Hippies Bummed
January 9, 2008 6:42 AM   Subscribe

For Sale: Max Yasgur's Farm

Don't read it only to see how much the farm is going for--there's also a good story in the pages of the homesite home site.

(I'm ticked because my band was booked to play at one of their annuals the same year the townsfolk decided that they'd had it.)

Thanks, Ron and Jeryl!
posted by not_on_display (55 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
Well I came across a child of God
He was walking along the road
And I asked him tell where are you going
This he told me..
posted by pwedza at 7:02 AM on January 9, 2008


yeah, great, now we're going to have 64,000+ mefites claim they were there in '69
posted by HuronBob at 7:10 AM on January 9, 2008


the brown acid is still about 5 bucks a tab
posted by pyramid termite at 7:10 AM on January 9, 2008


Hell I was born there.
posted by dobbs at 7:15 AM on January 9, 2008


Good. Maybe this will finally put Woodstock to bed along with all the other Boomer mythology that they like to trot out when they want to make us forget that they're the generation who gave us George W. Bush et al.
posted by Afroblanco at 7:47 AM on January 9, 2008 [1 favorite]


Yeah, and actually made a dent and stopped a pointless war through direct action. And made the civil rights movement happen. And gave us weed.
posted by sfts2 at 7:53 AM on January 9, 2008 [4 favorites]


$8 million seems like a lot just for a field where Blind Melon and Spin Doctors once played.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 7:57 AM on January 9, 2008 [8 favorites]


Every FPP should reference Joni Mitchell lyrics.
posted by nonmerci at 7:57 AM on January 9, 2008


"my analyst told me
i was right out of my head
the way he described it
i'd be better dead than live ..."
posted by pyramid termite at 7:58 AM on January 9, 2008


(yes, i know joni didn't write that - sue me)
posted by pyramid termite at 7:59 AM on January 9, 2008


I wasn't there in '69 (being not born yet), but my bf and I did drive out there in May of this year. The blight on the general area was striking: its a beautiful part of the country, but the economic downturn in the area is apparent. The new Bethel Arts Center (the actual site of the 69 concert) is super swanky, in stark contrast to how most people think of Woodstock. The field is still very recognizable, though. It's weird going out there... there's virtually no signage or reference to Woodstock. We drove by the place twice, and eventually had to stop for directions. From talking to the locals (and reading the links) the whole project has been a swirl of controversy. It's just so strange that Woodstock, NY which is 60 something miles from Bethel, is flourishing on the '69 phenomena, while Bethel and the surrounds are sort of languishing in obscurity.
posted by kimdog at 8:07 AM on January 9, 2008


I was conceived there.
posted by desjardins at 8:13 AM on January 9, 2008 [1 favorite]


Yeah, and actually made a dent and stopped a pointless war through direct action.

Sure they stopped it.... after it had been going on for 10 years.

And made the civil rights movement happen.

Ok, credit where credit is due. Although I'd argue that most of the people who made the civil rights movement happen never even considered going to Woodstock.

And gave us weed.

Since when was Louis Armstrong a baby boomer?
posted by Afroblanco at 8:13 AM on January 9, 2008


Not really. I was born in '74.
posted by desjardins at 8:13 AM on January 9, 2008


Yeah, and actually made a dent and stopped a pointless war through direct action. And made the civil rights movement happen. And gave us weed.

Boomers actually made a dent..: They most certainly did; but was it through virtue of their actual ideas, the nobel content of these ideas? Or was it more of a function of their sheer number? ...Oh, and btw, where are all these progressive boomers today when we need their votes?

Made the civil rights movement happen: It helped that we had a huge quantity of young people eager to rebel against the assumptions and values of their parents' generation, but don't pat your tie-died back just yet, the civil rights movement would have happened anyway.

Gave us weed: You're kidding, right?
posted by applemeat at 8:15 AM on January 9, 2008


tie-dyed
posted by applemeat at 8:16 AM on January 9, 2008


1 - Actually, I think there are probably greater numbers of people in the current generation, no?
2 - I'm wondering how you are so sure? Young people eager to rebel and stand up for their convictions. Sure there are plenty in all generations, so why insult your elders? Plenty of young republicans voting for GWB too, no?
3 - Obviously.
posted by sfts2 at 8:26 AM on January 9, 2008


And I've had this discussion before, so allow me to clarify my position.

