One of the chief vehicles for the Counterculture assault on the status quo was music, of which the pinnacle event was the Woodstock Music and Art Fair in August of 1969.

The three-day concert derived its name from the small community of Woodstock, where the event was supposed to have taken place. But city officials turned the organizers away, so the show settled about 60 miles southwest on Max Yasgur's 600-acre dairy farm in Bethel.

Woodstock was assembled through the combined resources of two visionary hippies, Artie Kornfeld and Michael Lang, coupled with two young venture capitalists, John Roberts and Joel Rosenman. Although the festival was remarkably peaceful given the number of people and the conditions involved, there were two recorded fatalities—one from what was believed to be a heroin overdose; another caused by an occupied sleeping bag accidentally being run over by a tractor in a nearby hayfield. There were also two births recorded at the event (one in a car caught in traffic and the other in a helicopter) and four miscarriages. Oral testimony in the film supports the two deaths and at least one birth,


The list of Woodstock performers was incredible—a virtual Who's Who of current rock and roll. Many of the participants are by now in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (the concert's second day alone featured eight future inductees), while a few disappeared into obscurity (their presence at Woodstock not even etched into the memorial plaque), and several are in rock and roll heaven (over the years, drugs claimed the lives of numerous band members). As impressive as the field of performers was at Woodstock, there were a number of near-misses that were regrettable alike for concert goers and the musicians themselves.

  Richie Havens  

The opening day of the Woodstock Music and Art Fair was designed to be primarily folk music. The advertised start time was 4:00 pm. Due to calamity created by the traffic jam, many of the first-day performers were stranded at nearby motels while event management was feverishly trying to keep the itinerary reasonably intact and fill the voids in any way possible. Woodstock officials made arrangements for helicopters to shuttle musicians and equipment, but as of 4:00 only two performers were at the concert site, neither of whom was the scheduled opening act. One was seriously stoned; the other seemed ready, although reluctant. At 5:07, dressed in an orange dashiki and roomy white pants, Richie Havens walked on stage and began playing "Minstrel from Gault." Finally, after countless glitches, the greatest "three days of peace and music" in history was officially underway! There is wide discrepancy about performers' actual start times throughout the concert; the single moment on which everyone associated with the concert agrees is 5:07. Havens was a music festival veteran and had released several record albums, but his chance position as Woodstock's opening set established him as one of the most impacting performers there—an image that boosted his popularity in subsequent years. Havens played for nearly two hours, constantly prodded by concert personnel waiting for additional musicians to arrive. His last song, "Freedom," was largely improvised. It is one of the half dozen most iconoclastic songs of the entire concert. When finished, Havens was immediately transported by helicopter to the nearby town of Liberty, then drove himself to Newark International Airport where he boarded a flight to another performance the next day. Havens recalled his drive to New Jersey: "I was the only person on the New York Thruway going south." After Havens, Swami Satchadinanda, accompanied by an entourage of white-clad disciples, took the stage and offered a ten-minute impromptu invocation of peace and love to the crowd. There was notable interest among the Counterculture youth in Hindu-related theology and yoga-inspired meditation regimens, and, considering the concert's schedule crisis, the response by the production coordinator to the Sri Lanka guru 's request to address the crowd was predictable: "Why not?"

  Sweetwater    Bert Sommer    Tim Hardin    Ravi Shankar  
The next two-plus hours were filled with four performers all of whom are rather obscure in Woodstock annals—two of them are not even listed on the concert's memorial plaque! None would ever achieve notable success in the music entertainment business after their Woodstock appearances. At about 7:30, Sweetwater came on stage. The band had already performed at several big rock concerts and enjoyed mild recognition even though it had no hit single and only one album. According to Sweetwater's contract, the group was supposed to be the opening act because one of the band members recently enlisted in the Air Force reserves (to avoid active duty in Vietnam) and had orders to report for training the very next day in California. Sweetwater represented the lone deviation from folk-rock among the first-day Woodstock acts. Four months after the concert, lead singer Nancy Nevins was involved in an automobile accident hit by a drunken driver, suffered damaged vocal cord that never healed properly. Sweetwater performed briefly without Nevins, awaiting her recovery, but disbanded in 1971. Bert Sommer performed next. Even with the Woodstock appearance—his hour-long set included a standing ovation—Sommer's most memorable link to Counterculture history had already occurred. His frizzy Afro-style hair style was featured on the poster for the 1968 Broadway show Hair. Sommer released three albums after Woodstock. He died in 1990 after a long battle with respiratory illness. Tim Hardin took the stage shortly after 9:00. Talented, but heroin-addicted, his set was a disaster . According to one musician, after a strong start, Hardin announced a song that had not yet been written. The band dutifully improvised as best as possible, but the piece rapidly deteriorated. Hardin died of a drug overdose in 1980 at age 39. Ravi Shankar, a classical sitar player from India, performed for about half an hour until about 10:30, when his set was terminated by rain. He later introduced George Harrison of The Beatles to Eastern music. In 1977, he received India's highest civilian accolade, the Bharat Ratna. He is the father of jazz singer-pianist Norah Jones.

