Cover Image: Woodstock


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Member Reviews

This book was arranged very well. I wish I had been at Woodstock! The illustrations and information were well written.

Thank you Net Galley!
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Woodstock by Ernesto Assante is both a recap of the festival itself and so much more. From setting up the period of history, to who played when and what the obstacles were, and through to where many of the people ended up well after Woodstock, this book tells in both words and pictures the story of the Woodstock consciousness, both its promise and its failures.

First off, for those mostly interested in pictures strictly of the festival and words pertaining only to the festival directly, you might be a little disappointed. There is plenty of that here but there is also contextualizing the event within the period and even the period within the larger history of the country. I think it will still be well worth your time but know ahead of time this isn't just a recap of the festival.

What appealed to me the most, aside from the pictures, was the way people of the festival, from entertainers to other important people, such as those making the necessary service and help announcements, were discussed. We were told what they did there but at the same time we were told where their careers went, or didn't. Many accounts of events with large casts tell the events then follow that up with maybe a chapter about "where they are (or went)" which for me seems a little disjointed. I liked being told, for instance, how Richie Havens' set went then immediately being told about his career and his positive messages. 

I recommend this to music fans, readers of pop culture and particularly 60s culture. This is both nostalgia for people my age and, I think, an interesting glimpse at the hopes of a generation for those younger.

Reviewed from a copy made available by the publisher via NetGalley.
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This is a good overall history of the Music festival.  I really enjoyed reading about many of the behind the scenes of what took place during the three days.  Some of the stories were new me.  The book is presented in a chronological order from the first idea to last note. There are also contemporary interviews with some of the people involved. I really enjoyed a lot of the photographs that accompanied the text.  The writing was good and the book was easy and fun to read.  Music fans will enjoy reading this account.  It is best read with an accompanying sound track.  Enjoy
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A stirring and nostalgic account of the melody, mayhem and magnificence surrounding what has to be one of the most seminal events of our time. The Woodstock era was a once in a lifetime, event triggered by passion and touched by spontaneity . Ernesto Assante captures both these important elements with the same visceral verve and passion that birthed the phenomenon at the outset.
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Woodstock. Wow, what a crazy, great, beautiful thing that must have been to experience! I admit, part of me always thinks about the bad parts too- shortage of bathrooms ( or port-a-johns, I suppose), lots of mud, lack of dry sleeping areas, etc- but still, the good outweighs the bad. This book gives an interesting history of the festival, including other famous festivals that paved the way, like the Monterey Pop Festival, and tons of pics, onstage, offstage, in the audience, and on the road to Woodstock. Makes me wish I could've been there all over again.
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Compelling look at a time gone by

Woodstock The 1969 Rock and Roll Revolution by Ernesto Assante brought me back to my teen years.  Everyone wanted to be there but distance kept me away until now.  The words and pictures do a great job of bringing that time alive for generations of people interested in that incredible time. All you need is  the music played then to complete the experience.
I received an advance reader copy via Netgalley.
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Woodstock 50 years, who would have thought that. As a young boy watching the news, all I remember hearing about was a group of young hippies showing up for what was supposed to be three days of singers. Then later more talk, but that was all. This book with the history at the beginning taking you through the movement and how everything got started, from the term “Beatnik”, from a book written in 1958 by Jack Kerouac. The author then moves you through the times of the sixties with different festivals, “Tripps” in 1966 in San Francisco, another one in 67 at the Golden Gate Park. Each one of these would have the Grateful Dead, Big Brother & the Holding Company, as some of the performers. They were only known to people from San Francisco and Bill Graham the local promoter handling the music. This would also be the time of “Summer Love”, then the first big rock festival in Monterey California that was for three days in June of 1967. Now the author takes you to how they came to Betel New York, and Max Yasgur’s dairy farm. How they started clearing the land, making all of the arraignments, for food, water, bathrooms, and other items. Of course all they did would not matter. Tickets they printed and sold they figured out they could not collect on them, they were thinking 200,000 people, but 400,000 above showed up. What was supposed to be three days went four days. The stage was not complete as people and performers arrived, so Richie Heavens would not go on until much later. The rains would come but people stayed and the acts still performed. The author takes you through each one. This is an excellent book and gives you a true story of the history of the time leading up to the event, and really the end of the sixties. The photographs that go along with the book are fantastic and you really get a feel of the area. Especially why the people of Bethel were so upset as people just left their cars in the streets and ended up walking the twenty miles to the farm. Overall a very good book.
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I believe the book achieves everything it set out to accomplish.
It is great that a bookcan convey so much of a sense of the ideas, planning and presenting of an event that was the largest ever music festival of it's kind. Due to the spirit of the young people and the organisers the event evolved and it is this sense of Woodstock being the sensient enbodiment of thousands of young people it was unique.
As someone born half a generation too late it was fascinating read. The post war generation were forged in opposition to America's involvement in the Vietnam War; they expressed their desires in protest, become known as hippies but were blessed by not just a peace movement but a musical consciousness that reflacted these ideals and explored ideas through a diverse essemble of music and performers. Those who struggle to Bethel to perform at Woodstoch 1969 were touched by the crowds and somehow through recording made and a later film documentary were immortalised. Many of the acts had long careers and most speak passionately of this time.
This is a wonderful hisorical look back not just with nostalgia but with critical insight to ask how the phenomenon that was Woodstock grown and became seared in cultural and musical folklore.
I am amazed by the range of artists that performed amid a chaotic running order and torrential rain. It takes a reflective account to detail this and pose questions about what potentially could have been a disaster. Indeed the National Guard were called out but not ultimately deployed on site.
It is the goodwill of the people who gathered that this book ultimately commends for the success and its cult status. Probably millions claims to have been there, but a crowd in excess of 500,000 were gathered in this one place, while all the access roads leading to the venue were reduced to parking lots.
I love the history. It was the embodiment of a movement. Peace, Love and Music. The book is crammed full of pictures and the crowd look pleased to be there despite the lack of food, shelter and sleep. It proclaims the posiveness of humanity working towards a mutual goal. The faces are young, black and white, male and female, supportive of each other. America has become known as an obese national. There is no evidence of it here in these photographs. There are efforts to publish views on the environment and eating meat in some posters among the crowd.
It seems we have lost touch with some of these values. Peace, Love and Music wasn't some fluffy slogan at Woodstock; it demanded a hard journey to and from the site, limited water, food and space. A reliance on others and a collective response as you were simply one in a crowd of hundreds of thousands. It took effort, stamina and thinking of others before you own needs.
Firty years on why has it gone so wrong? Play Joni Mitchell.
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Woodstock: The 1969 Rock & Roll Revolution.
This book really sets the scene for me. It doesn't glorify the festival like so many nostalgic books do. It point blank says, it rained and everything was covered in mud, there was hardly any food left by the end of the first day, bathrooms were non-existent, and the campgrounds were not near as boujee as they are today.
But that's not to say it didn't hit on major events. Musicians from all over the world came to Bethel, New York, for an unknown music festival. Musicians who had already created a name for themselves in rock history and some who became rock legends there on the Woodstock Stage. Listening to the pitfalls of the festival just made me appreciate it even more. Founder, Michael Lang, and his crew cared for the people at the festival and wanted them to have the best experience of their life, regardless of the weather and other extenuating circumstances. They wanted this festival to be everything these kids hoped for and then some more. They spoke of peace, music, love, art, and most importantly camaraderie. Without the help and understanding of those attending the festival, Woodstock would not have been near as historical as it is now. 
This coffee table book delves into the most historic music festival. It highlights the best and worst parts of the festival and leaves you wishing you were there, but also incredibly thankful of how far we've come in the music scene. I'm incredibly grateful to have been given an earc of this book via NetGalley and Quarto Publishing Group!
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I give this book four stars mainly for its photographic chronology.. However the written content is a bit weak. The book  seems to be a rehashing of the writings about Woodstock already out there.  I did not discover any new insight or factual information that wasn't already known. to me. No surprise here. However it makes  a great coffee table book. The pictures are wonderful to look at.
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This is an absolutely fascinating and informative book. I loved it. The photographs especially are amazing and a real insight into such an iconic moment. It's so well researched and full of amazing interviews with all the key players. Really enjoyed it and would highly recommend to any music or history fan.
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Is it really possible that it's been almost 50 years since Woodstock?!  Boy does that make me feel old!  No, I wasn't there - but some of my contemporaries were.  This book is very well researched and written.  The interviews are insightful and there is fascinating information on how the whole concert was conceived and put together.  It's interesting to hear about the artists  who were featured there - some already famous, others just beginning.  

