we’ve heard of but weren’t even born in 1969 & the other 85% are bands/musicians we’ve never heard of. Wow, Bill Graham just screamed yelled loud as hell from his grave like he used to. The best part is yet to come…..Yes, the price? I figure about a “C” note ($100) for the 3 days of unheard of music. After spending 70 years on this planet I will share some good old wisdom. STAY HOME!
    It’s going to be a mess, folks & for what? Miley Cyrus & Chance the Rapper? Nope, not me.

    Reply this comment
    • Cosmo
      Cosmo 24 March, 2019, 00:52

      The worst lineup ever! You’re right….who are these groups? Never heard of most of them. Earl Sweatshirt & Boygenius…..WTF.
      Lang & Partners are ripoff artists & they should cancel this bullsheet show.. WTF LANG?

      Reply this comment
    • Sandy
      Sandy 29 March, 2019, 00:38

      I was there in 1969 & I agree with the above comment. Stay home coz it’s gonna suck in every way.

      Reply this comment
    • Bill Z
      Bill Z 30 March, 2019, 01:26

      In reply to the geezers who hate the line-up (I’m 63, by the way): the original Woodstock was aimed toward young people. It featured bands that were familiar to people in their twenties and unfamiliar to people in their sixties and seventies. Older people had no idea who Country Joe was, and the great majority of the people at the festival had no idea who Santana was. They hadn’t released their first LP yet. You all make yourselves look so foolish and irrelevant when you shake your wrinkled fists and moan about how you don’t recognize the artists. You’ve become your parents and grandparents. “Jefferson Airplane?? Who are they?? Now Frank Sinatra, there’s a true musician!!”

      Hey, I mostly prefer older music too, but I have enough perspective to realize that you’re all coming off like Granny Clampett.

      Reply this comment
      • Mare
        Mare 20 April, 2019, 16:10

        Then call it Coachella East and not Woodstock.

        Reply this comment
        • RknBkr12
          RknBkr12 28 April, 2019, 01:02

          AMEN! Woodstock wasn’t merely a concert [with real musicians] – it was a spirit and a major statement for the times. Please give me the benefit of Miley Cyrus’ message…

          Reply this comment
      • EZYRIDER
        EZYRIDER 21 April, 2019, 00:27

        Bill Z,
        In reply to your reply, yes, we knew all the bands that were at WS 69 but my parents who were in their 60 at the time, knew Joe Cocker, Santana, Melanie, Canned Heat, Hendrix, Johnny Winter, etc, etc, etc. You know why? Coz I blasted that music from my room and they heard it. My kids are both talented musicians & one played on one track of a Van Halen album & they have no idea who half these musicians are. Your statement is about 20% valid. The truth is, 75% of the bands playing WS2019 are nobodies. There’s not even any bands from WS90’s like NIN, AIC, Living Colour, etc. This is a case of Michael Lang trying to catch.ightening in a bottle which will never happen again. He’s doing it for $$$$ with the aid of Corporate America. It’s gonna suck just like all the others except the original…..

        Reply this comment
    • Buffaloodle
      Buffaloodle 22 April, 2019, 14:46

      Hey “69”, I doubt a C note will get you within smelling distance of this festival. Probably closer to $500 than $100 per ticket. Yes overpriced like almost all live events these days but this is also how artists make money now. No more album sales and only the very top artists have good enough streaming deals to make money off it. I read through the artist list and I know 90% of the first ten bands/artists listed for each day (just skip Sunday and leave early to beat the traffic). The original Woodstock was loaded with unknown artists at the time and many are famous only for their Woodstock performance. Probably won’t go to this festival because the promoter is a greedy shit and my wife will only do these things now if I spring for VIP packages because she won’t share a toilet with the hoi paloi.

      Reply this comment
    • Kariann
      Kariann 22 April, 2019, 18:35

      I hate to say this, but there is so much truth to this reply. Then again, those of us (older) fans realize you’ll never be able to capture to aura, the goals, the protest issues (Vietnam War, Women’s Liberation, and Civil Rights) of the 1969 Festival. Is it that young people today have a different focus on life?