Melanie does not appear on the concert poster. That's because she wasn't invited; she invited herself. Several days prior to the concert, 22-year-old Melanie Safka (her age has been reported as low as 15) happened to strike up a conversation with one of the concert promoters. When he mentioned the music festival he was planning, she asked if she could sing there, and the answer was a very laid-back "sure." Safka traveled to Woodstock with her mother, but only Melanie made it aboard the helicopter to the concert itself. Since her attendance was unofficial, she hadn't been issued a performer's pass. Consequently, the stage security initially thought she was just one of the concert goers trying to get on stage. She had to show her driver's license and sing some of her song before they let her pass. The story goes that when she saw the size of the Woodstock crowd she would be playing for—Safka later explained that she thought the event was nothing more than some sort of music festival in the park—she developed a bit of stage fright in the form of a cough that resonated back stage. Someone in the next tent sent her some soothing tea. That kindly neighbor was Joan Baez. Melanie performed only two songs at Woodstock, but she captivated the audience and launched a mildly successful career. Just prior to her performance the festival production coordinator solicited the concert goers to each light a match to reveal the true enormity of the crowd. That incident inspired Melanie's 1970 hit song "Lay Down (Candles in the Rain)." In 1989, she won an Emmy for music in the TV show Beauty and the Beast.

  Arlo Guthrie    Joan Baez  
The last two performances of Woodstock's first day were Arlo Guthrie, son of legendary folk singer Woody Guthrie, and Joan Baez, the leading female voice of the folk-song movement, who was six months pregnant at the time. Guthrie's identification with the Counterculture came from his 18½ minute Vietnam protest song "Alice's Restaurant Massacre" of two years earlier. He started just prior to midnight and performed three songs. Baez was twice a victim of the concert's first-day confusion. She was initially scheduled to open the concert, but was delayed. Then, Baez apparently played for some 40 minutes at the free stage (the only major performer to do so) set up outside the fence for amateur bands to play for people who did not obtain tickets. before her manager informed her that she was to play on the big stage. Whether or not she actually intended her free stage performance to be is unclear. Her actual concert set included five songs (she played seven on the free stage). She began by telling the crowd of her husband who had been arrested in July by federal marshals for refusing to honor a draft notice. Baez ended Woodstock's first day with "We Shall Overcome," emblematic of the American Civil Rights Movement. Her musical career and activist work have continued since Woodstock.


  Quill    The Keef Hartley Band  

The second day of Woodstock was inundated with most of the concert's psychedelic and guitar rock performers. At just after 1:00, Quill played the first song of the day to a crowd damp from steady morning rain. Quill was a popular band based in the Northeast known for tossing maracas into the audience as an invitation to join in. According to some accounts this day was apparently not one for them to remember fondly—the band played just four songs to a lackluster, mud-caked crowd before exiting in frustration after 40 minutes. Other sources claim that Quill was received enthusiastically by the audience happy to finally see the sun poke through clearing skies. Take your pick. A technical hitch (the audio and video were not synchronized) kept Quill out of the Woodstock movie. Quill disbanded altogether less than a year later. Next on stage was a talented drummer from England named Keef Hartley. In 1962, Hartley replaced Ringo Starr when he left to join The Beatles. There is no film or audio record of their performance at Woodstock (apparently their manager refused to have them filmed without a written contract), leading some sources to completely omit the band when tracking the Woodstock acts. While his presence is certain, his exact set list is impossible to determine. The group mixed elements of jazz, blues, and rock and roll. Their sound was compared favorably to Blood, Sweat & Tears, another band that would play later in the day and eventually become successful. Sandwiched between Quill and Keef Hartley were two famous fill-ins.

  Country Joe McDonald  
With concert officials still scrambling to fill the fractured agenda, Country Joe McDonald agreed to appear after Quill. McDonald was scheduled to play with his band, The Fish, as part of the third day's line-up, so he actually performed twice at Woodstock. He is remembered most for his Saturday acoustic solo set when he orchestrated his now famous "FISH Cheer." Originally the "gimme-an-F" spelled F-I-S-H, but at one concert McDonald spontaneously modified it to spell another four letter word beginning with F and so it was at Woodstock. McDonald's "I-Feel-Like-I'm-Fixin'-To-Die Rag," also a part of his first set, became one of the handful of songs most historically identified with the entire concert. As it turned out, it's also the high point of his musical career. In 1974, he appeared in a Pepsi commercial featuring a Woodstock reunion for yuppies.

