July 16, 2009

40 Years after Max Yasgur's Dairy Farm

In celebration of the 40th anniversary of the Woodstock festival an abundance of events and a flood of products are expected. First there is the expanded and remastered Michael Wadleigh documentary Woodstock: 3 days of Peace and Music, now out on Blu-ray, which includes an interview with Martin Scorsese. Rhino is releasing a six-CD box set, Woodstock 40 Years On: Back to Yasgur's Farm, with previously unreleased recordings. On August 14th the History channel is premiering a rockumentary, Woodstock: Now & Then, and there is even an upcoming comedy film from Ang Lee Taking Woodstock. Beyond the media, several books are also expected. Festival producer Michael Lang has two books out. One's a memoir, The Road to Woodstock (Ecco, 2009), and the other is a deluxe limited edition put out by Genesis Publications entitled the Woodstock Experience. Mike Evans and Paul Kingsbury's Woodstock: Three Days That Rocked the World (Sterling, 2009) also tells the tale of what went on from August 15-18th, 1969. Some of it is summarized as "three days of mud and electric shocks." Mickey is quoted as saying "It was the worst we ever played" and Bobby just remembers the "great blue spark about the size of a baseball" that lifted him off his feet. Even amidst all the myth making the zeitgeist can be cruel.

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