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4.5 out of 5 stars26
4.5 out of 5 stars
Format: Audio CD|Change
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on 14 June 2009
Those who participated as performer, audience or organiser in the Woodstock festival in 1969 were probably unaware that these three days were to mark the end of an era. Altamont was just around the corner, Vietnam would escalate and the idealism and spirit of 1967 could not last. The Woodstock festival drew together some of the greatest performers of the era and many of these performances went on to achieve iconic status as did the artists themselves. This 2CD set replicates the original issue on three vinyl LPs. The sound has been remastered and is much improved. The 'scars in fine leather' comparison of the original vinyl release still holds true but the scars are not much harder to identify. There is no additional material on this release. For that you will have to seek out the 4CD set or 'Woodstock 2'. This recording improves on a historic musical artefact and is as such, an essential addition to any collection.Woodstock
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This album always holds happy memories for me. Back in the early 80's my cousin was in the army. We had (have) similar tastes in music and every time he came home on leave he would have a clutch of interesting new albums for me to listen to. His leave would also mean there would be a family gathering at his house and an opportunity for me to listen to the said albums. On one such occasion he played this album to me and it had an immediate effect. I'll always remember during Country Joe's 'Fish Cheer' my father and uncle trying to cough conveniently when the crowd answered Country Joe's question 'What's that spell' so my Grandad could not hear what it spelled. But the reason it still remains in my collection is of course the music. Some of the biggest and most important artists of this era are here as well as some that might raise an eyebrow and the question 'Who?' from the younger generation.

Amongst the less well known would be the aforementioned Country Joe who gives us his impassioned anti Vietnam war anthem 'I Feel Like I'm Fixing To Die Rag', John Sebastian with a couple of hippy drippy acoustic gems and Sha Na Na's wonderful 50's rock'n'roll. The highlights are too many to list here but the pick of the bunch must be Hendrix's Star Spangled Banner, Joe Cocker's 'With A Little Help....', and The Who's 'We're Not Gonna Take It'. All the artists turn in excellent performances, and in some cases career defining, which is quite amazing given that the area was close to being a disaster zone. And that fact makes it even more amazing that these recordings sound so good. Yes they are a bit rough around the edges but it was 1969 and a disaster zone. Speaking of the sound, the remastering is excellent. I had the old edition and this is a huge improvement which also includes an informative essay about the event.

If you're trying to decide whether to replace that old cd edition you've got or wondering what all the fuss was about I recommend you go out and buy this. Just don't go shouting out the answer to Country Joe's 'What That Spell' if the kids or Grandad's about!!!!
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on 11 January 2014
You are really better off getting the artists studio albums or watching the film Woodstock. Sound quality is as you would expect for a 1960s outside live recording. Some of the playing and singing is pretty dodgy - at its worst fror example on the Canned Heat song.
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on 28 March 2013
Had this set of albums on plastic back in the 70s but wore them out . Apart for the awful Paul Butterfield track ( I love Paul Butterfield this track is crap!) ,this is a must for any lover of 60s music . The quality of the recordings are excellent given it was put down in 1969 ,
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on 21 August 2013
A fantastic record of a unique event, complete with squeaks and rattles (authentic!). The second album is also a must, and try to watch the film too!
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on 12 September 2013
5 ,stars for originality exactly how I remembered it sounding!
if you were there for the original you will love this!
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on 25 May 2013
This is a great cross section of the works available from the festival. Great music and well worth a listen.
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on 23 January 2015
This was a record that I didn't have first time round, despite being old enough to remember the event. I was a bit disappointed with the musical content, but it is a piece of American cultural, social and political history and for that reason 'worth listening to every now and again.
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on 23 July 2014
Having seen Woodstock at the cinema when it first came out,then I purchased the vinyl,I felt it time to obtain this for my CD collection.The music never dates ,an absolute must have
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on 12 December 2012
The music sounds as good as it did when first released many years ago.This is one of the real gems.
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