  John Sebastian  
John Sebastian, lead singer for the recently disbanded The Lovin' Spoonful, wasn't even under contract to perform at Woodstock, but happened to be milling about the backstage area and, amidst all the confusion, was prevailed upon to do a solo set. He borrowed a guitar from Tim Hardin. Sebastian's career was sputtering, and just a few months before Woodstock he was living in a California commune with hippies who sold bright multi-colored shirts by a process they called "tie-dye" to create bright multi-colored random patterns There are two memorable elements of Sebastian's Woodstock appearance are not musical. His verbal rambling on stage offered several phrases parodically associated with hippies. He was so high on LSD that he forgot the words to one of his songs and asked the audience for help. His name is misspelled ("Sabastian") on the Woodstock memorial plaque. He would later compose the theme music for a 1976 TV sitcom entitled Welcome Back, Kotter, which reached #1 on the charts. The Lovin' Spoonful was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2000. More recently, Sebastian has co-hosted a half-hour televison program called The Golden Age of Rock and Roll, which was essentially a lengthy commercial for a 1960s and 1970s era rock CD compilation. His dialogue was much more discernible than his Woodstock. After playing a portion of "I Had A Dream," he stops singing and implores the crowd to "everybody sing—help me out!" Such crowd participation is common at rock concerts, so it seems that Sebastian is simply following suit. But in truth, he forgot the words to his own song!

Some sources consider Santana, came on stage at about 5:15, the real beginning of day two. Santana's performance at Woodstock is one of the concert's sensations. No album; no following. Kicked off a spectacular career. Under the assumption that the band's turn on stage was still several hours away, Carlos Santana took mescaline. "I thought, 'If I take it now, by the time I come to play I'll be coming down and life is beautiful," you know? Wrong!" They were shoved on stage The live Woodstock version lengthy "Soul Sacrifice" has appeared on several Santana albums/CDs over the years. Santana has flourished since Woodstock with a variety of personnel (original organist Gregg Rolie left to form the band Journey). Guitarist/singer Carlos Santana strategically extended his popularity into the next century, recording albums and registering hits with musicians more popular with the younger audience, such as Dave Matthews, Rob Thomas of Matchbox Twenty, Michelle Branch, and Chad Kroeger of Nickelback. The strategy has enabled Santana to widen his fan base while maintaining his Santana's "Supernatural" won the 2000 Grammy Award for Best Rock Album of the Year.

  Incredible String Band    Canned Heat    Mountain  
Canned Heat and Mountain were the next two performers, but the order in which the bands appeared is sometimes reversed. band played before the other Canned Heat broke up in 1976. Guitarist Al "Blind Owl" Wilson died of a drug overdose in 1970. In 1981, vocalist Bob "The Bear" Hite died from a drug-related heart attack. Mountain split in 1972. Bass player Felix Pappalardi was shot and killed by his wife in 1983. Guitarist Leslie West released a solo album in 1988. According to most sources, the next performance was a Scottish group called The Incredible String Band, known for Raga Rock, a combination of Indian music and rock 'n' roll. The band was originally slated for Thursday night, but refused to perform once the rain started. The group disbanded in 1973. One of the band members, female bassist Rose Simpson, would later become the mayor of a town in Wales. Starting around 8:00,

  Grateful Dead  
The Grateful Dead remained popular for years as a cult band without numerous Top Forty hits. The more recent equivelent of The Grateful Dead is Phish, although not nearly so musically talented as The Dead. Keyboardist Ron "Pigpen" McKernan died of a liver ailment in 1973.Grateful Dead's performance was plagued by technical problems, including a faulty electrical ground and members Jerry Garcia and Bob Weir reported getting shocked every time they touched their guitars.

  Creedence Clearwater Revival  
The timing of Woodstock couldn't have been better for Creedence Clearwater Revival. The band was in the midst of a short-lived existence, just far enough along in its hit parade to make it a huge audience attraction, and at the same time create additional momentum for future hits (10 Top Ten songs between 1968 and 1971). Its song list would make a pretty good "greatest hits, volume one" collection. CCR, wrought with internal bickering, disbanded in 1972. Rhythm guitarist and singer Tom Fogerty (he actually left the band prior to its demise) pursued a solo career that never really went anywhere. His one bona fide hit, "Joyful Resurrection," sounds remarkably like Creedence material. In fact, his three Creedence bandmates all perform the song, although some of the parts were dubbed in. He died in 1990 at age 48 from AIDS (specifically from a tuberculosis infection), having contracted HIV from blood transfusions for back ailments. Drummer Doug "Cosmo" Clifford and bassist Stu Cook, after some individual musical endeavors, formed a band called Creedence Clearwater Revisited which plays all of the CCR hits. The band is difficult to listen to for real CCR aficionados—imagine listening to The Beatles without Paul McCartney or The Rolling Stones without Mick Jaggar. The overwhelming talent behind CCR's success, lead singer and guitarist, John Fogerty, went on from his Creedence days to a successful solo career. His 1984 song "Centerfield" is still played often enough as a rock 'n' roll baseball anthem (iin 2010 the song became an official entry in the Cooperstown Hall of Fame) . For years, he refused to play any of the Creedence songs, almost all of which he wrote, citing bitterness and bad memories of the break-up, including publishing disputes with the band's record label company, Fantasy. In 1987, he relinquished, to the pleasure of CCR fans, when he performed in Washington, D.C. for Vietnam veterans. The animosity between Fogerty and the others has never eased. He was still estranged from his brother When he died. When CCR was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1993, Fogerty publically displayed his animosity with his former band mates by refusing to play with them. Fogerty's "Blue Moon Swamp" won the 1997 Grammy Award for Best Rock Album of the Year. He released "Revival" in 2008.

