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New Woodstock Venue Rechristens The Garden

Twenty-nine is the magic number for Summer of Love hold-overs who
have been anticipating a Woodstock flashback since
1969.

One year short of the festival’s 30th anniversary, a gathering
of Free Love-era musicians will flock to Max
Yasgur’s
legendary farm for a celebration of peace, love
and happiness this summer. The oddly timed commemoration will kick
off Aug. 14 — 28 years and 164 days after the original opening —
with performances by Don Henley, Stevie Nicks, Ziggy Marley
& the Melodymakers
and Ten Years
After
, who originally performed at 8 p.m. on Aug. 17,
1969.

The following day will feature Woodstock veterans Pete
Townshend
[who will perform a healthy dose of
Who] and Richie Havens alongside
Lou Reed and Joni Mitchell, who
penned the legendary song “Woodstock.”

More acts may still be added, the concert’s executive producer
Danny Socolof told JAMTV on Wednesday

“This is almost a collection of rock’s greatest poet laureates,”
Socolof said. “Fans can look forward to one of the most compelling
groups of live artists ever assembled for any event.”

Dubbed “A Day in the Garden,” the two-day event will cater to a
more mature audience than Woodstock ’94, which
welcomed relatively young artists like Collective Soul,
Live, Nine Inch Nails, Metallica, Porno for Pyros
and
Green Day into the hippie fold. That all-star
anniversary celebration also waxed nostalgic with Woodstock
throwbacks The Band, Bob Dylan, Santana and
Crosby, Stills & Nash — none of whom are
slated to perform at this summer’s event.

“This is the first I’ve heard of [Woodstock 1998],” a
spokeswoman for Carlos Santana and Crosby, Stills
& Nash said when asked about a possible invitation to play. She
said Santana is booked at the Greek Theater in Los
Angeles that weekend, and will not likely jet cross-country to the
tribute. Though David Crosby and his side project
band CPR will be available this August, he has no
plans to perform now, she said. In addition, the Other
Ones’
spokesman said the remaining members of the
Grateful Dead have not received an invitation to
the Woodstock reunion either.

This summer’s Bethel, N.Y., festival is not being called another
Woodstock regurgitation, but rather the dawning of a new era.

“This is not a Woodstock, this is a Day in the Garden,” Socolof
said. “The owner of [Yasgur’s farm] is developing the site with
long-range plans to make it a large-scale music attraction and
event site. This is the grand unveiling.”

Though no future concert plans are in place at this time,
Socolof said the world’s most famous farm will receive more rock
‘n’ roll traffic in the near future.

Aside from the title, this year’s festival will differ from its
predecessors in both size and price. Though only eight artists are
scheduled to play the August shows, tickets will cost 250 percent
more than they did in 1969, when $18 bought you access to more than
30 acts over three days. Whereas tickets for 1994’s 40-artist
festival cost $135 for three days of music, this year’s promoters
are charging $69.98 for each day. However, “A Day in the Garden”
will reward family values by allowing children under 12 to enter
with an adult for free.

A spokeswoman for the event told JAMTV that promoters feel the $70 ticket price is
reasonable because acts like Nicks and Mitchell charge nearly that
much for a single show. Tickets for Nicks’ show this Friday at the

Walnut Creek Amphitheatre in Raleigh, N.C. sold
for between $17.50 and $47.50 each.

Like its renowned forerunners, this year’s shows will last
nearly all day, yet artists will play up to two-hour sets and
attendance will be limited to 30,000 per day. In contrast, 500,000
fans attended the three-day festival in 1969, and between 235,000
and 350,000 people grooved in Saugerties, N.Y., earlier this
decade.

“A Day in the Garden” will pay tribute to its roots by
displaying ’60s memorabilia and holding seminars on the era of
protest and passion. The festival, which was designed to attract
tourism and publicity to the town of Bethel, N.Y., will tap local
talent to perform on a side stage at the two-day festival.

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