I'm not saying that the boomers never gave us anything. I mean, hell, they gave birth to lots of us. I've just got what I'd like to call Sixties Fatigue.

You see, I'm just sick to shit of seeing the same old tired tropes dragged out year after year. About how the sixties were so damn exciting, so damn progressive, how you could just feel the change in the air. In fact, as I type this, I'm imagining the standard Sixties Stock Footage Montage :

(stock footage of Woodstock)

"It was the sixties. Things were different."

(stock footage of civil rights protesters)

"Ideas were changing."

(stock footage of moonwalk)

"It was a unique moment in history."

(stock footage of San Fransisco acid test or The Factory)

I'm just sick of it. Sick, sick, sick of it. If anything, the common image of the sixties for me brings to mind nothing other than man's hubris; here's a generation completely unaware that some day they'll grow up and have children and become even more lame and reactionary than their parents ever were. Last I checked, the paranoid, lily-white conservative suburbs weren't hurting for residents.

Not to mention the fact that the hippies and radicals were really only a small part of a population that was still, for the most part, pretty damn square.

So I'm not saying that they gave us nothing, or that nothing came out of the sixties. As has been mentioned, the civil rights movement was amazing step forward, although I would argue that the hippies had little to do with it. And god knows, we got some kickass music out of the 60s and 70s- in fact, I'm still waiting for my generation to step up. But all the nostalgia? You know exactly what you can do with it.
posted by Afroblanco at 8:28 AM on January 9, 2008 [9 favorites]


Gave us weed

True. I was a sophomore in HS in June 1976 and after school I was riding my bike over to my friend's house to listen to the new Peter Frampton live album. The Baby Boom Generation was over there because my friend's older brother knew them. I was a little standoffish at first because when I was playing Little League the previous summer, the Baby Boom Generation had laughed at me when I struck out swinging with bases loaded. My friend Sam said, shake it off, the Baby Boom Generation sucked at baseball when they were in school and besides, they drove a really crappy car, I think it was a Pinto station wagon, so who the hell were they?

Anyway after school that one day the Baby Boom Generation was acting all secret and smiley with my friends brother and every now and then they'd disappear into the basement and put on Dead albums, then come up again laughing like hell. The Baby Boom Generation had this really obnoxious laugh like a braying donkey. Finally my friend was like, God, why don't you losers just stay downstairs and get out of our face. The Baby Boom Generation was like, right, you babies have to stay up here because Dead might blow your mind. So I was like, Triumph kind of sucks anyway, let's go down and play pool. When we came down the Baby Boom Generation was sitting at the coffee table shaking down the seeds from a nickel back on the gatefold of a copy of Jefferson Airplane Volunteers and the rest is history.

So while the Baby Boom Generation was obnoxious, they did in fact give us weed that one day.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 8:28 AM on January 9, 2008 [18 favorites]


It's just so strange that Woodstock, NY which is 60 something miles from Bethel, is flourishing on the '69 phenomena, while Bethel and the surrounds are sort of languishing in obscurity.

Bethel, NY can suck it as far as I'm concerned. They spent 30+ years passing laws to discourage kids & longhairs from bothering their little redneck town, so they're more than welcome to continue enjoying their hippie-free economically depressed little town.
posted by Banky_Edwards at 8:42 AM on January 9, 2008 [1 favorite]


Hey man, didn't Dylan live in Bethel for a while. Yeah, I think he did.
posted by ashbury at 8:49 AM on January 9, 2008


He did- while he was recovering from some motorcycle accident. My mother's grandparents lived in Bethel, and my aunt tells this story about how she was in the car with my great-grandmother and a Dylan song came on the radio, and she says "oh, that's that nice Bobby Zimmerman, he helps me with my groceries."

My mother also hung out in Big Pink with the Band, and I'm pretty sure she slept with one of them, although she refuses to confirm it.

