The glimpses of the musical performances in these clips are from the point of view of someone in the crowd, not from a privileged camera position beside the stage. Any slightly closer shots are the result of a lengthy trek through the crowd and the mud, to a better vantage point.
Despite the fascination that the performers had for us then, the more
interesting images now are perhaps those of the people in the crowd. If you
were there, and you see yourself in one of these clips, please
let us know.
The sound in the clips includes music and announcements from the stage, mostly different from the excerpts that have become familiar in the Woodstock movie and record albums.
Click the pictures below to watch the QuickTime movie clips.
Our first glimpses of "the first free city in the world, in the Aquarian age"
are lots of tents and lots of people. (60 sec., 12 MB)
With a Little Help From My Friends (Richie Havens)
John Sebastian comments from the stage, "You're truly amazing,
you're a whole city!" and the festival begins with Richie Havens'
performance. (60 sec., 6MB)
Dear Landlord (Joe Cocker)
Joe Cocker and the Grease Band included this Dylan song in their set,
as squatters took up residence on the towers, and the rain moved in. (60 sec., 8MB)
Rain and mud, accompanied by an unknown voice singing "All the lonely people...."
Also some words of encouragement from the stage: "We're all in the same puddle!"
(60 sec., 9MB)
The Other Side of This Life (Jefferson Airplane)
Part of "the spirit of what this whole thing is about" is revealed in some
comments from the stage, and then we see a bit of the Airplane's early morning set.
(80 sec., 12MB)
Raise Your Hand (Janis Joplin)
She's introduced simply as "Miss Janis Joplin," and tears full-speed-ahead into
her opening song. The Kodachrome 40 film manages to capture her, lit only by the
orange and purple follow-spots. (110 sec., 16MB)
Heaven and Hell (The Who)
The Who are introduced as "A group who came to us especially for this festival..."
and they launch into their standard concert opener of the period.
There's also a glimpse of the end of their set. (120 sec., 18MB)
The clips come from 8mm Kodachrome 40 movie film shot on a Bolex Regular-8mm camera borrowed from the Queen's University Film Studies Dept. in Kingston, Canada. The sound was recorded on two audio cassettes in an early Sony portable Cassette-Corder. The original copies of the material have been donated to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.
Comments and questions are welcome via e-mail.
Thanks to some of the people who helped us in making this film: Kathy Wilson, Richard Bronskill, Robert Fresco and Peter Harcourt. Also the residents of White Lake and Monticello NY, the festival organizers and performers, and our bus driver.
-- Derek Redmond and Paul Campbell
More exclusive movie footage from Woodstock -- a silent 8mm clip shot by Jim Forrester,
including traffic jams, the crowd, and a glimpse of Country Joe onstage.
This entertaining 2018 novel by Kel D. Orbis tells the story of Daniel, a rebellious 15-year-old who runs away from home in western Canada, and joins a van full of hippies headed for Woodstock. It's written from his point of view, and about a quarter of the book recounts his adventures hour by hour at the festival. It's available through McNally Robinson Booksellers in Winnipeg.
For more photos, memorabilia and detailed background information about the festival, see some of the other web sites devoted to the Woodstock Story.
The images and movies on this page may be downloaded for private use only. Any reproduction or re-transmission without permission of the copyright holders is prohibited under copyright law. To license clips, contact us via e-mail.