September 27, 2023

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Michael Lang, co-creator of 1969 Woodstock audio competition, dies aged 77 | Woodstock

Michael Lang, a co-creator and promoter of the 1969 Woodstock tunes festival, has died.

Michael Pagnotta, a spokesperson for Lang’s relatives, claimed the 77-12 months-outdated had non-Hodgkin lymphoma and died on Saturday at the Memorial Sloan Kettering Most cancers Middle in New York.

“He was certainly an historic figure, and also a great person,” Pagnotta explained. “Both of all those matters go hand in hand.”

With associates Artie Kornfeld, John Roberts and Joel Rosenman, Lang put with each other the festival billed as “three times of peace and music” in the summer season of 1969, as the Vietnam war raged and led disaffected youthful Americans to convert absent from classic mores and embraced a way of living that celebrated flexibility of expression.

All over 400,000 men and women descended on the hamlet of Bethel, about 50 miles north-west of New York Town, enduring miles-extended targeted traffic jams, torrential rain, food shortages and confused sanitary facilities.

Much more than 30 acts done on the major stage at the base of a hill on land owned by farmer Max Yasgur, concertgoers taken care of to well-known performances from artists which include Jimi Hendrix, Carlos Santana, the Who and Jefferson Plane.

Lang, sporting a head of bushy brown hair, is witnessed during Michael Wadleigh’s 1970 documentary that chronicled the competition.

Jimi Hendrix, in a scene from Woodstock, a documentary account of the festival. Photograph: Warner Bros/Kobal/Rex/Shutterstock

“From the commencing, I thought that if we did our task correct and from the coronary heart, prepared the floor and established the suitable tone, folks would reveal their greater selves and produce a thing wonderful,” Lang wrote in a memoir, The Highway to Woodstock.

Lang and other individuals sought to mount a 50th anniversary concert in 2019 but the endeavor was scrapped owing to monetary problems and trouble securing a location.

In an interview with the AP at the time, Lang referred to as the experience “a seriously bizarre trip” and reported he hoped to hold the live performance in the foreseeable future.

Though Woodstock is viewed as generating the template for substantial-scale audio festivals, it wasn’t the to start with in the US. Two years previously, the Monterey Pop festival drew about 200,000 people today to California. In 1968 the Miami Pop Pageant adopted, which Lang also structured.

But Woodstock even so retains an indelible position in heritage.

“A good deal of them are modeled right after Woodstock, Bonnaroo and Coachella in unique,” Lang stated in 2009. “There was a ritual that was made that keeps receiving replicated.”