      Reply this comment
    • RknBkr12
      RknBkr12 28 April, 2019, 00:58

      You’re right about everything but the ticket price. $100? Try $450 for a concert NOT on the original grounds, NOT featuring but a scant few known artists. Echo of yesteryear: Pay $450 only to have them open it up for free three hours into the first day. . . Yasgur wouldn’t stand for it. Seems to me that the smell of his BMW is getting to Lang.

      Reply this comment
  2. omstrat
    #2 omstrat 20 March, 2019, 05:51

    Jay-Z you have to be kidding me ..Why is that garbage included in a Woodstock Festival ?

    Reply this comment
    • Sandy
      Sandy 24 March, 2019, 00:46

      Omstrat, you’re right. This is the worst lineup of non performers to be put together. I was at the original & it was amazing because no one expected such a turn out of people. This tribute is a mock to the original concert. Jay Z & Miley Cyrus on the same stage as Santana or The Dead? This is a corporate ripoff put together by Lang & partners for money. They don’t care about music, never did & never will. The town better hire 1000’s of cops coz I think there will be riots & fires like the concert in the 90’s. I also agree with the comment above your comment. Everybody, STAY HOME !!!!

      Reply this comment
    • WW
      WW 29 March, 2019, 10:51

      Jay-Z and Chance The Rapper are “unlikely to incite fans to riot”? Really? That remains to be seen (hopefully a riot will not be seen).

      Reply this comment
  3. JCB
    #3 JCB 20 March, 2019, 08:03

    Chance the Rapper? He would have been laughed off the stage in 1969. Why? because he’s not even a musician. He rhymes words, and very poorly, that isn’t music, it’s garbage.

    Reply this comment
  4. KENNIEE
    #4 KENNIEE 22 March, 2019, 19:40

    WHERE’S MOUNTAIN???

    Reply this comment
    • Jeff Tamarkin
      Jeff Tamarkin 23 March, 2019, 16:25

      Mountain doesn’t exist anymore. Leslie West still performs but for whatever reason he isn’t booked for this festival.

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    • Ezyrider
      Ezyrider 24 March, 2019, 00:55

      Leslie West has had diabetes all his life & had one of his legs amputated from the knee down so I don’t expect him to be playing with these no name performers.

      Reply this comment
  5. Ezyrider
    #5 Ezyrider 24 March, 2019, 01:05

    2019 WOODSTOCK SCAM:
    Someone tell me I’m having a bad trip coz I don’t know 3/4 of the bands that may show up to this mess. Someone should warn the community & police that there may be riots at this show. Classic Rock with Pop & Rap is a menu for disaster times 10. Stay home & stay alive. Jail Lang & Partners.for selling out again to the corporate machine!

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  6. REMEMBER THIS CRITIQUE
    #6 REMEMBER THIS CRITIQUE 29 March, 2019, 00:35

    REMEMBER THIS CRITIQUE: Lang is at If again. The story above states that Lang has spoken to many people regarding crowd control and that’s why he picked the groups himself. What a bunch of BS. On top of that, he stated that he doesn’t expect more than 100K attendees. LMFAO, he said the same thing in “69” & 500K people crashed the gates. The towns mayor & the people living in the town better get their sheet together & cancel this concert. No one will make money except Lang. Remember in “69” Lang said the concert was a bust & they lost all monies but Lang walked away with over $1M which is like $15M in today’s money. Wake up NY State. You’re going to get ripped off by Lang & Partners again. This is not a tribute to Woodstock, it’s another chance for Lang to cash in at everyone else’s expense. To top it off, it’s the worst festival band lineup ever put together. REMEMBER THIS CRITIQUE….

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  7. SAVE WATKINS GLEN FROM VIOLENCE
    #7 SAVE WATKINS GLEN FROM VIOLENCE 21 April, 2019, 00:43

    OMG, the poor people of Watkins Glen are going to regret giving Lang & Partners a permit for this money grubbing riotous sheetshow. WATKINS GLEN….WAKE UP, PLEASE. Lang is asking a few original members of WS69 to participate so he can sell tickets. The fact that he’s adding pop (Miley Cyrus, Ariana Grande) with rock (Santana, Dead & Co) with Hip Hop (Jay Z, Chance The Rapper) is the perfect blend for a 300,000 person riot. They will need the Army, Marines, Navy, Air Force & National Guard present to TRY to maintain order. I predict fights, riots, weapons & worse at this show. If you want to be 100% safe, STAY HOME. This is not PEACE , LOVE & MUSIC. THIS IS A RECIPE FOR DISASTER. My kids don’t want to go, as do many others. PEOPLE, STAY AWAY FROM THIS RIOT

