Woodstock 50 and the drama surrounding it has been playing out very publically in the press, but behind the scenes, there might be more issues particularly with a lack of communication with the 80 artists booked for the festival.
Billboard is reporting that a variety of representation, from managers to publicists to agents, have not received any new updates on the venue from organizers Michael Lang and Greg Peck. This is especially troublesome because the new venue, Vernon Downs, is about two hours away from the festival’s original venue, Watkins Glen International. Artists and their management will need to adjust travel plans for personnel and equipment, especially if any of the acts on the bill are currently on tour and the Woodstock 50 set was scheduled between tour dates.
There’s also the issue with the fact that the booked artists have already been paid for their Woodstock 50 appearance by Dentsu, the festival’s original financial backer who infamously pulled their support and announced the festival was canceled back in April. While Dentsu has no legal grounds to tell artists they don’t have to play Woodstock 50, a source told Billboard, “Each artist will have to make a decision about whether this is something they want to take on now that so much has changed. Often, the artist will feel compelled to play because they don’t want to disappoint their fans, but in the case of Woodstock 50, no one has bought tickets yet, so there’s not really anyone to disappoint.”
Tickets have yet to go on sale for Woodstock 50, which is still set to take place August 16-18, and the event doesn’t have any sort of full-time producing partner involved. Another source told Billboard is things don’t come together soon, “I think you’ll see a few agents say that Woodstock 50 is in breach of contract and artists will start to pull out.”
Frankly, it’s amazing that hasn’t happened already. Less than two months out from the festival date and there’s no official venue AND tickets have yet to go on sale? Hopefully, the artists will do what Lang hasn’t had the nerve to do and just put Woodstock 50 out of its misery.