  Janis Joplin  
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  Sly & The Family Stone  
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  The Who  
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  Jefferson Airplane  
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  Joe Cocker  

Woodstock's third day began when Englishman Joe Cocker took the stage around 2:00 in the afternoon. His appearance was preceded by at least two instrumentals by The Grease Band. Cocker's performance is one of the most widely identified acts of the concert. Onstage, he exhibited an idiosyncratic physical intensity, flailing his arms, playing air guitar, and giving superfluous cues to his band. In 1976, Cocker's abnormal stage movements was impersonated by John Belushi on "Saturday Night Live." After Cocker's performance, the concert was interrupted by a sizeable rain storm. During the interum, Max Yasgur, the dairy farmer on whose land Woodstock was occurring, addressed the crowd. "I'm a farmer. I don't know how to speak to twenty people at one time, let alone a crowd like this. But I think you people have proven something to the world—not only to the Town of Bethel, or Sullivan County, or New York State—you've proven something to the world.…We have had no idea that there would be this size group, and because of that you've had quite a few inconveniences as far as water, food, and so forth. Your producers have done a mammoth job to see that you're taken care of; they'd enjoy a vote of thanks. But above that, the important thing that you've proven to the world is that a half a million kids—and I call you kids because I have children that are older than you are—a half million young people can get together and have three days of fun and music and have nothing but fun and music, and I God Bless You for it!" Not all the locals agreed with Yasgur—one unidentified area resident, when asked his opinion of the whole affair, quipped: "You want me to explain it in plain words? It’s a shitty mess."

  Country Joe & The Fish  
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  Ten Years After  
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  The Band  
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  Blood, Sweat & Tears  
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  Johnny Winter  
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  Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young  
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  Paul Butterfield Blues Band  
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  Sha Na Na  
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  Jimi Hendrix  
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Several performers narrowly missed, for various reasons, being part of history's greatest rock concert. Perhaps the most famous near-miss was Joni Mitchell. She cancelled the day prior because she feared getting stuck in traffic and missing her scheduled prime time television appearance on The Dick Cavett Show. She was actually travelling to Bethel with some other musicians when she had the last-minute change of heart (reportedly stirred by her manager). Still, Mitchell is an everlasting part of the Woodstock legacy. She composed the song that became the concert's anthem—simply entitled "Woodstock"—when it was recorded by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young in 1970. Canadian group Lighthouse renegged on an agreement to play at Woodstock fearing that it might turn into a bad scene and create negative publicity ultimately harmful to the group's chance for success. The band's biggest hit, "One Fine Morning," peaked at #24 in 1971. Ethan Brown, a solo guitarist popular among the hippies, missed his chance because he was arrested on drug charges three days before the concert. Interestingly, whereas Joni Mitchell, Lighthouse, and Ethan Brown reportedly signed to play at Woodstock, it's next to impossible to find them listed on concert posters and programs printed weeks ahead of the concert. Conversely, some print lists Nick Benes and Jack Harrison (who?) as performers.

The Jeff Beck Group (with lead singer Rod Stewart) and The Moody Blues were both listed among the day three performers on early Woodstock posters and handbills. The former dissolved a week before the concert; the latter, as it turned out, was already booked in Paris on the Woodstock dates. Iron Butterfly—fondly remembered for their one and only hit "In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida"—became stranded at the airport because of the traffic jam. The group's manager, ignoring pleas for patience amid the existing chaos, insisted on immediate transportation and special treatment once the band arrived at the actual event site. Concert officals informed the obstinate manager that his requests would be processed and he would be called back soon with details. In truth, the demands were hardly given a second thought. The decision was made, under the circumstances, to simply make do without Iron Butterfly. The next communication to the band was a graphic equivalent of "get lost."

There are two explanations commonly offered for the absence of The Doors. One account claims the band was not extended an invitation because of the wild X-rated antics of lead singer Jim Morrison. The more credible story is that Morrison's increasing paranoia, bolstered by a recent drug bust, convinced him that outdoor venues should be avoided because he was a prime target for assassination. (There's actually a term for such a fear—"agoraphobia.")