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  8. WG PEOPLE, SAVE UR TOWN!!!!
    #8 WG PEOPLE, SAVE UR TOWN!!!! 23 April, 2019, 00:24

    To save the town of Watkins Glen they need to start a petition against the festival. There will be over 250,000 gathering into the area. Wake up people. You’re about to be overrun by good & bad people which will result in bad vibes. WG you have nothing to gain here & everything to lose. STOP BEFORE ITS TOO LATE. CANCEL PERMITS & REFUND ALL MONIES TO SAVE YOUR TOWN.

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  9. d
    #9 d 24 April, 2019, 12:12

    who the hell is going to spend $300 to drive to the middle of nowhere to see a bunch of acts most people have already seen and I am guessing most people do not have interest in more than a few artists regardless, the other “Woodstocks” worked because it was mainly a rock fest and rock was the king, now there is to many genres of music and there are to many of these festivals

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  10. RknBkr12
    #10 RknBkr12 28 April, 2019, 01:15

    If Lang & Company had a dime bag of integrity, intelligence, and/or sense of honor and history, 2019 would pass with a humble tip of the hat to what was and leave it at that. Many of the artists who played in ’69, which was the ONLY Woodstock Festival, have passed on or are about to. There’s no homage in a cheap, money-grubbing jumble of no-talent wanna-be’s. My only real question is, why would the likes of John Fogerty, John Sebastian, and Dead & Company agree to be associated with this in any way whatsoever? Well, no big deal – it’ll never come off.

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  11. SURPRISE, NO TICKET SALES/NO REFUNDS
    #11 SURPRISE, NO TICKET SALES/NO REFUNDS 30 April, 2019, 09:07

    So here we are 4 months away from this mess called “Woodstock 50” & no ticket sales…I’m not surprised. The Japanese backing firm is dropping out, the tickets are too expensive, they don’t have security in place, most of the bands are unknown & you have to go to 4 stages to see your favorite band….eeeek! This was poorly planned from the start. Mike Lang was just looking to get rich quick like in 1969. He’s a good con man but not this time.
    Save you money coz if it’s cancelled, which is what its looking like, you won’t get a refund. Be smart everyone, save your money & stay home.

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  12. I SMELL LAWSUITS EVERYWHERE
    #12 I SMELL LAWSUITS EVERYWHERE 30 April, 2019, 09:17

    This show hasn’t started & already people are backing out. Remember, NO REFUNDS, so if you pay now & it’s cancelled, YOU’RE BEAT! This should have been an HBO Special tribute with TV sponsorship only featuring rock bands. Something similar to the R ‘n’ R Hall of Fame shows. This is one big clusterphuck now….

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  13. Woodstock 50 CANCELLED?????
    #13 Woodstock 50 CANCELLED????? 2 May, 2019, 00:32

    This is no surprise. The township is reluctant to trust Lang & rightfully so. He was a con man before 1969….he didn’t pay any of the bands & walked away with $1Million. The Japanese backing firm backed out on Monday & the ticket sales are at zero. So no one feels secure enough to be paid. The unknown bands were playing for free and some of the bands from 69 were getting some money & transportation. Security guards won’t get paid either coz Lang wants to pay after the show. Lang is trying to say “Deja Vu” but that was never the case in 69. I bought my tickets in a record shop in early June & everyone was pumped to go. There was never any talk about cancelling. Now there is & it probably will be cancelled. I read in another article that 30% of the bands are dropping out & it’s got a trickle effect in the music biz. It’s all for the best coz you can duplicate a concert but you can’t duplicate the amazing vibe & energy from the original Woodstock. Like the Beatles said…Let It Be….