I really enjoyed the pictures that showed the immense crowds.  It's hard to imagine so many people gathered in one place at that time.  Woodstock definitely earned its place in history and this book is a very good accounting of it.
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Being of the age to remember the 60s and 70s, this book brought back memories of the era.
Loved reading the history and behind the scene info. Woodstock exemplified the era and the music still stands up to today!  Great photos too.
Hard to believe it will be 50 years!
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I received a DIGITAL Advance Reader Copy of this book from #NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  
From the publisher, as I do not regurgitate the contents or story of books in reviews, I let them do it.

Woodstock: The 1969 Rock and Roll Revolution celebrates the fascinating story of how the music event came to be and the people that made it part of history.

How can you explain the Woodstock Festival fifty years after the event to those who were not fortunate enough to take part? The concert that changed the history of rock music and an entire generation cannot be reduced to the photos. Half a million young people come to Bethel, NY from every corner of the world to experience three days of music together. 

This event, now legendary, resounds with the psychedelic notes of Santana and the sublime guitar of Pete Townshend of The Who, the rich voices of Joan Baez and Janis Joplin, and the many other artists who appeared one after another on the stage. Yet, it was perhaps the guitar of Jimi Hendrix as he played his version of the American national anthem, “The Star-Spangled Banner,” as Woodstock screamed its impetuous, revolutionary protest against the war in Vietnam, becoming the symbol of an epochal dissent.

In Woodstock, journalist and music critic Ernesto Assante presents those unforgettable days through exclusive interviews and photos he has recorded throughout his entire career. Michael Lang, Carlos Santana, Joe Cocker, Grace Slick, Arlo Guthrie, Joan Baez, Bob Weir, Roger Daltrey, Graham Nash, will all take us to Bethel to re-live and give thanks to the extraordinary figures that made Woodstock a legend that still echoes today.
I wasn’t at Woodstock but I have been to Bethel/Woodstock: it’s decidedly in the crunchy, granola part of upper New York state. It is a landmark event in the history of the 1960s and counter-culture and music. 
The book is expertly researched and written – the librarian in my liked that it wasn’t just fluff.  The interviews were well-conducted and the stories shared were eyebrow-raising at times. I know someone who was at Woodstock and her stories are not far off from the real thing presented in the book: at least in this book I didn’t have to picture her naked and cavorting in the mud in my mind as I read it…. oh, dear, now I am picturing it ☹ 
Any (older) baby boomer would appreciate this book as a Christmas present, as would a music fan: its out just in time for Christmas!
🎵 🎵 🎵 🎵
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A beautifully put together and well researched read. This book was a pleasure to read and the photographs and layout are well thought out. 

Thank you to Netgalley for my copy.
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A well researched, interesting and richly illustrated book.
I loved the way the book was written and how the illustrations match the text.
Highly recommended!
Many thanks to Quarto Publishing and Netgalley for this ARC
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