"Woodstock 1999" - fragments of the story that remain untold

"When I saw all this, I thought, 'What is this? How did this happen? What is this called, Woodstock?" It would have made much more sense to call this festival Army Base Rock '99 with Limp Bizkit!"

The Truth They Prefer Not to Publicize: What Really Happened at Woodstock 1999

Today about Woodstock 1999 of the year is said to be one of the loudest rock festivals of the late 90s: hundreds of thousands of spectators, dozens of guest superstars of that era, summer, love and world peace! But few people prefer to tell the truth - to describe the true atmosphere that reigned at the American military base: for four days people enjoyed not only the music, but also the hellish conditions... The heat, the limited access to water, and the extremely heated situation - all this combined to turn the holiday show into chaos. Thanks to the film "Woodstock 99: Peace, Love and Fury." the truth was revealed to the world: people who were on stage and backstage those days told the details of the cult event, about which they tried not to disclose for a long time...

Problems with facilities and water

The location of Woodstock 1999
The location of Woodstock 1999

Despite the splendor of the musical numbers, people had to enjoy not only the great and beautiful, but also the down-to-earth ordinariness - for example, the horrific smell of "mud.". Only it was not just dirt, but diluted with all the delights of sewage. Alas, the public toilets overflowed and stopped working during the festival. As a result, the "mud" filled the tent area, and added its colors to the memories of eyewitnesses... In addition to all this there was infernal heat. In fact, she added to the extra hassle...

Woodstock organizers decided to take advantage of the heat: they wouldn't let people into the festival with their water, but instead sold four bottles for $4! But even these were not so easy to get because of the shortage of ATMs. Many turned to alcohol, which cost as much as water. Thus the crowd was slowly but surely getting drunk in the heat...

There were no professional security guards at the festival

Limp Bizkit at Woodstock 1999
Limp Bizkit at Woodstock 1999

Wearing yellow shirts with the words "Peace Patrol."many of the guards at the event were young guys with little experience. Many of the "guards." came there just to enjoy the music. So no proper patrolling of the crowd was out of the question. What's even more fascinating in this whole story is that the justice activists followed instructions and confiscated all the necessary supplies of water and food, while the psychoactive substances were of no concern to them at all...

It was not without accidents.

Woodstock 1999, riots
Woodstock 1999, riots

Gradually the public became... inadequate, to put it mildly. Tired, exhausted by the heat and fueled by alcohol and other revelatory gear - it was enough for a minor occasion for the crowd of several hundred thousand people to start a riot! As they approached the last day of the festival, the participants, in their own words, "went through hell and back again!" At one point the performance Red Hot Chili Peppers turned out to be a stage fire...

At the end of the festival, candles were handed out to the weary crowd for a well-intentioned vigil to honor the victims. Columbine. At one point, however, the ritual degenerated into arson of the venue. Within minutes, small flames turned into large bonfires, and angry spectators broke off pieces of the stage, stole goods, overturned food trucks, and destroyed inoperable showers and bathrooms...

The 1999 Woodstock riots
The 1999 Woodstock riots

The Red Hot Chili Peppers try to appease the audience by performing their version of "Fire" by Jimi HendrixBut the situation only got worse...

The audience was out of control

At Woodstock '99 the public was entertained in every way
At Woodstock '99 the public was entertained in every way

Most of the audience Woodstock 1999 years - young guys in their twenties. And gradually, under the influence of the heat and the lack of basic amenities with water, they became angry... Even too much. When the actress came on stage Rosie PerezThe crowd began to show maximum disrespect to her, shouting obscene things, including threats, from all sides. The result was a dangerous situation for all women: soon the fairer sex began to report attacks... or worse.

Woodstock 1999
Woodstock 1999

In the years since the infamous festival, more and more women have reported assaults and offenses by visitors to that event, which has since become the latest legacy of the failed show...

The artists also felt the tension

Limp Bizkit on Stage at Woodstock 1999
Limp Bizkit on Stage at Woodstock 1999

Many of the artists who performed at the "Woodstock 1999.Later on, they talked about how much they wanted the festival to be over as soon as possible... From memory Moby:

"You know - when you spend your life in nightclubs and concerts, you develop what's called a sixth sense willy-nilly. I can tell you from 100 feet away what the energy will be at a particular venue... And when we got off the bus, I thought, 'Something's wrong. And this, for a minute, was just the first day of Woodstock! I was making my way through the crowd, and everybody was angry, and everybody was hot, and everybody was complaining... The festival had only been open for six hours, but it had already gone off the rails, you know?"

According to the recollections of the artists, after each new performance the audience became angrier and angrier. angrier

MTV employees were fleeing

DMX at Woodstock '99
DMX at Woodstock '99

Fearing for their lives, the employees MTV really ran away from this sinking ship called "Woodstock 1999.. MTV, which had switched from covering counterculture to mainstream pop music shortly before the festival, was seen as the enemy by a weary and embittered public. Their coverage and presence at the festival was not welcome. From recollection Dave Holmes:

"From the first seconds we got there, we knew right away: this crowd didn't want us here at all. People were mad at us for taking their MTVs and giving them to their little sister. We were in trouble..."

As a result, the viewers destroyed the equipment and switched to the TV channel staff itself... "We had to get out of there right away!" - later recalled Kurt Loder.

The festival was held at a military base

Woodstock 1999 was held at a military base
Woodstock 1999 was held at a military base

Located in Rome, New York, at the former base of Air Force Griffiss, the place initially seemed to the organizers to be an excellent choice for the festival! Soon, however, this was called into question. And it was not only because the military base was not the best choice for an event dedicated to peace and love: the music stages were far away from each other, and the asphalt that seemed to increase the heat. Later Moby will say:

"When I saw all this, I thought, 'What is this? How did this happen? What is this called, Woodstock?" It would have made much more sense to call this festival Army Base Rock '99 with Limp Bizkit!"

The plan was to hold Woodstock 2019

Woodstock '99 venue after the festival
Woodstock '99 venue after the festival

Despite the notoriety of the festival and the fact that the city of Rome earned only $200,000one of the organizers Michael Lang announced plans for a three-day festival Woodstock'50 in honor of the 50th anniversary of the original Woodstock!

All that the crowd left behind when Woodstock '99 ended
All that the crowd left behind when Woodstock '99 ended

Fortunately, his plans were canceled after "a series of unforeseen failures".

The same year the "anti-Woodstock" took place.

Coachella Festival, 1999
Coachella Festival, 1999

A few months after the excitement surrounding Woodstock-1999 had died down, the Indio, Calif., put down roots first Coachella! The event took place in October 1999and featured popular hip-hop, hard rock, and electronic artists. For this reason, the audience was the most diverse! And a happy one at that.

Visitors were given free parking and a bottle of water at the entrance. The festival was a huge success, and was later even called "anti-Woodstock.".


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