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  14. NON EXISTENT TICKET SALES
    #14 NON EXISTENT TICKET SALES 6 May, 2019, 01:08

    Things are not looking too good for Lang & Partners. It’s a little over 3 months before this show & tickets have not gone on sale yet. Lang has been unable to secure the permits needed to start selling tickets. Even worse, some of the bands are starting to drop out since the Japanese promo company reported last week & leaked to the press that Woodstock was cancelled. This is a blessing in disguise for everyone including the bands, the fans & especially the people living in Watkins Glen. This festival should have started planning in 2017 (not 12/18) by securing the location, the bands, security, permits, food, toilets, camping, etc.
    Just the fact that there was going to be 4 stages to see bands playing simultaneously made absolutely no sense whatsoever. Lang overplayed his hand & if this festival does happen, it will never be the same as the original. Woodstock 69 was a magical weekend that no one ever imagined or were prepared for but it turned out amazingly beautiful, peaceful & fun in spite of the cold nights & the on & off rain. All of that was $18 for 3 days of well known rock music on one stage not $450 for unknown bands playing on four stages. Lang won’t be able to make the $30 million dollars he thought he’d run away with. Save your money & save Watkins Glen….stay home. Don’t play into Corporate America ripping you off coz that’s exactly what the original festival was fighting against…

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  15. blackjack
    #15 blackjack 8 May, 2019, 01:07

    Hate to say it but WS69 myth is far greater than the actuality. Rolling around in the mud, piss and shit everywhere, no decent food, etc etc, is/was no picnic.
    The real peace, love and music festival was Monterey Pop 1967.
    Forget the myths of WS69…it was an ill-planned event that appears to be recreating itself fifty years on.
    Should you go or not? Better watch the Monterey Pop movie and do some peace and loving locally.
    And if you really want to help the planet take the proposed 450$ or more a ticket will cost and help some poor unfortunates.
    Music is the great equalizer but as soon as it becomes a business it’s nothing but a scam.Hello Mr Lang….

    Reply this comment
    • Wrong, Blackjack....
      Wrong, Blackjack.... 9 May, 2019, 00:39

      WS69 was a great experience for most of us who went. I don’t know where you were sitting but there was no piss or shit around, not even by the toilets coz they had a company come in and cleanup & even bring in more toilets. You probably bought the bad acid that was going around or maybe you didn’t even go. The only thing you wrote that was true was about Lang….

      Reply this comment
  16. TURNING INTO ANOTHER FYRE FESTIVAL FIASCO
    #16 TURNING INTO ANOTHER FYRE FESTIVAL FIASCO 16 May, 2019, 00:32

    This 50th anniversary was doomed from the start. Lang waited way too long to submit his permits & carefully plan out this festival. This was a project that should have taken 2 years to plan, not 6 months. IMO, the ticket prices are way to expensive for a number of reasons:
    1. Most of the performers are 3rd rate musicians & fairly unknown.
    2. The mixture of genres is a big mistake. Rock, Pop & Rap attract totally different crowds that usually don’t like each other’s music.
    3. The 4 stage setup is just plain insane. What will you do if 2 bands you like are playing at the same time or will you have to run from one stage to another to hear the band you like….just a crazy setup.
    4. I’m not sure Lang has employed enough security to control the crowds in case there happens to be a problem.
    Do you remember the FYRE Festival in the Bahamas that was started by Ja-Rule & turned out to be a big ripoff??? That’s the direction this festival is going so save your hard earned money and wait for the documentary to be aired on HBO. It’s so much safer & cheaper….

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    • Jeff Tamarkin
      Jeff Tamarkin 16 May, 2019, 10:59

      Many of your points are valid but the multi-stage setup is standard now for festivals. The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival has had multiple stages for 50 years now and does just fine.

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  17. LANG DESTROYED BY KARMA???
    #17 LANG DESTROYED BY KARMA??? 26 May, 2019, 01:59

    Comments 6, 7, 8, 9, 11,12,13 & 15 were all written by me. I knew this festival would turn into a clusterphuck because it was all about GREED. The entire show was not planned well, the bands were unknowns, the ticket price was way too high, the security was non existent, the permits were not approved, etc, etc, etc. So here you have it folks….NO SHOW. Just lawsuits over who gets the money in the bank. Mike Lang is responsible for this not happening. He’s not a promoter, he’s a professional con man. He didn’t make the original Woodstock happen either. The people, the bands, Max Yasgur & the vibes made Woodstock. Lang walked away with $1 million dollars & called himself a promoter. He is 1000% to blame for this not happening. Karma caught the Con. He doesn’t deserve a penny.

    Reply this comment
    • Mike
      Mike 9 June, 2019, 07:52

      Nailed it. Lang has always been a douche. Remember how everything went south in ’99? Remember Lang saying “not my fault, guys”?

