“Woodstock” Original Soundtrack from the Film (remaster) by Various Artists

Artist: Various Artists
Title: “Woodstock” Original Soundtrack from the Film (remaster)
Label: Rhino Entertainment
Release Date: 6/2/2009
Genre: Rock
Rating: 4/5

On August 15th through August 18th 1969, the town of Bethel Woods, NY was host to a legendary Rock music and art festival called Woodstock. It was a gathering like no other and over the course of its three days found almost 500,000 people in attendance as some of the greatest acts in Rock music history assembled for the event. This CD captures the original soundtrack of the film and of course its two CD’s are only a minute sampling of what went down during this festival but if you are a fan of the film and own the release then this is the perfect audio companion for it. I felt that it also gives the younger fans a chance to absorb some of what actually happened had they any curiosity. As a film, this was an Oscar winning documentary which is now in the beginning stages of its 40th anniversary and among the many releases that will celebrate its history we get a remastered edition of the films soundtrack. Should you be one of those folks who still have the original three vinyl edition in your collection somewhere, by getting a copy of this CD, you can give those disks a breather and let them absorb some honor in your vintage library. Even though this is but a sample of the three days of music we have a lot of amazing treats on it and many songs that put bands on the map and found their careers forever changed as a result.

Bands like The Who were already well known, but others like Ten Years After and Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young were not. As a matter of fact I believe that this performance was CSNY’s second or third gig as a group and that is amazing when you think about it. We get the incredible “Soul Sacrifice” by Santana in its entirety along with the drum solo and the still historically resonating Hendrix rendition of “Star Spangled Banner” among many others. At the time of this writing, I have discovered that a number of full sets from a wide number of bands will be released at some point during 2009. One can only hope that we see the full performance from The Who, because they did a 25 song set that I am sure was amazing. The included “We’re Not Gonna Take It” is wonderful to hear on the release but for fans of the band amounts to a cruel tease. Other favorites of mine include Canned Heats “Going Up To The Country”, Country Joe’s “Feel Like I’m Fixing To Die Rag” and of course the Joni Mitchell penned “Woodstock” as done by CSNY.

The packaging is an eco-friendly digipak that folds out to a visual of the massive crowd of humanity from the perspective of the stage. It’s rather impressive when one thinks of how such a gathering found only minor criminal issues and problems and how all of the attendees worked with one another to make sure a good and safe time was had by all. I highly doubt that we shall ever see something of this kind again in many of our lifetimes. There is a sixteen page booklet included that is loaded with liner notes, track information and photos that will be a treat to anyone who picks up a copy of the CD. The film has a deluxe edition available as well which delivers two hours of additional performance and dialogue content and it comes in a standard edition and a special edition with a lot of little trinkets in it. Based on how important this film is to you as a music fan there is bound to be something for you in either version. Thanks to Mr. Lang, Rosenman, Roberts and Kornfeld for making this happen in the first place and thanks to many amazing bands that became influences to generations of music followers and performers going forward. Happy Anniversary Woodstock. Peace.

Track Listing: Artist
1. John Sebastian
2. Canned Heat
3. Richie Havens
4. Country Joe & the Fish
5. Arlo Guthrie
6. Sha Na Na
7. Country Joe McDonald
8. Joan Baez
9. Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young
10. The Who
11. Joe Cocker
12. Santana
13. Ten Years After
14. Jefferson Airplane
15. Sly & the Family Stone
16. Butterfield Blues Band
17. Jimi Hendrix

Official Website: http://www.woodstock.com
Official Website: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Woodstock

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