Road to Woodstock
March 29, 1969
Many people visit the town of Woodstock, NY to find the Yargur's farm because the oft told, but inaccurate, story about the Woodstock Music and Art Fair is that the town of Woodstock threw out Woodstock Venture's request to hold the Fair in the town.
Keep in mind that Michael Lang and Artie Kornfeld's original idea (one that Kornfeld has said was actually his wife's idea) was to create a recording studio in Woodstock. Many musicians lived in, near, or often visited the town. Though Bob Dylan was the most notable among those musicians, Bob's band, The Band, others included Janis Joplin, Richie Havens, Paul Butterfield, Van Morrison, John Sebastian, and even Jimi Hendrix.
Lang and Kornfeld had proposed the studio idea to John Roberts and Joel Rosenman in early February. Their company, Woodstock Ventures, formed on February 28, 1969 (legally minus Kornfeld who was under contract to Capital Records). Their idea was:
- a recording studio in Woodstock
- a music festival in nearby Saugerties (~ 10 miles away)
In a month, things happened quickly regarding the festival's site.
- March 29, 1969, Michael Lang had found a suitable site in Saugerties, NY right off the NY Thruway. On this date, John Roberts and Joel Rosenman met with a Mr Holmes, the lawyer for the site’s owner, Mr Shaler. The lawyer emphatically told Roberts and Rosenman that the site was not for rent for such a purpose.
- March 30, 1969, after the Saugerties refusal, Roberts and Rosenman spoke to Howard Mills about a piece of land in Wallkill, NY that Mills was going to develop. Mills agreed to rent the site for the festival.
You will notice that the town of Woodstock was not part of the festival's picture. It did not "refuse" or "kick out" Woodstock Ventures. And the owner of the proposed Saugerties site simply refused.
In other words. The...
Road to Woodstock
was actually the...
Road to Wallkill
which actually led to the...
Road to Bethel
- Related link >>> YouTube for full “Woodstock” instrumental
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