      Much as I despise Fred Durst and his band, they can’t be blamed. They went out and did exactly what you would expect LB to do. Nothing more, nothing less.

      I remember saying “No more Woodstock” after the debacle 20 years ago. But Mikey will never pass up a chance for more $$$.

      Reply this comment
  18. Don
    #18 Don 8 June, 2019, 00:39

    My goodness, what a mess. A few facts (and to verify the facts you should read Barefoot In Babylon, The Creation Of The Woodstock Festival). The money behind the original was from a trust fund of an individual who borrowed against his trust (and wisely kept the rights to the logo and the film) as a means to host a major festival and clean up. That is why he had a fence erected to keep the freebies out. It was not a festival of peace and love but a festival sold as peace and love. Eventually it became a mini-disaster and the US Army had to bail out those who stood against the war in Vietnam and what the US military represented. They flew in medics, tents, supplies, and helped transport the seriously ill/injured out. It may have been a time of peace love and drugs but the intention behind the festival was to make money. Those not willing to pay the fee came in over, under and through the holes in the fences they tore down. Selling peace and love was a marketing tool – listen to the rap from the stage – for those of you who still believe capitalism is not a bad thing, you can buy food etc. etc. History has burnished the original Woodstock festival with a sheen it did not deserve. It was well intended but ultimately poorly run. And those peace loving hippies left an environmental cyclone in their wake and the site was a mass of discarded sleeping bags, tents, and garbage. The true spirit mover was Max Yasgur, one of those old wrinkled people who were generations away from the attendees, the farmer who let the festival happen on his land. He was the spirit of Woodstock. The rest is a myth. I was a Canadian teenager who could not get across the border to attend as the US Customs in my area began to enforce the rule about the minimum amount of money you had to have to sustain yourself for X number of days – it already was a disaster with transportation. Yes, a lot of the acts were established but many were not – Joe Cocker, Santana, Sweetwater to name a few so let this generation have a Woodstock . This will be, by the way, the fifth installment of Woodstock. Sure a lot of those bands I have never heard of but so what. Some of those others are classic but many have passed on and no longer with us, some no longer play, some can but perhaps shouldn’t. Yes, some of you original Woodstockers have become the people we warned each other about.

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  19. LOSER LANG LOSES WOODSTOCK
    #19 LOSER LANG LOSES WOODSTOCK 16 June, 2019, 02:30

    Ive written 6 or 7 statements here & have called it from the beginning. Lang is a con man, has always been a con man & now has lost Woodstock 50. It’s sad I one respect but on the other hand it saved a lot of people money aggravation,disappointment & actually saved the town of Watkins Glen from being torn apart. Lang had 50 years to plan this festival & couldn’t make it work. You go Lang! You showed everyone the true asshole you always were. Now go away and stay out of the promotion business. You’re a born loser!

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  20. The Purging Lutheran
    #20 The Purging Lutheran 16 June, 2019, 09:16

    ”Woodstock 50 belongs to the people!” – but, um, tickets are $450.
    I’ll be glad when the 60s generation dies out.

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  21. Mac
    #21 Mac 4 July, 2019, 05:35

    Wow for people who profess to be about peace, love & music, many of you just seem very angry. Don’t know a lot about Lang and since I was born the year of the original, I can’t argue with comments about that. But I do know about festivals of late as I’ve attended a few with friends, my teen daughter, and her friends. We were both upset to hear about the cancellation as we thought the line-up was good. Those of you who don’t recognize any groups must not have kids, haven’t been paying attention to the music world since the 70s, or need to have a more open mind. My daughter and I know the first two lines of each days’ groups on the ad poster, the rest may be a new experience. For me it would’ve been worth it for Santana, Dead and Company, Robert Plant, John Fogerty, Crosby & Friends, Zombies. But then my daughter and I both like The Lumineers, Cage the Elephant, The Killers, etc. all which known among teens here. Of course it’s not all rock, but a variety of genres brings a variety of people. And it’s not like it’s gangsta rap or speed metal to incite violence, although I could do without the pop singers like Miley Cyrus. We’ve been going every year to the Firefly Festival in Delaware, which has a very similar combination of groups, although a new promoter took it over this year and I didn’t attend because of the lineup. Yes $450 is a lot but that is almost standard for a multi-day festival with camping. But what I’ve noticed every other year is the LACK of violence. 80 some odd thousand getting along and rocking’ out, social statements to increase awareness on issues, people making friends, an all around good time. Isn’t that the spirit of Woodstock? Peace and social change, which is what we need more of these days. Wish it could happen but I do understand it’s quite a risk now with the limited time and all the logistics/planning involved. I guess we’ll go to the Bethel Woods Center, but that’s not really a festival. Anyone know about Yasgur Road Reunion, or Equinunk Camping & Music Festival?

