We've documented the boondoggle Michael Lang's proposed festival marking the anniversary of his 1969 event has become. Just when it seems it can't get any more ridiculous, it does. Lang evidently released all of the previously announced artists from any obligation to appear after John Fogerty and The Dead and Company dropped out. (Jay-Z did too, but him being out of the lineup would probably increase interest). Lang probably had no legal basis for requiring performances since the contracts specified Watkins Glen as the site and were made between the bands and the anniversary festival's early financial backers. The backers lost confidence in Lang and backed out, and Watkins Glen denied him permits, as did another potential site. He finally landed a venue, Merryweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, Maryland, and a promoting partner willing to run the event "if the bands show up". His latest ploy is rebranding it as a benefit concert to raise money to fight climate change and encourage voter turnout in the next election. Whether enough people will pay to attend a festival that can't guarantee who is going to perform to make it viable is such an obvious problem that there's even talk they could end up giving tickets away to fill the venue that holds 32,000.
The July 2, 1969 death of Brian Jones just a few weeks after he got kicked out of the Rolling Stones was officially attributed to "misadventure". The circumstances could well have contributed to that conclusion being reached.
The guitarist was hosting what has been described as a raucous party at his place. Guests were said to have been indulging in copious quantities of alcohol and reportedly enjoying cakes with hashish baked into them.At about 9pm, the 27 year-old host's body ended-up at the bottom of the swimming pool many guests at the event had frollicked in earlier that night.
The cause of death has been questioned ever since the results of the investigation into it got announced. Many contend it wasn't an accident.
Alternate reasons for his death will be the subject of a Netflix documentary based on a book about the tragedy written by Terry Rawlings, who has uncovered a number of inconsistencies in accounts provided by witnesses at the party, including Jones' manager, who accounts claim denied he'd even been there that night for a number of years.
Whether the doc actually gets to the bottom of why Jones ended-up at the bottom of the pool remains to be seen, but it should be interesting viewing.
The multiple failures to secure a location and many other missteps along the way have made it look as though it was a longshot that Woodstock 50, the 3 day anniversary event Michael Lang put together, would take place at all. Early on, Lang lost his financing and then tried to sue to get reimbursed on some of the money fronted by the backer and failed. He then found another backer but lost his venue when Watkins Glen officials lost confidence in the plans Lang submitted. He then attempted to relocate the event to Vernon Downs, a harness racetrack between Utica and Syracuse, a move that would have reduced it's attendance potential from close to 100,000 to less than 65,000. Officials in that town rejected three applications over security, traffic, and health concerns. Yesterday, just a few weeks from the event's August 16 opening day, Woodstock 50 apparently found a site willing to host it. Merryweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, Maryland has reportedly signed on to host it. If it takes place there, capacity will get cut by another 50%. The amphitheater seats around 20,000, but could accommodate an additional 10,000. Tickets will apparently be priced at $129 and $595. Whether the announced lineup of Acts remains intact remains to be seen. Evidently, the acts were under contract to the firm that originally financed the event and the terms specified Watkins Glen as the location. If that's the case, some could be able to leagally opt out of appearing and keep the money advanced them.
The irrepressible Ronnie Wood is working on a new solo album. It's been almost a decade since the former Faces and current Rolling Stones member put out an an album on his own. This one will coincide with a documentary film about Woody.
Officials in Vernon, New York dashed Michael Lang's likely last chance for finding a venue willing to host his ill-fated Woodstock anniversary concert by rejecting his third appeal to stage it at Vernon Downs, a harness race track between Utica and Syracuse. That probably means the 50th anniversary of the iconic musical and cultural will pass without a big event to mark the occasion. But the US Postal Service will issue a small something to commemorate the 1969 event with the release of a Woodstock Forever Stamp on August 8th.
The four concerts Roger Waters and his band played at the Ziggo Dome in Amsterdam in June, 2018 were filmed. Highlights will be featured in a film titled Roger Waters Us + Them that gets special screenings in theaters October 2 & 6 this fall. Sean Evans, who worked with Waters on the 2014 film The Wall was on board for this project as well. Although no release info has been issued as yet, we would expect a DVD, BLU-ray release
Eric Clapton reportedly cut short a trip to Ku?adas? on the Turkish coast yesterday to return to London after learning his dog had died. EC, who risked his life to save several of his guitars as his London home burned in 1996, felt compelled enough to cancel plans he had arranged to visit a number of historic sites along the Turkish coast to summon a private plane so he could return immediately to London. As dog lovers, we'd do the same if we had the means. Condolences to Eric on the loss of his furry companion.
In the we kid you not department, Mattel has unveiled a Ziggy Stardust outfitted Barbie Doll to coincide with the anniversary of the manned mission to Mars and the recording and release of Space Oddity, the David Bowie song the lunar landing mission in 1969 inspired.
Graham Nash is putting 19 of his guitars into a Heritage Auctions sale, including the Martin-D45 acoustic guitar he played on stage with CSN&Y at Woodstock. Other instruments of note from Graham's collection that are going up for bids at the July 21-22 sale inlude a Gibson SG Duane Allman played in the 1960's, a 1963 Gibson J-180 once owned by Don Everly and a pair of guitars that both Johnny Cash and Stephen Stills both once owned.
TMZ is reporting that Eddie Money developed a case of pneumonia following a heart valve procedure that took place a bit over a month ago and has cancelled plans to tour this year. We extend our hopes for a full recovery to the Money Man.
Ace Frehley had such a good time recording his 2016 covers album that he's doing another. Origins Vol. 2 drops in October and will include a version of Huumble Pie's 30 Days In The Hole sung by Robin Zander of Cheap Trick. Lita Ford joins Ace for Jumpin' Jack Flash. The album will also include songs from Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix, Cream, Paul Revere and the Raider and The Animals catalogs.
Pete Townshend's guitar tech for four decades passed away on Thursday (7/4). The Who web site posted, "It is with great sadness,” read the statement, “that we announce that Alan Rogan, Pete Townshend’s guitar technician and close friend for more than 40 years has passed away. Alan was an essential and hugely respected member of the Who crew for many years and will be sorely missed.”? Our condolences to Pete and the family and friends of Alan.
When in the land of ice and snow... Robert Plant's latest group broke out a portion of Immigrant Song while performing in Iceland recently. It was the first time Plant had sung it in concert in 23 years.