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Exclusive Interview for the School ES2A

Michael Lang. The man behind the most important Music Festival in the History, Woodstock 1969

José Mujica

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In Spanish


The sequence

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Trying to arrive and all the ways couldn't

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Max Yasgur, the farm owner, behind an Altec Lansing Horn over the stage. Altec and JBL were there together to do the miracle sound.

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The Woodstock Nation, as it was called, in all its expression, you still can feel the magic

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Closing the History with Jimi Hendrix performance gave the perfect end.

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The Marker "This is the original site of the Woodstock Music and Arts Fear Held on Aug. 15,16,17 1969 This market erected by the owners Louis Nicky and June Celish 1984"

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ES2A: After 46 years what does Michael Lang feel about Woodstock?

ML: Amazed at it’s staying power. Because of it’s core values it remains relevant all these years later.

When Artie Kornfeld, John Roberts, Joel Rosenman and I began this journey we had no thoughts of making history. We wanted Woodstock to be big, and fun and for our generation. We wanted it to be about love and 3 days of Peace and Music.

ES2A: One idea is enough? What else a young man needs?

ML:Ideas come from many sources. The idea for Woodstock was a product of it’s time, And for me, an answer to the question “what would we be like if we were in charge and able to live out our values in nature surrounded by our peers and a whole lot of great music.

ES2A: ¿Do you believe Woodstock changed the things? If so, What changed?

ML:I think Woodstock proved to the World that it was possible for people to live peacefully. It gave credence to the to the positions we as a young generation took on personal freedoms, ending a war we felt unjust, respect for the planet, the fight for civil rights, woman’s rights, and human rights in general. The impact on society continues to this day.

ES2A: Which was the Band more difficult to contact and deal with? ¿Why?

ML: The Who were the most difficult to book and to deal with at the festival. They were at the end of a tour and really wanted to go home. They were not a part of the “Hippie” thing and Pete Townsand had to be talked into taking the date. Once there, Pete was   miserable and nasty to everyone. However afterwards they recognized Woodstock as the most important show of their career.

ES2A: When did you think in the sound and who said “hey, I know a guy that can help us with the sound”?

ML: When it came to sound the field was limited. There were few people who had any   experience with large outdoor events and it came down to Bill Hanley and Owsley Stanley. Owsley was the Grateful Dead’s sound man and Bill had done sound for the Newport festivals, and other outdoor events. Owsley was also the biggest manufacturer of LSD in America so we went with Bill.
This was the biggest outdoor event ever planned so Bill had to build a system from scratch.


ES2A:The Sound was designed to 50K people and you got near 500K. ¿Did it really was enough to the far seat of the ground? Did it matter?

ML: Actually we built for an estimated 200,000 and the system stood up remarkably well when a half million showed up. People in the bowl could hear well and those over the hills picked up the vibe.

ES2A: Woodstoock didn’t give you profit, isn’t it? How much time did it take to all of you understand the history would give the profit or at least the thanks forever?

ML: We knew we were in financial trouble early on, but for me the miracle we were experiencing was more than enough reward. It took a year or so to realize the impact we had around the world and many more years to understand it’s historical significance. It also took many years for my partners to recoup their investment.

ES2A: Recently we were in shock at the School when 7 of each 10 of our pupils didn’t know the song Smoke on The water and what Woodstock 69 was.  Do you think is the same in the world?

ML:You know in most places Woodstock is still very well known as it is referenced very often. There are echo’s of those days in our world today - from Global Warming and organic farming, to Human Rights issues to America having a black president.

To quote Carlos Santana, “At Woodstock I saw a collective adventure that still holds true today. When the Berlin Wall came down, Woodstock was there. When Mandela was liberated, Woodstock was there. Woodstock is still every day”.

ES2A: How do you believe we can change this culture fact? We must?

ML: I think change comes when people commit themselves and get involved. There are so many problems that face our world today and we must come together to find solutions if we are to survive and ultimately thrive.

ES2A: Does Woodstock.com have to do with this fact? Which was the idea and how is going?

ML: Woodstock.com is a work in progress and will hopefully evolve into a site that effectively supports efforts of positive global change.

ES2A: What music likes the man who made Woodstock? What you hear today and which amplifier and loudspeakers use?

ML: I use JBL equipment and still have some old tube amps. My taste in music is pretty eclectic, from Jazz to Hip Hop and Rock and a bit of EDM, but I’m still partial to classic rock. I think the 60’s and 70’s were an amazingly creative time for music.

ES2A: One Anecdote? Advise for the new generations?

ML: My best advice is to follow your dreams and embrace the things that inspire you.

When we lost our site in Wallkill (which took 4 months to find) a month before Woodstock was scheduled to happen (the town of Wallkill pulled our permit) we went public in the press and on radio asking for anyone with a large enough site to get in touch. We never lost faith in our dream and the next day we found Yasgurs Farm in Bethel and the rest is history.

Get your little piece of my heart. Woodstock.com is a world where you can find all about Woodstock, best videos, music and books, but we wanted to show a little more. Those things that maybe you don't think  there are. .

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Take note. A notebook you will enjoy writing your own

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A must read. His views, his details. The never told story

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Let's go to the next Festival

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You can't say they didn't think in everything and everybody

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No more cold and be cool in the concert

And now to give more thanks to Michael, go to visit him: Woodstock.com




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