The list of notable performers who blew opportunities to play at Woodstock grows. Some alleged refusals are based on hearsay; others are more verifiable. The most notorius snub came from Bob Dylan. Concert organizers and attendees alike assumed that Dylan would appear since he lived just a 90-minute drive from Bethel (in the concert's namesake town). In fact, he wanted nothing to do with it. "Woodstock—I didn't want any part of that thing....That didn't excite me....I wasn't into that at all. I just thought it was a lot of kids out and around wearing flowers in their hair, takin' a lot of acid. I mean, what can you think about that?" Instead, he signed to play at a concert in England later in the month and on Woodstock's opening day was boarding an ocean liner to travel across the Atlantic. Led Zeppelin were asked to perform, but decided to play somewhere else because the pay was higher and their manager reasoned that, given the sizable Woodstock agenda, Led Zeppelin would "have just been another band on the bill." John Lennon was contacted regarding the possibility of reviving The Beatles (the "Fab Four" hadn't done a concert since 1966). Lennon replied that whereas The Beatles would be unavailable, his wife's Plastic Ono Band would be willing to perform. Nothing materialized because Lennon was denied entrance into the United States by Nixon immigration officials owing to drug arrest charges the previous year. Some sources cite disinterest in Yoko Lennon's band as a significant contributing factor. Interestingly, the absence of The Beatles, as well as The Rolling Stones (it's unclear whether The Stones were ever actually contacted about taking part), was not overly upsetting to Woodstock organizers. According to one concert official, the two rock 'n' roll giants would have "overpowered" the festival line-up: "Woodstock was not intended to be about any one band...." (Sour grapes?) Indeed, this was reflected in the contract arrangement with Jimi Hendrix. Hendrix had initially insisted on headline billing, common in the music concert business. The headliner format meant that the performer would be first and foremost on all radio and print ads, as well as the event's finale. However, the Woodstock organizers had decided all artists would be treated uniformly—listed alphabetically and with the same typeface on posters (obviously, Hendrix acquiesced).

The Byrds turned Woodstock down because the group had fresh in their minds was a melee at a July concert in Atlanta. British group Procol Harum were invited but refused because Woodstock fell at the end of a long tour and, as well, coincided with the due date of guitarist and expectant father Robin Trower (as it turned out, the birth was two weeks late). Jethro Tull declined an invitation. The reason is obscure, but the story offered most is that lead singer and flutist Ian Anderson didn't think the event would amount to much more than a "...weekend in a field of unwashed hippies." Johnny Cash, prior to achieving his status as a country music legend, and Donovan, a British singer-songwriter and guitar player with a unique sound, both declined for unspecified reasons. The popular folk rock duo Simon & Garfunkel apparently weren't interested in doing any more appearances for a time, tired of being together after a busy spring concert schedule. Other performers reported to have rejected offers include Free, an English band best known for its massive hit "All Right Now," Eric Clapton, the only three-time inductee to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (as a member of The Yardbirds and Cream as well as solo efforts) Paul Revere and the Raiders, The Mothers of Invention, Tommy James and the Shondells, Mind Garage, a Christian psychedelic rock band from West Virginia before the genre of Christian rock was common, and Spirit, a relatively unknown group out of California. One of the concert promotors "had his heart set" on enlisting actor and country crooner Roy Rogers to finish the concert with his theme song "Happy Trails to You." Years later, Rogers revealed his simple reason for refusing the offer: "I would've been booed off the stage by all those goddamn hippies."


Less than a year after the concert, Warner Bros. released the movie Woodstock, a documentary presentation of the entire Woodstock festival experience, showing not only the music of Woodstock, but ample footage of concert management, hippies in attendance, and local community reaction. As a whole, the musical portion of the movie is somewhat disappointing. Several key performers are not featured, owing to technical problems, director's decision, and issues originating with some performers themselves—Keef Hartley's manager refused to have the band filmed in the first place; John Fogerty, unhappy with CCR's performance, balked at granting permission for Creedence to be included; Neil Young did not want himself filmed when he was when he was on stage with Crosby, Stills & Nash. As for the acts which do appear in the movie, some were not shown performing one of their signature "best of" selections (which, let's be honest, most of us prefer if we're limited to just one song per performer). Still, some meaningful historical moments are captured—Joan Baez's account of her husband's arrest for failing to report for duty after being drafted, John Sebastian's hippie-esque verbal ramble on stage, Country Joe McDonald's "FISH Cheer," and the rain interruption of the concert's third day, among others. The movie's performance highlights are Richie Havens ("Freedom"), Joe Cocker ("With a Little Help from My Friends"), Crosby, Stills & Nash ("Suite: Judy Blue Eyes"), Ten Years After ("I'm Going Home"), Santana ("Soul Sacrifice"), and Jimi Hendrix ("The Star-Spangled Banner"). Woodstock was a box-office hit. By 1999, the film had grossed over $100 million. The soundtrack album, on the Atlantic label, was similarly successful.