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  22. Lang Wants YOUR Money!!!
    #22 Lang Wants YOUR Money!!! 5 July, 2019, 03:08

    WTF, the balls on this guy. He lost $18M in court last month & now he’s begging for a venue to hold W50 @ nearly $500 a head & take your money to line his greedy pockets. I went to W69 & Lang walked away with over $1M (equiv. to $8M today). There is no place to sleep, You have to leave the venue at 11pm & Lang has no no security or evacuation plans. Keep in mind that 70% of the bands are no names & the other 30% are a mixture of rock, pop & rap. A recipe for disaster. You can watch Santana & then listen to Jay Z…..grrrr. I think not. Save you hard earned money, stay home, safe & watch the tragedy on your local news station on how bad the show is going. Lang is a dirtbag, who could care less about putting on a good show. He over 70 years old looking to retire on your money. Phuck you Mike. Do us all a favor & jump on your bike & ride off into the sunset for good…..

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  23. Chris
    #23 Chris 9 July, 2019, 19:32

    I am disappointed that the event will likely never take place; however, there will never be anything like the original ’69 event. I think it took over a decade to make. Read my book at: https://www.amazon.com/Long-Time-Coming-Woodstock-Inevitable-ebook/dp/B07PSBLYX6

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  24. Woodstock (Rest In Peace)
    #24 Woodstock (Rest In Peace) 12 July, 2019, 02:33

    As I’ve stated before, there will never be another Woodstock like the original. I was there & it was amazing coz we never expected that many people to show up, never expected all the rain that weekend and never expected it to turn out so great but that was then and this is now. Lang could care less about the bands, the people, the site, etc. He’s obviously desperate for the money & he’s not going to get it. The Woodstock legacy is finally going to die on its 50th birthday & in my opinion, it should. All the other Woodstock’s were hosted by corporate America, trying to sell their shit because there were so many people gathered in one place. That wasn’t the case in 1969. It’s time to put it to rest, it’s part of our cultural history and will be remembered as the original mega festivals that paved the way for the festivals we have today. So let’s all say a prayer and bury the Woodstock name forever. As far as Lang goes, let’s just bury him & hope he never makes another penny of our money & goes away never heard from again….

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  25. Willydog
    #25 Willydog 12 July, 2019, 06:28

    RIP Woodstock 50. You cannot recreate the magic of 1969. I’ve got my memories (and my original tickets). August 15th will find me in my backyard. I will roll a few (several) fattys for me and my wife. We will listen to the Dead, the Airplane, CCR and The Band. We will celebrate 3 Days of Peace, Love and Music. We wish the same to all of you.

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    • Jarmo Keranen
      Jarmo Keranen 17 July, 2019, 03:54

      Doesn’t matter if they cannot recreate the magic of 1969. They want to celebrate 50th birthday of Woodstock. What’s wrong with that? They want to recreate memories for the new generation. I hope they can enjoy it without any fattys with music that says something to them. Only problem i see with the artist list is that they should put all the old farts for the same day. I’m a 60 years old fart too!

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  26. Brad
    #26 Brad 17 July, 2019, 09:11

    With the line up of mostly no name artists, I have no doubt townships are skeptical about this. Also, with 45 in office, there is no peace and love in the world. He is destroying the country much worse than the war in Vietnam ever did! Give it a rest people. Miley Cyrus and jay z can just stay home.

