Everything You Need To Know About Michael Lang Death!

Everything You Need To Know About Michael Lang Death!

Michael Lang died on Saturday in a hospital in Manhattan. He was one of the organizers of the Woodstock festival, which brought more than 400,000 people to a farm in upstate New York in 1969 for a weekend of “peace and music” and lots of drugs, skinny-dipping, mud-soaked revelry, and highway traffic jams. It was one of the most famous scenes in 20th-century pop culture. He was 77.

A family representative, Michael Pagnotta, said that Mr. Lang died of non-lymphoma. Hodgkin’s

In August 1969, Mr. Lang was only 24 years old and had little experience putting on concerts. He and three partners, Artie Kornfeld, John P. Roberts, and Joel Rosenman, put on the Woodstock Music and Art Fair on land leased from a dairy farmer, Max Yasgur, in Bethel, N.Y., about 100 miles northwest of New York City.

Since Monterey Pop in California two years before, rock festivals had been popping up all over the country, and the Woodstock organizers, who were all in their 20s, were ambitious enough to hope that 50,000 people would show up. Mr. Lang and Mr. Kornfeld, a record executive, booked a good lineup, including Creedence Clearwater Revival, the Jimi Hendrix Experience, Jefferson Airplane, Janis Joplin, and a new group called Crosby, Stills & Nash (they would be joined at the festival by Neil Young). The dates for the show were August 15–17.

Everything You Need To Know About Michael Lang Death!

At $8 a day, they sold 186,000 tickets ahead of time. On the first day of operation, there was a lot of traffic on the New York State Thruway, and many people who had tickets did not make it. Others just walked on to the field without paying.

In an interview, Mr. Rosenman said that a few days before the show, the workers said they could either build a stage or ticket booths, but not both. The partners chose to build a stage.

As a celebration of rock as a unifying force and a manifestation of hippie ideals, the event became a turning point for the baby boomer generation. Even though there were almost 500,000 people there and most health and crowd control measures didn’t work, no violence was reported.

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In 1969, Mr. Lang was called a “groovy kid from Brooklyn” by The New York Times Magazine. He became the public face of the people in charge of the festival. In Michael Wadleigh’s hit documentary “Woodstock” from 1970, he was seen walking around the grounds with his hair in curls and a vest on. Even though Mr. Lang started the festival as a way to make money, he always said that its goal was to bring out the best in people.

“From the beginning, I believed that if we did our job right and from the heart, prepared the ground, and set the right tone, people would show their higher selves and make something amazing,” Mr. Lang wrote in his 2009 memoir, “The Road to Woodstock,” which he wrote with music journalist Holly George-Warren.

Michael Scott Lang was born in Brooklyn, New York, on December 11, 1944. He grew up in Bensonhurst with people from the middle class. His father, Harry, ran a business that put in heating systems, and his mother, Sylvia, kept the books.

Everything You Need To Know About Michael Lang Death!

Michael went to school at New York University and the University of Tampa. In 1966, he opened a head shop in the Miami neighborhood of Coconut Grove. Soon, he was involved in the music scene there, and in May 1968, he was one of the people who put on the Miami Pop Festival, which featured Hendrix, Steppenwolf, Blue Cheer, and Frank Zappa’s Mothers of Invention.

Later that year, Mr. Lang moved to Woodstock, N.Y., which at the time was known as a bohemian haven because Bob Dylan lived there. He soon met Mr. Around the same time, two young businessmen who shared a room on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, Mr. Roberts and Mr. Rosenman, put an ad in The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal introducing themselves as “young men with unlimited capital” looking for investment ideas.

Both Mr. Lang and Mr. Kornfeld have always said they never saw that ad. But the four men met at a recording studio in New York that Mr. Roberts and Mr. Rosenman had invested in. Mr. Lang and Mr. Kornfeld suggested a studio in Woodstock, which they said was full of talented people. They made a business partnership called Woodstock Ventures and decided to work together.

Mr. Lang wrote in his memoir that Mr. Roberts, who had gotten a lot of money as an inheritance, had agreed to pay for both the studio and the festival. In an interview, Mr. Rosenman said that the plan was for the money made from the festival to pay for the studio.

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When the Woodstock festival took place, the news at first made it sound like a disaster. The front page of the Daily News said, “Traffic Tight at Hippie Fest,” and the title of a Times editorial was “Nightmare in the Catskills.”

But pictures of fields full of long-haired fans hanging out peacefully and stars like Hendrix, the Who, and Santana attracting tens of thousands of fans spread around the world and set a new standard for rock festivals, even though many local governments quickly took steps to stop other hippie festivals from happening in their areas.

Everything You Need To Know About Michael Lang Death!

Lang and Kornfeld ended their business partnership. Mr. Roberts and Mr. Rosenman sold film and soundtrack rights to Warner Bros. to pay off more than $1 million in debts from Woodstock. According to Mr. Rosenman, it took about a decade for Woodstock Ventures to break even. In 2001, Mr. Roberts died, and in 2006, the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts, a performing arts center and museum, opened on the site of the 1969 festival.

In 1971, Mr. Lang started a record label called Just Sunshine. Folk singer Karen Dalton and funk singer Betty Davis were both signed to the label. He was also Joe Cocker’s manager. Cocker’s famous performance at Woodstock helped make him famous. Mr. Lang was also involved in the anniversary versions of Woodstock in 1994 and 1999. The 1999 version was ruined by fires, riots, and accusations of sexual assault, and he eventually became a minority partner in Woodstock Ventures.

This company owns the Woodstock festival’s trademark and other intellectual property rights, including the image of a dove on a guitar that was on the first poster for the festival. One of the licenses it gave out was to Woodstock Cannabis.

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