Fast History: The End of Woodstock, 1969

Forty years ago this morning, Jimi Hendrix brought down the house to close the Woodstock Music and Art Fair in Bethel, New York. Decades later, amid a new era of change, things look suspiciously similar: America is embroiled in unpopular foreign wars, domestic economic worries, and talk about going to the moon. Noticeably absent from the 1969 reprise: another Woodstock to inject some peace and love into our current situation. Rumors surfaced that Woodstock creator Michael Lang might throw a 40th anniversary show on the original grounds in upstate New York, but economic woes crushed that dream. A commemorative concert may still materialize in Brooklyn’s Prospect Park later this year, but something about hipsters lamenting their trust fund losses rather than hippies lamenting their innocence lost makes us want to tune out.

August 18
The End of Woodstock Music and Art Fair, 1969
Bethel, NY

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