Another year, another revival of an iconic ‘60s music festival!
But this isn't just any year: 2019 marks 50 years since 1969, the date of the original Woodstock. To celebrate, Bethel Woods Center for the Arts, Live Nations Concerts and INVNT are hosting a new event, the "Bethel Woods Music and Culture Festival," to take place at the the original site of the legendary music festival in Bethel, NY. Coming exactly half a century after the famed summer of 1969 event, this anniversary celebration will span three days (Aug 16–18).
Collecting some of the ‘60s most influential artists on one bill, Woodstock featured the likes of Joan Baez, Santana, Janis Joplin, the Grateful Dead and Jimi Hendrix. Its 1994 25th anniversary celebration in Saugerties, NY managed to do justice to the original, calling in Sheryl Crow, Aphex Twin, Metallica, Nine Inch Nails, Aerosmith and Bob Dylan as its headliners. In other words, though the lineup for this year's 50th anniversary remains fully TBA, one should expect great things, as long your idea of good things includes "prominent and emerging artists spanning multiple genres and decades" and TED-style talks from "leading futurists and retro-tech experts."
This anniversary fest takes place at the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts, located at the same historic 600-plus acre site in the Catskills that hosted the original event's 400,000-participant psychedelic reverie. There, festival-goers can also visit the Museum at Bethel Woods, which tells the story of the 1960s through immersive media, interactive engagements, and artifacts from the 1969 festival.
But here's the catch—this is not the official 50th anniversary celebration of Woodstock. In fact, the summer event is not sponsored by or affiliated whatsoever with Woodstock Ventures LC, the organizer of the 1969 Festival and its other reunion festivals. If you are looking for an anniversary celebration with the stamp of authenticity, Michael Lang, the co-creator of the 1969 music fest, has stated he’s still planning to launch his own “real” Woodstock 50th anniversary—so keep your eyes and ears peeled for an announcement in the coming months.