In 1994, the "Director's Cut" (subtitled 3 Days of Peace & Music) was released that added over 40 minutes to the already lengthy film. Performances by Canned Heat, Jefferson Airplane, and Janis Joplin, all absent from the original movie, were included. Additionally, Jimi Hendrix's set at the end of the film was extended by two additional songs. Some of the crowd scenes in the 1970 film were replaced by previously unseen segments.

Two expanded versions were released in 2009. A remastered "40th Anniversary Edition" was issued both as "Special Edition" (two discs) and "Ultimate Collector’s Edition" (three discs) available in Blu-ray and DVD formats. Included are two extra hours of concert footage, comprised of 18 never-before-seen performances from 13 acts, namely Joan Baez, Country Joe McDonald, Santana, The Who, Jefferson Airplane, Canned Heat, and Joe Cocker plus five—Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Creedence Clearwater Revival, The Grateful Dead, Mountain, and Johnny Winter—which played at Woodstock but never appeared in any film version.

Since 1996, Woodstock: 3 Days of Peace and Music is officially preserved in the United States National Film Registry, designated by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically" significant. All of the various Woodstock movies are rated R for nudity, profanity, and frequent display of drug use.



    Handsome Johnny
    Coming Into Los Angeles
    Soul Sacrifice
    Going Up The Country
    Green River
    Ninety-Nine And A Half (Won't Do)
    I Put A Spell On You
  Try (Just A Little Bit Harder)
  Dance To The Music
  Music Lover
  I Want To Take You Higher
  See Me, Feel Me
  Somebody To Love
  White Rabbit
  Let's Go Get Stoned
  With A Little Help From My Friends

  Rock And Soul Music
  I'm Going Home
  Mean Town Blues
  Suite: Judy Blue Eyes
  At The Hop
  Voodoo Child (Slight Return)
  Stepping Stone
  The Star-Spangled Banner


Select the best response for each item according to information learned via lectures and reading assignments.

  1. The Counterculture Movement was characterized by:
    1. organized attacks on traditional cultural values
    2. varied student protests against the "Establishment"
    3. revival of middle-class standards
    4. general support of Republican Party policies

  2. The Woodstock Music and Art Fair took place during August of 1969 in the small New York town of:
    1. Saugerties
    2. Wallkill
    3. Bethel
    4. Woodstock

  3. Of the following events, the one which occurred closest to the Woodstock concert is:
    1. the Twenty-sixth Amendment—lowering voting age from 21 to 18 years—was ratified
    2. American astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first humans to set foot on the Moon
    3. incumbent President Richard Nixon walloped the Democratic Party's "peace candidate," Senator George McGovern of South Dakota, to win another four years in the White House
    4. Earth Day was founded to inspire awareness and appreciation for the Earth's natural environment

  4. American society during the 1960s was characterized by:
    1. patriotism and racial unity
    2. conformity and economic prosperity
    3. political concensus and social stability
    4. affluence and social fragmentation

  5. The California urban district recognized as a hippie mecca during the Counterculture Era is:
    1. Boyle Heights
    2. Greenwich Village
    3. Haight-Ashbury
    4. Venice Beach

  6. Of the following, the remark least likely to have rolled off the tongue of a hippie is:
    1. "make love, not war"
    2. "sock it to me"
    3. "be kind, please rewind"
    4. "power to the people"

  7. The emergence of the music genre known as rock and roll:
    1. relied heavily on black musical traditions
    2. was a spin-off from British popular music of the time
    3. adapted many of the big band tunes of the 1940s
    4. had relatively little impact on American culture compared to other music forms such as jazz and reggae

  8. Woodstock's dove-and-guitar logo was created by:
    1. Abbie Hoffman
    2. Michael Lang
    3. Arnold Skolnick
    4. Max Yasgur

  9. The musical instrument featured on the original artwork for the Woodstock poster was a/an:
    1. tamborine
    2. accordion
    3. flute
    4. saxophone

  10. All of the following situations created lengthy delays and interruptions in the Woodstock concert schedule except:
    1. traffic jams
    2. extended sets by some performers
    3. inclement weather
    4. fights and drug arrests in the crowd

  11. Most of the musicians at Woodstock were transported to the concert site in:
    1. helicopters
    2. school buses
    3. limousines
    4. police cars

  12. By many accounts (some historical discrepancy exists), the very first song performed at Woodstock was:
    1. "Dance to the Music" by Sly & the Family Stone
    2. "The Star-Spangled Banner" by Jimi Hendrix
    3. "Going Up the Country" by Canned Heat
    4. "Minstrel from Gault" by Richie Havens

  13. No performer at Woodstock is more historically identified with the Counterculture Era than Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. The group formed just prior to the concert, its members emigrating from all of the following bands except:
    1. The Byrds
    2. Buffalo Springfield
    3. The Hollies
    4. Strawberry Alarm Clock

  14. The 1962 book credited with launching the national environmental movement by significantly jolting the awareness of Americans regarding threats to the natural ecology is:
    1. Howl by Allen Ginsberg
    2. Silent Spring by Rachel Carson
    3. Go Ask Alice by Grace Slick
    4. Blind Eye by James Stewart