And god yes, is Bethel ever a dump.
posted by Dormant Gorilla at 9:10 AM on January 9, 2008 [1 favorite]


About how the sixties were so damn exciting, so damn progressive, how you could just feel the change in the air.

but you could - america in 1963 and america in 1969 were two different places

how much of that was because of the baby boomers and how much of it was due to other forces is quite debatable but the country changed a LOT over that decade

much of what we take for granted now was unthinkable culturally in the early 60s
posted by pyramid termite at 9:16 AM on January 9, 2008


Flanked by shrouded mists, a grassy hill slowly materialized. At its summit rested a barn.

Not far off were other architectural venues, which the farmhouse vaguely recognized. The Mudd Club and Max's Kansas City were in attendance, along with the Rhinecliff Hotel.

"So, they got you too, huh?", whispered a proud marble structure.

The farm paused. "Penn Station?", it asked, "I didn't realize you had gigs-"

"-Of course it did," laughed CBGBs. "If you count the street musicians."

The farm sighed, and chuckled. "So, where are we, anyway?", it implored its peers.

"Where do you think we are?", rang our the response of the others.

The barn giggled uncontrollably, as grass fluttered upon its hilltop.

"This must be Heaven, man!"

posted by Smart Dalek at 9:20 AM on January 9, 2008 [3 favorites]


But all the nostalgia? You know exactly what you can do with it.

They're old now. They were young then. What are they supposed to look back on with fondness -- middle age?
posted by Atom Eyes at 9:28 AM on January 9, 2008


Maybe this will finally put Woodstock to bed along with all the other Boomer mythology that they like to trot out when they want to make us forget that they're the generation who gave us George W. Bush et al.

That would be George the Elder and Barbara who gave you GWB, not any component of the Baby Boom.

By the way, nobody except narcs called themselves 'hippies' back then. It was a word other people used, probably a lot like 'slackers.' So thanks for applying that derogatory term to people you apparently know nothing about.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 9:34 AM on January 9, 2008


Hey Afroblanco,

Peace, man. Be cool.
posted by RussHy at 9:40 AM on January 9, 2008


yeah, great, now we're going to have 64,000+ mefites claim they were there in '69

I looked all over for you, HuronBob, but couldn't find you anywhere. So — after Country Joe led his F*I*S*H cheer — I went home.
posted by LeLiLo at 9:42 AM on January 9, 2008


They're old now. They were young then. What are they supposed to look back on with fondness -- middle age?

Good point, but this would only explain why we should be hearing about boomer-mythology now in recent years. Yet if boomer nostalgia were only recent thing it would not have had a chance to wear out its welcome and become nearly as eye-rollingly tedious as it is to many of us who were born in the late 60's or the 70's and who have been subjected to these self-congratulatory platitudes for all of our lives.
posted by applemeat at 9:52 AM on January 9, 2008


Last I checked, the paranoid, lily-white conservative suburbs weren't hurting for residents.

The most Republican people I know are younger than me, and I am 55. So blaming the '60s generation seems pretty odd. All those College Republicans who are so goddamned reactionary are the children or even grandchildren born to the '60s generation, not OF that group. Every analysis I see still shows my age group as more Democratic than Republican. So there's a lot to blame on the '60s generation--which shouldn't be conflated with the entire Baby Boom group--but Republicanism isn't one of them. Unless someone can show me some numbers that I've missed. I blame it on the group about 10 years behind me--the Reagan aficionados who came of age in the late 1970s/early 1980s.
And you are right about the paranoid lilywhite suburbs but that's a function of post-World War II housing restrictions and segregation patterns than began before the largest number of Boomers were born and simply continue in their racist, I-got-mine-screw-you ways.
posted by etaoin at 9:58 AM on January 9, 2008


Yeah, and actually made a dent and stopped a pointless war through direct action. And made the civil rights movement happen. And gave us weed.

I can't really call it on the rest of it, but Malcolm X was almost 40 when he died in '65, MLK also almost 40 when he was killed 3 years later. Hell, Thurgood marshall was in his mid 40's when he won Brown vs. The Board of ed. in front of the Supreme Court. In 1954. A year in which most Boomers were still drinking ovaltine and watching Howdy Doody. It was my grandparents, not my parents who always had stories for me about marches and hearing Malcolm and Martin speak, and all that good stuff.
posted by billyfleetwood at 10:03 AM on January 9, 2008


Afroblanco writes "But all the nostalgia? You know exactly what you can do with it."

