If you are like me, you will be surprised to learn that there was a Woodstock before there was "Woodstock." Decades before the massive music event now known to history as "Woodstock", there was a thriving artist's colony in the actual town of Woodstock, where ironically the festival was not held. Among artists and writers of all types, it was known as a retreat/workshop for folk musicians, including some very famous ones. The most well known is probably Bob Dylan. In 1964, he wrote material for his albums "Another Side of Bob Dylan" and "Bringing It All Back Home" in a studio above the "Espresso" coffee shop in Woodstock. The initial planning for what became the Woodstock mega-concert was a natural extension of the art and music festivals that had been held in Woodstock throughout the twentieth century. This book is derived from a panel symposium/retrospective held in 2008, where some of the people that planned the Woodstock event rehashed the history of the town, some of the artistic events that had already been held there and where they planned to go as they solidified the idea of a mega rock concert. It is not a history of the concert itself, very little is mentioned about what actually happened. If you are curious about the roots of Woodstock and how that region of the country had been a haven for artists for almost a century, then this is a book that you must read. Those artistic roots run very deep, far deeper than I had ever realized.
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Charles Ashbacher (CharlesAshbacher)
Charlie Ashbacher is a compulsive reader and writer about many subjects. His prime areas of expertise are in mathematics and computers where he has taught every course in the mathematics and computer … more
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"As Woodstock turns 40 . . . transcript of a 2008 panel discussion with Michael Lang and locals who were there." --Publishers Weekly
"Primarily a transcript of a 2008 panel discussion on the events leading up to Woodstock; a 50-page black-and-white photo essay at the end of the book refreshingly cuts back to the folk roots and the Arts and Crafts heritage of the Woodstock Music and Art Fair." --Library Journal
"The book is a fascinating read: there s an interesting story on every page, and it is a must-have for anyone interested in the Woodstock Festival, the history of Woodstock or the counterculture movement in the United States." --Catskill Mountain Region Guide