Woodstock Festival to Return for 50th Anniversary, Says Co-Creator

Woodstock co-creator Michael Lang sure doesn't look old enough to have helped facilitate the most iconic three days in music history, and technically, he almost isn't.

But his age didn't stop him in 1969, and it's not stopping him in 2019.

Now, decades after he and some friends dreamed up the idea of "three days of peace and music," he tells Q104.3 New York's Jim Kerr and Shelli Sonstein that he is indeed bringing the festival back this summer, from Friday, August 16, through Sunday, August 18, for its 50-year anniversary! 

Lang says it was important to him to preserve some of what made the first Woodstock so special. Woodstock 50 will be held in upstate New York (in Watkins Glen, a couple hours from the original Woodstock site), and it will be a three-day affair aimed at creating a sense of togetherness among the thousands of festival-goers. 

"It's basically people will come and camp for the weekend," Lang said. "That's part of the experience — coming together and really becoming a community that lives together for three days."

While he can't yet reveal the lineup, Lang confirms that "It's going to be amazing! We're curating it very carefully."

"We want to have representation of the original acts that were at Woodstock, those that are still performing," he continues. "It's not an Oldchella kind of thing. This is a very contemporary festival for young people, but there will be some very interesting performances with tributes to some of the original acts. ... Other than that it's going to be very eclectic musically."

The multi-generational affair will have something for everyone, Lang explains. As someone who has been involved in counter-culture since the '60s, this latest version of Woodstock is aimed at fostering the ideas behind the '69 movement in a new generation of people.

"These days we seem to be living through the same lessons that we thought we learned [in the '60s]," Lang says. "... It just seems like we really need a reminder." 

Woodstock 50 will offer plenty of opportunities for people to get involved with important causes and nonprofits to address today's leading social and environmental movements, Lang says. 

The new festival site is much bigger than the original site, allowing ample space for revelers to take part in a variety of activities beyond the music. The grounds will also contain spaces for tents, RVs, vans and "glamping options." 

It will feature three main stages and more than 60 artists, spanning rock, hip hop, pop and country. 

Lang says Woodstock 50 will begin announcing artists for the anniversary festival in the next few weeks.

Photo: Getty Images

Woodstock 50 Is Coming This Summer
Woodstock Festival to Return for 50th Anniversary, Says Co-Creator

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