Woodstock '69: One big fan recalls the landmark event

One of the books published to mark the 50th anniversary of rock's most famous festival comes from a unique perspective. Woodstock: Back to Yasgur's Farmwas written by a fan who was there.

Mike Greenblatt, who later became a journalist and publicist, lived in northern New Jersey in August 1969 where he "kept hearing the commercials on FM radio. Every single band that we loved, in one place, at one time. We couldn't not go -- so we went to a local head shop and bought our three-days passes for $17.50 and off we went."

Mike Greenblatt talked about what makes his Woodstock book special:

"Not only did 32 interviews with a lot of top bands at the festival as well as the guy that did the sound, the guy that did the lights, the people that put the festival together. But I was there. How many of these others did the brown acid, for instance? My book puts the reader in the mud, wet, cold, after those rains came. Hungry, thirsty and having to go the bathroom.

He talked about the sources used in his Woodstock book:

"I interviewed Carlos Santana and that incredible drummer of his who was barely 20, Michael Shrieve. I interviewed Graham Nash, two the guys in Canned Heat, two of the guys in Creedence Clearwater Revival. Interviewed members of Jefferson Airplane. But the interviews that I really like are from the fans that went there. They kept saying, 'Get down off the light towers,' when the heavy winds started to erupt. I found some of those kids that were on the light towers."

Greenblatt and his friends arrived at the festival site on Thursday and found a spot near the stage. The only mistake they made was leaving their supplies, such as food, water, pot and a camera in his car. Once there, they had so much fun even before the performances began that they never went back to the car -- until the drive home.

 
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