Thursday, February 11, 2016

Michael Lang Wants to Put on a 50th Anniversary Woodstock Festival

It's still three years away, but promoter Michael Lang is looking for partners with which to put on a 50th anniversary edition of Woodstock and, possibly, annual events in the years after.

Woodstock, which was originally held in 1969, has seen two festivals held in its name, one in 1994 in Saugerties, NY and one in 1999 in Rome, NY, but the general feeling was that neither was able to recreate the vibe of the original event. In Rome, there were multiple incidents of ATM machines being broken into, attacks on women and a festival ending fire, none of which were a big part of the show in 1969.

Since that time, festivals have become big business. Hundreds are held around the world every year with only minor incidents while people enjoy multiple days of bands, many times on multiples stages.

That's why, even though people might chuckle after the 1994 and 1999 shows, the viability of another festival in the name of Woodstock is not that far fetched an idea.

Lang recently talked with the Poughkeepsie Journal saying that, with all of these new festivals, it might be time to resurrect the Woodstock name. He now needs to get partners on board along with identifying potential locations. In all likelihood, the property that belonged to farmer Max Yasgur that was the location for the 1969 festival will no longer be suitable as it is now the site for the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts. The performing arts center is not configured for a festival size crowd.

Lang tried to put together a 40th anniversary show in 2009 but was not able to find the support.