Ah, wait until you get old.
posted by krinklyfig at 10:03 AM on January 9, 2008


applemeat writes "Yet if boomer nostalgia were only recent thing it would not have had a chance to wear out its welcome and become nearly as eye-rollingly tedious as it is to many of us who were born in the late 60's or the 70's and who have been subjected to these self-congratulatory platitudes for all of our lives."

You mean like "the greatest generation," who were the boomers' parents? I've been hearing a lot about them my whole life.
posted by krinklyfig at 10:04 AM on January 9, 2008


You make an excellent point, krinklyfig.
posted by applemeat at 10:11 AM on January 9, 2008


Wow, Afroblanco. Way to pigeon-hole an age group.

The thing about boomers in their day is like any generation. They weren't all cut out of one mold.

About a third of them were hippies or hippie trend whores.

The other two thirds were frat boys and rednecks.

What you could "feel in the air" then was fear. Like, the fear you might feel knowing that you were probably going to get your ass kicked in for walking down the street with long hair.

The hippies could do what they did because they were into direct action. They gathered in large numbers and sat around to get their point across. It seemed to work pretty well for getting a point across, that organized sitting in.

This didn't work so well upon growing up in a democracy because we have to vote and the majority wins. Young people didn't have the right to vote, then. The majority of boomers were frat boys and rednecks, just like any generation. Now they vote and the frat boys and rednecks win.

What generations since have lacked is a sense of direct action and a willingness to confront their fears to stand up for what they believe in spite of the probable consequences from the majority of people around them. What they lack is letting their freak flag fly.

And I'm pretty sick of all those generations since. They suck big time.
posted by 3.2.3 at 10:13 AM on January 9, 2008


Baby Boomers sit around: Direct Action!! Confronting Their Fears and Standing Up for What They Believe In!

Gen X'ers sit around: ..slackers.
posted by applemeat at 10:20 AM on January 9, 2008


Van Morrison lived in Woodstock during 1970-1971, and recorded Moondance and His Band and the Street Choir while he lived there.
posted by kirkaracha at 10:22 AM on January 9, 2008


Yet if boomer nostalgia were only recent thing it would not have had a chance to wear out its welcome and become nearly as eye-rollingly tedious as it is to many of us who were born in the late 60's or the 70's and who have been subjected to these self-congratulatory platitudes for all of our lives.

it's ok, applemeat - in 20 years, YOU can bore the younger generations with tales of playing pacman, watching mtv and watching space shuttles explode
posted by pyramid termite at 10:30 AM on January 9, 2008


What generations since have lacked is a sense of direct action and a willingness to confront their fears to stand up for what they believe in spite of the probable consequences from the majority of people around them. What they lack is letting their freak flag fly.

This is a falsehood.

It was a lot easier get your point across back then. Things like protests and sit-ins actually impressed and scared people. Nowadays? Protests are a joke. A couple years back, I was in a *huge* protest against the Iraq war here in NYC. People said that it set records for turnout. The whole thing was very civil and well organized, and everybody behaved themselves rather well. Yet did it actually effect anybody or anything? Not really. Not at all, in fact. In retrospect, I think the whole thing was staged for the benefit of the people participating in it.

And I'm not trying to pigeonhole an agegroup. I'm just sick to shit of hearing about how great the sixties were, considering how much the present sucks and how much the 60's Generation is to blame for it sucking.

Back then, they wanted power. Now they're the ones in power, and things are nearly as grim as they were back then. They've just replaced OMGCOMMUNISM with OMGTERRORISM.
posted by Afroblanco at 10:40 AM on January 9, 2008 [1 favorite]


Now they're the ones in power, and things are nearly as grim as they were back then.

Meet the new boss. Same as the old boss!

