Over the weekend, Bethel, NY’s Bethel Woods Center For The Arts hosted a special three-night musical celebration in honor of the 50th anniversary of Woodstock, held adjacent to where the outdoor amphitheater now stands.
Originally intended as a full-fledged festival, the three-day event saw musical performances by Woodstock alumni Santana and John Fogerty, along with sets from Tedeschi Trucks Band, Ringo Starr, The Doobie Brothers, The Edgar Winter Band, Blood, Sweat, & Tears, Grace Potter, and a plethora of regional acts.
Along with the all-star cast of musical performances, Bethel Woods organizers orchestrated arts and crafts areas, artisan vendors, meet-and-greets with Woodstock alumni and scholars, and other activities throughout the weekend.
On Thursday, singer-songwriter Arlo Guthrie offered up a set of music prior to a screening of the Woodstock documentary. Prior to his performance, Arlo worked through Bob Dylan’s “The Times They Are A-Changin” for media at the bottom of the hill where the original Woodstock stage was located.
Arlo Guthrie – 8/15/2019 – Full Set
[Video: Ed Millner]
Friday saw sets by Blood, Sweat & Tears, Edgar Winter (whose brother, Johnny Winter, played Woodstock), and a headlining performance by Ringo Starr & His All-Star Band. Ringo honored Woodstock with The Beatles‘ “Get By With A Little Help From My Friends”, the tune with which Joe Cocker closed out his iconic Woodstock performance in 1969.
Ringo Starr – 8/16/2019
[Video: MidHudsonNews News]
Saturday saw a headlining performance by Carlos Santana and his band. Santana opened his set with a video reel of highlights from his 1969 Woodstock performance. Clad in a black Woodstock t-shirt, Santana worked through a career-spanning setlist featuring “Evil Ways”, “Black Magic Woman/Gypsy Queen”, “Oye Como Va”, “Maria Maria”, and “Smooth”, in addition to covers of John Coltrane’s “A Love Supreme”, John Lennon’s “Imagine”, and Jimi Hendrix’s “Voodoo Child”. Santana also welcomed up The Doobie Brothers for a cover of Bob Marley‘s “Exodus”. The two bands are currently on the road together on a co-headlining tour.
Santana – 8/17/2019
[Video: Michael Anderson]
After Grace Potter got Sunday’s festivities started, Tedeschi Trucks Band opened their set with “Soul Sacrifice” and later reprised the song, paying homage to Santana’s beloved rendition played at Woodstock in 1969. TTB’s set also contained John Sebastian‘s “Darlin’ Be Home Soon”, a song the band regularly plays but which was played on this night as yet another nod to Woodstock. The band closed their set with yet another Woodstock tribute in the form of their staple Sly & The Family Stone medley.
Woodstock alumnus John Fogerty, who was originally scheduled to perform as part of the canceled Woodstock 50 event, closed out the weekend. Fogerty worked through a number of Creedence Clearwater Revival tunes including “Born On the Bayou”, “Fortunate Son”, “Lookin’ Out My Back Door”, “Bad Moon Rising”, and “Proud Mary”, as well as a Woodstock-appropriate cover of “With A Little Help From My Friends”.
John Fogerty – 8/18/2019
[Video: Tricia Cote]