  15. All of the following were characteristic of reform activity during both the Progressive Era and the 1960s except:
    1. feminists advocated reform in the area of women's rights
    2. civil rights for blacks were supported by the federal government
    3. governmental reform initiatives were curtailed by war
    4. reform occurred despite the absence of severe economic depression

  16. During the 1960s, the highest percentage of America’s blacks lived in:
    1. larger cities
    2. small rural communities
    3. elite suburbs
    4. gymnasiums

  17. All of the following were sites of heated race-related events during the 1960s except the:
    1. Sixteenth Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama
    2. Watts district of Los Angeles, California
    3. Dixie Hotel in Macon, Georgia
    4. Woolworth's Store in Greensboro, North Carolina

  18. The peace sign, an everlasting icon associated with the Counterculture Era, actually originated in England over a decade before the Woodstock festival. The two letters clandestinely represented by the symbol are:
    1. N and D for "Nuclear Disarmament"
    2. W and P for "World Peace"
    3. G and B for "Global Brotherhood"
    4. S and W for "Stop War"

  19. All of the following are correct regarding Woodstock performer John Sebastian except:
    1. his name is misspelled on the concert’s memorial plaque
    2. among the thousands of parked vehicles jamming roads leading to the concert site, his van was the only one ticketed by the New York Highway Patrol
    3. during his performance he forgot the words to one of his own songs
    4. since he was not among the scheduled acts and therefore had not planned to play, he was forced to borrow another performer’s guitar

  20. One of the leading books regarding women’s liberation, published in 1963, was:
    1. The Invisible Man by Helen Gurley Brown
    2. Muffin Tins and Rolling Pins by Ida Tarbell
    3. The Feminine Mystique by Betty Friedan
    4. Unsafe at Any Speed by Patricia Roberts Harris

  21. The National Organization for Women (NOW) was founded in 1966 for the purpose of:
    1. challenging sex discrimination in the workplace
    2. advocating equal access for women to athletic facilities
    3. encouraging women to enlist in the armed forces
    4. opposing restrictions regarding access to abortion

  22. Of the following bands which did not appear at the Woodstock concert but nevertheless had significant impact on the rock and roll music scene during the Counterculture Era, the one that came closest to playing at Woodstock is:
    1. Deep Purple
    2. Cream
    3. Led Zeppelin
    4. Three Dog Night

  23. The only performer to do two separate sets (different days; unplanned) at Woodstock is:
    1. Country Joe McDonald
    2. Santana
    3. Janis Joplin
    4. Blood, Sweat & Tears

  24. The deep divisions within the American public during 1968 were demonstrated by all of the following except:
    1. shooting deaths of four students at Kent State University by Ohio national guardsmen during an anti-war campus protest
    2. votes generated by the presidential campaign of avowed segregationist Governor George Wallace of Alabama
    3. assassinations of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Senator Robert F. Kennedy
    4. so-called "police riots" at the Democratic National Convention in Chicago

  25. All of the following irregularities occurred at Woodstock except:
    1. one performer announced a song to be played that had not actually been yet composed (the band dutifully tried to muddle through it)
    2. the stage announcer introduced one of the acts incorrectly (based on some of the musicians' former band memberships)
    3. one singer forgot the words to the song he was in the midst of singing (he asked the crowd for help)
    4. two performers, lost in the agenda confusion, took the stage simultaneously (after some tense moments, Woodstock management helped diffuse the awkward situation)

  26. As reported to the American public, the United States government measured its success in Vietnam according to:
    1. enemy body count
    2. number of bombs dropped on target
    3. radio and television news accounts
    4. square miles of enemy territory captured

  27. The brunt of the public’s negative reaction to the Vietnam War was felt most by:
    1. United States government foreign policy makers
    2. activists and hippies who staged anti-war demonstrations
    3. American troops returning from war
    4. foreign diplomats from Southeast Asian countries conducting business in the United States

  28. While hippies were challenging aspects of American lifestyle and the government's role in Vietnam, a 1969 country and western song counter-attacked the hippies. The chart-topping hit which boasted, among other things, that "we don't smoke marijuana; we don't take our trips on LSD; we don't burn our draft cards down on Main Street; we like livin' right and bein' free; we don't let our hair grow long and shaggy like the hippies out in San Francisco do" was:
    1. "Skip a Rope" by Henson Cargill
    2. "Green, Green Grass of Home" by Bobby Bare
    3. "Ring of Fire" by Johnny Cash
    4. "Okie from Muskogee" by Merle Haggard

  29. All of the following Woodstock musicians and bands are correctly matched except:
    1. John Fogerty: vocals & lead guitar / Creedence Clearwater Revival
    2. Grace Slick: vocals / Jefferson Airplane
    3. Alvin Lee: vocals & lead guitar / Ten Years After
    4. Roger Daltrey: vocals & rhythm guitar / Grateful Dead

