40 Years After Woodstock

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Woodstock turns 40 this year. We'll talk to the festival's founder and promoter Michael Lang and Woodstock's official photographer Henry Diltz. Michael is also one of the co-authors of the book Woodstock Experience.

Event: Michael Lang and Henry Diltz will host a celebration of Woodstock on August 13th at 7pm in the Morrison Hotel Gallery.
More information here.


Henry Diltz and Michael Lang

Comments [16]

PJ from PA

A note to Stuart the footage you saw of the Greatful Dead could have been from Woodstock. That was the problem back then (and even now) if youre shooting a film or video from far away of a band. The music/sound will take time to travel to your camera and there will be a delay before the audio actually hits the microphone on the camera where as the lens of the camera will show it in real time. (example you're a 200 yards away from the stage but you zoom in to where you're right on top of the stage that will cause an audio delay because the micrphone on your camera doesn't zoom with the camera lens)Thus they had a lot of footage they could not use because the audio didn't sync up when they were filming. Now with the digital age they were able to go back and match some of the audio with the video. That is why when they digitized the movie they were able to go back and sync the audio to some of the performances. If you have the original film there was not as many performances on the film as there is with the new digitzed version. If you have the audio CD, MP3 of the concert there were many more performances than what the film captured. They were to far back so they had the delay problem. Also I'm sure they had there share of technical problems with filming along with the distance issue. Remember tey only expected 50000 and ended up with 500000 which probably caused unforeseen challenges for the film crew. It was a well put together documentary. I was only 5 when Woodstock happened.

Aug. 20 2012 01:30 AM
Tom Degan from Goshen, NY

The Woodstock Festival did not take place in Woodstock, New York but in the town of Bethel which is sixty-seven miles due west. The second day of that mythic, three-day concert coincided with my eleventh birthday (I am going to be fifty-one on Sunday. Yikes! Where did the time go?). I remember quite clearly my friend Tom Finkle and I riding our bikes up to the bridge on South Street that overlooks Route 17 - a four lane highway which snakes its way into Sullivan County where the great event took place. It looked like a long and narrow parking lot. The New York State Thruway had been shut down. To the best of my knowledge, that had never happened before and has not happened since.

To say that it was an exciting time to be alive almost sounds redundant. Less than four weeks earlier, two human beings had walked on the surface of the moon, a technological feat that will probably out shine every other event of the twentieth century in the history books that will be written a thousand years from now. As future decades unwind, it is a certainty that the photographic image of half a million kids, partying and dancing in the mud, will not continue to sustain the cultural significance that it does for us today. The years will pass by, the people who were lucky enough to be there will one day be no more, and the Woodstock Festival will be erased from living memory; a mere footnote to a very crowded century. But what a freaking party, baby!

"If I can't dance, I don't want to be part of your revolution."

Emma Goldman 1869-1940

Dance with me, Emma!

Tom Degan 1958-

Aug. 15 2009 11:13 AM

It was a major event in history. Period.
If you love music, this has to be something to be remembered.

Aug. 15 2009 07:57 AM
Mark Winters from Washington Heights

Dear Michael Lang,
Nice to hear you today.
I signed up as an employee with the festival at its office to sell tix for the food concessions. I agreed to work for $2.45 per hour, as I recall. Got a hitch up Route 17 with a bunch of Hasidic guys who were fascinated but didn't dare attend. I reported for work in good faith and really busted my ass until the rains came, we ran out of food and things came apart.
Dear Michael, I worked for 14 hours, to date, uncompensated. As you are doing well on the memories of the event I figure $2.45 per hour x 14 hours = $34.30 x 5% per annum x 40 years might be reasonable. I had a great time but never got a W-2. Could really use it now.

Aug. 13 2009 08:05 PM
RFWoodstock from Woodstock

WOODSTOCK LIVES ONLINE!!!! We're a small group of folks based at Utopia Studios in Woodstock who are keeping the spirit of Woodstock alive.

Listen to RADIO WOODSTOCK 69 which features only music from the original Woodstock era (1967-1971). Win a Woodstock special limited edition white Stratocaster guitar (like the one Jimi Hendrix played at Woodstock) and Collector's Edition Woodstock DVD. Go to for details and to join our Woodstock online community.

Peace, love, music,

Aug. 13 2009 05:22 PM
realitysurfer from san francisco

Please take a moment to check out my new LSD Documentary film.

Features the CIA LSD Brothel in San Francisco (MK ULTRA), Groucho Marx's LSD Trip....Doc Ellis pitches his no-hitter while high.

Tim Leary's Miricle of Good friday Experiment is explored with one of the original PREACHERS who took part.

LSD and the Protest Movement, JFK & LSD plus more.

All posted for free at this youtube link..please share this knowledge.

Aug. 13 2009 03:57 PM
Evan from New York, NY

Sanrda, I'm a Gen X'er as well and don't mind the music. It's all the reminiscences about the concert and the self-congratulation for which the Boomers are legendary that drives me crazy.

Aug. 13 2009 01:54 PM
Sandra from Astoria, Queens

I'm a Gen X'er and I happen to love the Woodstock nostalgia! If you love rock music, you can't help it.

Aug. 13 2009 01:14 PM
Tim Young from New York City

I just bought the book the other day and it is so worthwhile. Lang is an inspiration on how to get things done through a billion obstacles.

Too bad there is that 'bunch' that are sick of the Woodstock idea and concert. I did not attend but those performances from the film and recordings are timeless and important. Forty years ago or two hundred and forty years ago the moment will be remembered.

Aug. 13 2009 01:09 PM

there was a documentary on Channel 21 last night - "Woodstock Remembered". Mr Diltz was on the program. Not sure who put this together, but there was a clip of the Dead performing 2 songs. However, this performance was not from Woodstock, and the audio was not synched to the video. anyone care to comment?

Aug. 13 2009 12:55 PM
Neal from Manhattan

Sad music news today as the media reports Les Paul has passed.

Aug. 13 2009 12:47 PM
Evan from New York, NY

Please, for the love of G-d, stop the Woodstock nostalgia. After 40 years, hasn't the topic been beaten to death? For all the peace and love nonsense, it was a FOR-PROFIT concert, whose main legacy is the fact that bills of multiple artists were replaced by one-act stadium shows. For those of who came of age after it, it's been this self-absorbed baby boomer elephant in the room.

Aug. 13 2009 12:37 PM
Steven Mark from Manhattan UES

Please mention that one can visit the site, attend a concert and enjoy a museum of the sixties. About an hour and a quarter from NYC.

Incredible experience.

Aug. 13 2009 12:37 PM
David Hume from Staten Island, NY

Is it true "The Who" is the only band that got paid?


Aug. 13 2009 12:35 PM
Tony from San Jose, CA

I can't wait till the pot smokers leave us alone

Aug. 13 2009 12:35 PM
Sonny from Crown Heights

There's a great clip online of Arlo Guthrie recounting his Woodstock memories from the recent River to River concert at Castle Clinton:

Aug. 13 2009 10:52 AM

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