Let’s Talk Woodstock ’99: A Quick Take

Honestly, if I was at Woodstock ’99 during Korn’s “Blind” intro/performance, I would have gone absolutely feral too! That shit was lit.

Korn gave one of the greatest (if not the best) music festival performances of all time! If you haven’t already, it’s worth checking out Netflix’s Trainwreck: Woodstock ’99 documentary that came out in July 2022. I’m upset no one nor Netflix suggested this documentary to me sooner but whatever. Better late than never, I guess.

Given that I was only 6 years old in ’99, the 90’s was a decade where many millennials wish they were young adults in. As a kid growing up in the 90’s and early 2000s, I’m grateful to have experienced a real childhood and the fact that I retained some great memories. I remember the fashion, the music/pop culture, watching some of the best cartoons and movies, the jungle gyms at McDonald’s, the feeling of being at Blockbusters, and actually living life without cellphones or the influence of social media. The air itself felt so much better and clearer back then. I truly feel bad for all the generations who come after millennials because they seriously missed out.

These are the quick takes from the Woodstock ’99 documentary and why I agree that Woodstock ’99 was indeed a trainwreck.

First of all, some of yawls parents, grandparents, aunties, and uncles should be ashamed of themselves casting judgement on today’s generation when they were dressing and acting like straight heathens at Woodstock ’69 (because I know ya’ll were on that booger shuga back then), Woodstock ’99, and Freaknik. Btw, I cannot wait for the Freaknik documentary next year. I already asked my parents, and they were not there so I shouldn’t be catching them on nobodies’ candid camera.

The review: 220,000 to 300,000 people in one central area is already a not-so-good decision. The co-creator Michael Lang and some of the other people in charge of managing and promoting this event should have known the “peace and love” energy from Woodstock ’69 was not gonna be the same energy 30 years later. Especially not with everything happening during that time- the social and political unrest, Columbine shooting, and certainly not with that lineup they had. Korn, Limp Bizkit, Rage Against the Machine, Kid Rock, and DMX is not givin’ sweet hippie vibes at all. The fact that James Brown opened the festival was very strange to me. The lineup in general was just all over the place honestly and it had no structure. Why in the world would they have Bush perform after Korn?! “Sorry to that man” cause they got booed bad.

I truly feel like the festival should have been only two days long if they couldn’t handle the huge crowd, maybe even just one day. Next, the venue was at an old military base. Although it had lots on space, hot tarmac and having the festival on/near dirt grounds is a recipe for disaster in the event that there’s a heat wave or if it rains. In this case, there was “shit mud” everywhere (iykyk) and it was very hot, literally in the middle of summertime. It would have been much better late spring or early fall.

The vendors were completely overpowered. They should have had way more concession stands for food and water available and better restroom facilities too. Also, taking water from people upon entry should be very illegal. I still can’t believe only 3 people died there- somebody must have miscounted. The trash and sewage problems were disgusting, the security crew was an absolute joke; there should have been way more skilled professionals there to handle a crowd of that size, and the price gouging was insane. The festival goers had every right to riot in my opinion. And it was 100% NOT Limp Bizkit’s fault. Fred Durst (from Limp Bizkit) put on a great performance and had that crowd feeding off the palm of his hand so beautifully. Some of your “favorite artists” today might need to take notes cause that’s how you put on a show. It was crazy how so many people got physically injured, blood gushing out of their heads but they were still out there raging and having the time of their life like they didn’t just get a concussion.

The nail in the coffin for me was the promotors (or whoever they were) handing out candles to the people in the crowd which as a result, started the fires. Like, they truly didn’t think a damn thing through here. The way Michael Lang and everyone else involved in management took no responsibility for what happened and flat out lied to the media like everything was going great was absurd. If social media was around during that time, I could only imagine the backlash, the cancel culture, and the number of more arrests that should have happened.

And lastly, I was saddened to hear about all the sexual assaults, the rape incidents, and the overall mistreatment of women at Woodstock ’99. It was super triggering for me. The festival goers were completely in the wrong and out of line for that part. Which made me notice there was definitely a lot more men than women at the festival and the age groups were too mixed. I don’t understand why you would have young teens and grown adults together at an event like that. But that’s pretty much everything I got from the documentary. It was just doomed from the very start.

Do I think another Woodstock festival would be successful in today’s world? Eh, I don’t know, maybe. But I don’t think it would be as big of a disaster. I feel like music festivals are a lot more controlled and organized (aside from what happened at AstroWorld). And now that we have social media, people might have a bit more sense and decency cause today’s society ain’t letting no sexual assaults and rape slide (and I love that). And I’m also certain the festival goers would never be given candles so; I think it could be more successful than Woodstock ’99. But it would never match the same vibe of the 90s unless some of the popular artists from ’99 are in the lineup AND if the lineup is also tailored around millennials with acts like Fall Out Boy, The Used, Paramore, etc. Would I attend it if it’s actually done the right way? Yes!

Was there anything else interesting you learned about Woodstock ‘99 from this documentary? I’d love to know your thoughts and feelings.

Korn- Blind Live in Woodstock ‘99

Till next time,

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