After the multiple hurdles that got in the way of Woodstock 50, the music festival is officially canceled less than a month before its date.
The co-founder of the historic music festival, Michael Lang, canceled the three-day fest after a whole fiasco with having to move the event to Maryland. Previously, Lang and other organizers of Woodstock 50 attempted to hold the concert in Watkins Glen, New York, and Vernon, New York.
In a statement published in Rolling Stone, Lang said he is now backing up the efforts of Woodstock’s 50th-anniversary tribute that will happen in Bethel, New York close to the 1969 fests’ original site.
“We are saddened that a series of unforeseen setbacks have made it impossible to put on the festival we imagined with the great line-up we had booked and the social engagement we were anticipating,” Lang said. “When we lost the Glen and then Vernon Downs we looked for a way to do some good rather than just cancel. We formed a collaboration with [voting encouragement organization] HeadCount to do a smaller event at [Columbia, Maryland’s] Merriweather Pavilion to raise funds for them to get out the vote and for certain NGOs involved in fighting climate change.”
Lang revealed that all of the festival’s booked talents including Jay-Z, Imagine Dragons, and Halsey were released from their contracts hoping they would play for free in Maryland. But bands reportedly dropped out.
“I would like to encourage artists and agents, who all have been fully paid, to donate 10% of their fees to HeadCount or causes of their choice in the spirit of peace,” Lang continued. “Woodstock remains committed to social change and will continue to be active in support of HeadCount’s critical mission to get out the vote before the next election. We thank the artists, fans and partners who stood by us even in the face of adversity. My thoughts turn to Bethel and its celebration of our 50th Anniversary to reinforce the values of compassion, human dignity, and the beauty of our differences embraced by Woodstock.”
Ben is is a senior journalist and sport columnist for Best in Australia. He previously worked for the BC and other radio stations.