    Reply this comment
  27. M.LANGS CLUSTERPHUCK CONTINUES
    #27 M.LANGS CLUSTERPHUCK CONTINUES 26 July, 2019, 00:20

    Three weeks until this mess will TRY to come together & the greedy Lang found a venue in Maryland. Thanks to this moron, who waited until the last minute, they’re still trying to put a festival together. Now they claim to have a venue but guess what??? NO ACTS….LMFAO. Every intelligent artist/band backed out because Lang has no idea what he’s doing. Everyone….do yourselves a favor & stay home. You will end up paying almost $500 to see nobody show up. At this point, Lang will take local Maryland barbands to put on stage.
    There will be a celebration at the original site on the anniversary like there usually is & you’d be better off going there than to Maryland. It will be better, less expensive & probably have a few famous artists show up to pay tribute to the original festival. Phuck Michael Lang people & keep your hard earned money away from this scumbag…..

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  28. Red
    #28 Red 27 July, 2019, 22:35

    What a joke and a half please give ma a break.

    Reply this comment
  29. GO TO BETHEL, NEW YORK
    #29 GO TO BETHEL, NEW YORK 28 July, 2019, 02:07

    Forget about going to Maryland coz all the bands backed out & all you’re going to hear are local bands & the no name musicians that Lang could persuade to play. Go up to the original site to see Ringo, John Fogerty & a few other famous bands that will make surprise appearances. It’s closer to NYC, less expensive & will truly honor the 50th anniversary of Woodstock. Lang’s concert is free coz nobody worth seeing or hearing will be playing….total RIP-OFF.

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  30. BETTER BANDS @ BETHEL, NY
    #30 BETTER BANDS @ BETHEL, NY 29 July, 2019, 02:40

    Since a festival is being held in Maryland under the guise of Woodstock 50 your best bet is to make your way to Bethel, NY. It’s the original site of Woodstock near Max Yasgers old farmland. There will be some original bands from 1969 and many surprise guests that will show up to pay homage to the original festival. It’s a three day festival & you can buy tickets to watch a real concert take place on the original site. Phuck Lang & his free concert. Make your way to Bethel…..

    Reply this comment
  31. Ronnie Konkoma
    #31 Ronnie Konkoma 29 July, 2019, 11:15

    You’d think that they’d have a lineup and a venue nailed down long before now. Hell. the website isn’t even correct as of this AM. So there’s not a lot of confidence the countless small details of managing hundreds of thousands of people have been considered yet.

    This is a train wreck. Stay away..for your own sanity and safety.

    Reply this comment
  32. Nick Name
    #32 Nick Name 29 July, 2019, 11:26

    Reminds me of Goodstock 2007 (do a Youtube search). It would have been a great music festival, but no one showed up!

    Reply this comment
  33. CLUSTERFUCKER.......
    #33 CLUSTERFUCKER....... 1 August, 2019, 01:20

    What person who has 50 years to plan a Golden Anniversary Festival waits until May of that 50th year to get a location, permits, performers, security, etc……well, that person is Michael Lang. A two bit con who got lucky at 20 & made a million dollars on a fluke concert. Back then a million bucks was equivalent to 8 million today. With all that money, in 50 years this jerkoff never amounted to anything. I went to WS in 1969 & that’s how we knew the name & no mention of him until this year. I will go to Bethel for a few days before the concert to help out & see all the bands that will show up there with many surprises. I guess I won’t get to see Jay Z, Miley Cyrus & Chance, the Crapper perform their garbage but the best part is we’ll never have to hear Michael Lang’s name. He will be remembered as the douche that had 50 years to plan a great show but blew it…Look in Wikipedia under “CLUSTERFUCKER” to read the sad life story of Michael Lang.

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  34. Seneca Jam
    #34 Seneca Jam 1 August, 2019, 08:49

    Woodstock 50 may have crashed and burned but Watkinstock is 100% going to happen in Watkins Glen on Saturday, August 17th @ 2pm. Free admission to this multi band concert and all money raised through suggested donations will go toward sending underprivileged children to summer camp for free. https://www.facebook.com/events/1045586802300629/

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  35. Woodstock Ripoff Festivals
    #35 Woodstock Ripoff Festivals 3 August, 2019, 12:24

    Sorry Seneca,
    That’s Watkinstock, not Woodstock. I’m sure your festival has good intentions but its not Woodstock. The real show is in Bethel, NY around the same time. John Fogarty, Ringo, The Dead & many surprise guests will be showing up near the original site of Woodstock. It seems now that every festival happening in two weeks is using WS to attract people. The real deal is in Bethel, NY….nowhere else!

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