Sunday, August 30, 2009

10 Years Gone- Remembering Woodstock '99 Road Trip

I remember when Woodstock 99 was announced. I was so excited about all these bands and how awesome this could be. My two best friends and I immediately purchased the 150 dollar tickets and began planning a massive two week road trip that we would never forget.

On the way we hit up camping at Mammoth Caves National Park in Kentucky. Beats the hell outta paying for a hotel. We set up our tent by a river branch and that's where we spent our first night off of the road.

Next stop we hit was Paramount's King Island in Cincinnati, OH. Here we relieved some tension riding the likes of The Top Gun, Face Off and the Beast.

Cleveland, OH would be the next stop. We checked out Jacob's Field and alot of downtown. Unfortunately for us The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame was closed due to a concert going on that night. Really wanted to check that out.

So we finally make our way to the former Griffis Air Force Base in Rome, NY. The site was surrounded by a high plywood and steel fence with many different hand painted designs. This with the five hundred state troopers were intended to keep out ticket less intruders.

The first day was spent setting up our tent in What seemed like miles and miles of them. We always had an adventure trying to find it every night around 3 am. We also checked out a few lesser known bands playing that day. The boiling heat would make sure we were up early for the next day.

James Brown Kicked off the event with his amazing band. The following acts appeared at the event

Alanis Morissette, Big Sugar, Bruce Hornsby, Buckcherry, Bush, The Chemical Brothers, Collective Soul, Creed featuring Robby Krieger, Dave Matthews Band, DMX, Elvis Costello, Everclear, Everlast, Fatboy Slim, G.Love and Special Sauce, George Clinton and The P.Funk All-Stars, Godsmack, Guster, Ice Cube, Insane Clown Posse, Jamiroquai, Jewel, John Entwistle, Kid Rock, Korn, Limp Bizkit, Lit, Live, Megadeth, Metallica, Micky Hart/Planet Drum, Mike Ness, Moby, The Offspring, Oleander, Our Lady Peace, Rage against the Machine, Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Roots, Rusted Root, The Brian Setzer Orchestra, Sevendust, Sheryl Crow, The Tragically Hip, Willie Nelson and Wyclef Jean with the Refugee All Stars.

As you can see something for everyone. What wasn't for everyone were the exorbitant prices for food. Small personal pizzas were twelve dollars, 20 ounce sodas and water four dollars. The number of Toilets did not total enough for the number attending and became unusable in a short time. The water fountains were destroyed until water was constantly flowing which caused the ground to become muddy. There were reports of Rape and violence but I witnessed none first hand. In fact I didn't see much of the fires and destruction until leaving the event, Vendors were robbed and People were throwing people shirts as they left. A car was turned over in front of the gate. The thirtieth anniversary of the original event promoting peace ended up like a revolution of a small country.

Being there for the music myself, I had a great experience. The event will go down in history for the violence and rage. With over 200,000 attendees I'm sure there are plenty others that had an overall great experience. We finished out the trip with New York City, Baltimore and a great tourist stop in Washington D.C. where we looked at all the usual fare. When I returned I also had orange hair but that's another story. There haven't been any Woodstock Anniversary events since this one and it's a shame. The moral of this story is don't be an idiot and ruin something for everyone else.


Post a Comment