  30. The advertised one-day admission price at Woodstock was:
    1. $7
    2. $18
    3. $55
    4. free/donation

  31. All of the following colorful hit songs of the Woodstock period were performed at the concert except:
    1. "Green River"
    2. "Purple Haze"
    3. "White Rabbit"
    4. "Brown Sugar"

  32. Rock and roll's twin elements of hope and despair were symbolized by two memorable concerts occurring just four months apart; whereas the peaceful dream was Woodstock, the violent nightmare was:
    1. Isle of Wight
    2. Altamont
    3. the Deadwood Jam
    4. Live Aid

  33. The Counterculture Era coincided with the "muscle car" craze, arguably the greatest period in American automotive history. Higher insurance premiums, heightened safety concerns, tougher environmental laws, and the 1973 OPEC oil embargo combined to ruin the fun. The car which introduced the powerful Rocket 455 CID (7.5 L) V-8 engine in 1968 was the:
    1. Oldsmobile 442
    2. Dodge Charger
    3. Ford Torino
    4. Pontiac GTO

  34. All of the following post-Woodstock songs were written about the concert except:
    1. "Who'll Stop the Rain" by Creedence Clearwater Revival
    2. "Lay Down" by Melanie
    3. "Woodstock" by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young
    4. "Rock and Roll Music to the World" by Ten Years After

  35. The high inflation rates of the late 1960s and early 1970s were primarily the result of:
    1. government deregulation of many major industries
    2. combined spending on the Vietnam War as well as social-welfare programs
    3. flawed economic measures dating back to the New Deal of the 1930s
    4. numerous state and federal tax increases

  36. All of the following songs have evolved into Woodstock "anthems" except:
    1. "Freedom" by Richie Havens
    2. "I-Feel-Like-I'm-Fixin'-To-Die Rag" by Country Joe McDonald
    3. "The Star-Spangled Banner" by Jimi Hendrix
    4. "Let's Go Get Stoned" by Joe Cocker

  37. "I was in the same office building as...Artie Kornfield and Michael Lang. I just walked into them and said, 'I hear you're doing like a concert, in the park, or up in Woodstock somewhere—and I'd like to be there.' I was picturing like a picnic in a field, with families and picnic blankets. I thought it sounded really nice...arts and crafts and so on. I just asked could I do it, and they said, 'Yeah, yeah, come.' " This account of how he/she was booked to perform at Woodstock was provided by:
    1. Joni Mitchell
    2. Melanie
    3. Tim Hardin
    4. Joan Baez

  38. Student radicals from the 1960s and conservatives of the 1990s are similar in that both:
    1. desired freedom from government restraints relative to certain issues
    2. opposed environmental regulations on industry because they slowed economic growth
    3. wanted government to redistribute income to create economic equity among Americans
    4. believed in an active government to solve the nation’s social problems

  39. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is located in:
    1. Memphis, Tennessee
    2. Cleveland, Ohio
    3. Berkeley, California
    4. New Orleans, Louisiana

  40. All of the following Woodstock performers became Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees except:
    1. The Who
    2. Creedence Clearwater Revival
    3. Jimi Hendrix
    4. Ten Years After



Choose one of the following. Your response should be 3-5 typed, double-spaced pages and include a list of sources used (minimum of three required).

  1. "In many cases during the Counterculture Era, young people were making history by accident." Discuss this statement, citing some specific events as "accidents."

  2. "Divisive military activity weakens the social life of a democratic society and precipitates moral and ethical decline." Assess the validity of this statement by referring to both the Civil War and America's involvement in Vietnam and their respective post-war periods.

  3. Analyze the extent to which any two of the following social movements significantly contributed to the 1960s and 1970s being a period of profound cultural change in America—anti-war; environment; gender roles; music; race relations.

Well, I came upon a child of God;
He was walking along the road,
And I asked him, where are you
    going? This he told me:
Said I'm going on down to Yasgur's
Going to join in a rock and roll band;
Got to get back to the land and set
    my soul free.

We are stardust, we are golden,
We are billion-year-old carbon;
And we've got to get ourselves
Back to the garden.
Well, then can I walk beside you?
I have come to lose the smog,
And I feel like I'm a cog in
    something turning.
And maybe it's the time of year,
Yes, and maybe it's the time of
And I don't know who I am but life
    is for learning.

We are stardust, we are golden,
We are billion-year-old carbon;
And we've got to get ourselves
Back to the garden.
By the time we got to Woodstock
We were half a million strong,
And everywhere was a song and a
And I dreamed I saw the bomber
    death planes
Riding shotgun in the sky,
Turning into butterflies above our

We are stardust, we are golden,
We are caught in the devil's bargain;
And we've got to get ourselves
Back to the garden.


"Every gun made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies...theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and not clothed." —Dwight D. Eisenhower

"All we are saying is give peace a chance." —John Lennon