At least The Who didn't buy up all that shit. At the time.
posted by Camofrog at 10:51 AM on January 9, 2008


They should set up a monument to the Baby Boomers there, perhaps a speaker that drones out a constant whine, like a La Monte Young piece or an aural Eternal Flame.
posted by Falconetti at 11:48 AM on January 9, 2008


Afroblanco writes "Back then, they wanted power. Now they're the ones in power, and things are nearly as grim as they were back then. They've just replaced OMGCOMMUNISM with OMGTERRORISM."

Actually, the people who are "in power" are not the same people who attended Woodstock. Remember, Bill Clinton tried pot but claimed he didn't inhale. That's a little like saying, I went to Woodstock, but I only drove past it in my car while the concert was going. And do you really think GWB was there?

Anyway, blaming all the world's problems on your parents isn't a very good strategy, either.
posted by krinklyfig at 2:18 PM on January 9, 2008 [1 favorite]


Woodstock evokes so many things in me, but mostly it epitomizes this crux in social history. A time when actual changed happened, at least in the western world, of the role of women, the recognition of the humanity of all of us, at the same time a multitude of pointless wars were going on. Was it all bullshit talk? No. But some ideals meet the real world and eventually sell out, like the concept of Woodstock© itself -- it becomes becomes a shell of itself, an empty meaning, a stamp, a vessel which one can pour any story or argument into. But the message remained: it was about a bunch of kids getting together to party, listening to great music, exchanging ideas, being trendy, and still behaving well.
posted by not_on_display at 5:36 PM on January 9, 2008


Oooh I shouldn't write when I got Vicks-44d in me. Is that Hendrix...?
posted by not_on_display at 5:37 PM on January 9, 2008


Afroblanco, our nostalgia is already better than your nostalgia will ever be.
posted by ronin21 at 6:32 PM on January 9, 2008 [1 favorite]


much of what we take for granted now was unthinkable culturally in the early 60s

This is not always a good thing.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 8:07 PM on January 9, 2008


Actually, there's one key point that needs to be made clear to Afroblanco, and it's one that should make him completely retract everything he's said so far in this thread about the 60s boomer hippies. Because there's one all-important, overriding cultural precedent that they set back in those halcyon days, and it's one that he, of all people, should respect:

White guys with big blonde afros.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 11:41 PM on January 9, 2008


That's the 70s, dude. Get it straight.
posted by Afroblanco at 7:26 AM on January 10, 2008


Not so.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 9:18 AM on January 10, 2008


Well, in that case, the 60s deserve the blame for my haircut being referred to as "retro." It's not retro at all, unless you're talking about 3000 years retro, seeing as that my 'fro is 100% all-natural JewFro.

It's just the way that it grows.
posted by Afroblanco at 10:21 AM on January 10, 2008


Kirth Gerson, Afroblanco: Looks like you're both right.

"The modern style dates to the 1960s."

"However, during the later half of the 1970s, the style passed into the cultural mainstream and for many people became simply a fashion that sometimes even Caucasian men (and women) with looser, less curly hair adopted."

(I had a jewfro in 1974)
posted by applemeat at 10:22 AM on January 10, 2008


"...during the later half of the 1970s, the style passed into the cultural mainstream"

My point exactly. The trail was blazed by a handful of intrepid, big-haired boys of the 60s. The 60s that Afroblanco loves to hate. Get it straight, Afro B!

Well, I had a feeling you'd be touchy about that 'fro, AB! But anyway, you seem to have turned the whole thing into yet another reason to blame the 60s. Hilarious!

BTW, ol' Noel Redding with his big hair that Kirth linked to was clearly one of the biggest dumb-luck figures in rock music history... landing that gig with Hendrix.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 2:42 PM on January 10, 2008


(I'm joking about blaming the 60s for my hair.)

(But I'm not joking about the hair itself. It really does just naturally grow this way.)
posted by Afroblanco at 2:57 PM on January 10, 2008


(I'm joking about blaming the 60s for my hair.)

I thought so. That's why I said "hilarious!" :)
posted by flapjax at midnite at 3:55 PM on January 10, 2008


Actually, if you really want to get technical, we should blame the 70s for my hair, since I was born during that decade.

Occasionally, people ask me, "What are you, from the 70s or sumpin?"
To which I reply, "Well.... yes."
posted by Afroblanco at 4:00 PM on January 10, 2008


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