Can you guess the correct answer to these interesting facts from Woodstock?


By: John Miller

6 Min Quiz

Image: wiki commons

About This Quiz

No other music event so thoroughly defined a generation. Woodstock was a revelation -- and a pigsty. How much do you know about this sprawling four-day music festival of the 60s?

Woodstock is called one of the most amazing moments in music history. When did it take place?

Woodstock happened, of course in 1969, as America writhed in social and political upheaval. The counterculture was in vogue. Hippies and flower children congregated to celebrate life and music during this epic event.


Woodstock became a symbol of a generation. Where did it take place?

The event unfolded in August at a farm in New York. The 600-acre farm was a quiet place -- until it became a major (if temporary) music venue.


The weather played a huge part during Woodstock. What was it like?

The weather was rainy during the four-day event. Dirt turned to mud, and mud became laced with feces from overflowing portable toilets. The fun was just beginning.


Hendrix added greatly to his legend by playing a cover version of which song?

Jimi ripped a hole in the space-time continuum with his rousing cover of "The Star-Spangled Banner." His feedback-drenched performance is still one of rock's greatest moments.


True or false? There were twice as many people as promoters expected. They made twice as much money.

The promoters should have made a killing. But their terrible logistics and organization meant they actually lost more than $1 million, and it took them years to pay it all off.


Huge numbers of concertgoers caused apocalyptic traffic jams that spread about how far?

Some estimates say that roads were clogged with abandoned cars up to 20 miles away from the venue, as hippies surged towards the fun. They simply ditched their cars and walked to the show … and locals were trapped by the onslaught of vehicles.


The event was poorly organized and featured nearly half a million people stomping around in the mud. How many people died?

Just three people died. One from a drug overdose, one from a ruptured appendix and one was run over by a tractor. No one took responsibility after the tractor accident.


Which artist was the last to perform at Woodstock?

Jimi Hendrix had a contract that spelled it out -- he was always the last artist to play at major gigs. On that Monday morning, he was the final artist to play the famed festival.


Local officials expected about how many people to show up for Woodstock?

Promoters and officials expected maybe 50,000 people, tops, to show up for the 32 acts that eventually signed on to perform at Woodstock. The real numbers were, shall we say, a bit different than their expectations.


How many people actually showed up?

Authorities expected maybe 50,000 concertgoers. Instead, the word about the show spread like wildfire and people gather en masse, to the tune of roughly 400,000. As far as the eye could see, patchouli and pot smoke filled the air.


Was Woodstock meant to be a free event to protest the Vietnam War?

Woodstock's legend makes it out to be a non-profit lovefest. But it was conceived as a for-profit concert by entrepreneurs looking to capitalize on young music lovers.


Did the concert's promoters know that way, way more than 50,000 people were going to show up?

The men secretly knew that far more than 50,000 people would be at Woodstock. But none of them expected 400,000. The surprise swell of people completely changed the scope of the concert, and screwed up logistics, too.


Promoters were eager to find big-name bands to draw as many music lovers as possible. Which band was the first to agree to perform at the festival?

At the beginning stages of planning, the promoters had a hard time finding well-known bands willing to play. But once Creedence Clearwater Revival signed on, the floodgates opened and big talents became more agreeable to the concept.


Which artist was the first to play at Woodstock?

Richie Havens was a relatively unknown folk rocker and bluesman who opened Woodstock on a Friday evening. Following the concert, he became fabulously famous. He ran out of songs during his set, and with other acts stuck in traffic, he was forced to improvise to keep the concert going. He made up a song called "Freedom" while on stage.


True or false? There were about 400,000 people prancing around doing drugs during Woodstock. More than 2,000 people were arrested.

There were only about 80 arrests during the entire event. Most of those arrests were for possession of hard drugs such as heroin and amphetamines -- no pot smokers wound up in handcuffs.


Why did concert promoters give up on selling tickets at the gate?

A crush of people descended on the venue and there was no way to control all of them. Fences were stomped and gates were felled -- and promoters gave up on selling tickets, meaning many people got the experience free of charge.


Hippie hero Joni Mitchell missed Woodstock. Why?

Mitchell supposedly wanted to play at Woodstock, but her manager convinced her to do "The Dick Cavett Show" instead. So the counterculture heroine missed out on one of the most important events of the era.


What was the "Hog Farm"?

Before Woodstock, promoters asked the Hog Farm, a hippie commune, to help with the event. Hog Farm members did some of the setup labor and also helped to keep crowds under control.


The Hog Farm formed a security force to patrol Woodstock. What was the name of the security group?

The Hog Farm deployed its high-trained "Please Force" to maintain order. The "security force" simply told misbehaving people: "Please don't do that; please do this instead."


Indian musician Ravi Shankar played Woodstock. What did he say about the experience?

Ravi Shankar played in a rain shower on that Friday. He said the whole experience was terrifying, as he watched drugged hippies stomp through the mud like crazed wild creatures.


What happened to food prices during the event?

The unexpected swarm of people quickly overwhelmed concessions stands, and prices spiked. Hot dogs were supposed to be 25 cents, but they eventually sold for $1, an outrageous price in 1969. That would be around $7 today.


Which of the following artists did NOT play at Woodstock?

Bob Dylan was another counterculture icon who missed Woodstock -- and his home was right down the road. He skipped it in part because he was traveling to another major concert, in England.


What did local residents do when they heard about massive food shortages at the event?

Locals were worried about hundreds of thousands of people going without food. They organized a food drive and had the items airlifted into the concert.


The event was almost entirely peaceful. So why did people decide to torch a hamburger stand?

Due to unreal demand, one hamburger stand jacked up its prices. Some concertgoers were angry about the food costs and opted to burn down the vendor's booth.


True or false? As a show of peace and unity, most artists played for free.

Woodstock wasn't the only large music festival of the era, and big acts wanted big money. Some of them nearly refused to play because they hadn't been paid in advance.


Creedence Clearwater Revival was one of the concert's biggest acts. What time did they take the stage?

CCR was one of Woodstock's biggest bands. But they didn't take the stage until 12:30 a.m. Sunday morning. That's OK, though, the drugs were still working.


The Grateful Dead was known for its long concerts. Why did the band abruptly stop playing its set?

The Dead was in the middle of a rather uninspiring set … and then one of its amps died. The band was forced to abandon the show.


Iron Butterfly was supposed to play Woodstock. Why didn't the band make it?

Iron Butterfly was stuck in traffic. They sent word to the promoters to arrange for (incredibly expensive) air transportation … and their request was shot down with a two-word obscenity.


Nearly 400,000 people were at the event during its peak. How many witnessed Hendrix's brilliant, climactic performance?

By Monday morning, the drugs had worn off and some people actually had to go to work. Perhaps 200,000 -- about half of Woodstock's peak attendance -- saw Jimi bring down the house.


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