Woodstock

Tom Dougherty, CEO – Stealing Share

7 May 2019

Please leave Woodstock alone

I was a hippie in my youth. Me, with my puffed coiffure accompanied by bell bottoms and a leather vest. Saddled with a tattered copy of Carlos Castaneda’s The Teachings of Don Juan: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge and a joint. I was the picture of counter-culture. Thing is, in 1969 I was still in my mid-teens. And as such, I missed attending the zenith of the era, Woodstock.

In 1969, Woodstock became the epicenter for the free-love movement. But what makes it rightfully special is that its magnitude was unplanned. Granted, a great festival was in the making, what with Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young making its first live appearance. Richie Havens belting out “Motherless Child”, and Arlo Guthrie, Joe Cocker, The Who, Jimi Hendrix and Jefferson Airplane, among others, all performing.

WoodstockBut more than that, it was a rebellion against the Nixon regime and a stance against the seemingly pointless Vietnam war. For me, even though I wasn’t in attendance, my spirit was. The collective energy was palpable. And for a moment in time, Max Yasgur’s farm in upper state NY was the movement’s home for nearly 500,000 strong and represented a bastion of all of our worthy convictions. 

 

The simple truth is that Woodstock exists in its own time and place. The factors into its legend stem from the political and social environment of that time. Not today’s.”

Woodstock 50 could never be what Woodstock was

Woodstock 50 (and all the past incarnations, for that matter) is masturbatory and squeezes the importance out of a divine moment in time. I can’t say I wasn’t pleased to read that its Co-Founder Says Investors “Illegally Swept” $17 Million and is encouraging artists to drop out. Good, I say. There should never be another Woodstock. Let today’s counter-culture etch out their own place in time. The simple truth is that Woodstock exists in its own time and place. The factors into its legend stem from the political and social environment of that time. Not today’s.

Just leave Woodstock alone.

While she was not in attendance, Joni Mitchell penned the song “Woodstock” (and later recorded by David Crosby and his co-horts). Its essence summarizes what my words cannot rightfully describe.

I came upon a child of God

He was walking along the road

And I asked him, where are you going

And this he told me

I’m going on down to Yasgur’s farm

I’m going to join in a rock ‘n’ roll band

I’m going to camp out on the land

I’m going to try an’ get my soul free

We are stardust

We are golden

And we’ve got to get ourselves

Back to the garden

Then can I walk beside you

I have come here to lose the smog

And I feel to be a cog in something turning

Well maybe it is just the time of year

Or maybe it’s the time of man

I don’t know who l am

But you know life is for learning

We are stardust

We are golden

And we’ve got to get ourselves

Back to the garden

By the time we got to Woodstock

We were…

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