The show promoter has died in New York after a tough fight against a non-Hodgkin’s disease. It will be remembered as the greatest rock festival.
The world of rock woke up this Sunday, January 9, with one of that tragic news that makes everything turn gray. Michael Lang, co-creator and organizer of the legendary Woodstock Festival, held in 1969 and forever changed the history of music – also of the two subsequent editions in which they tried to replicate the original festival, those of 1999 and the unfortunate one of 1999- he left us this Saturday at the age of 77.
The death surprised him in New York City and, as his spokesman, Michael Pagnotta, has reported, the cause was a rare form of non-Hodgkin lymphoma that had been diagnosed long ago.
Michel passes away after a couple of two years without hearing from him publicly. The last time he appeared in public was very shortly before the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the festival that is already listed as the most important line of the legacy he leaves – and to which we at RockFM dedicate a series of ‘podcasts’ for that anniversary that you can remember again by clicking here -. A commemoration that was surrounded by the controversy of whether or not a re-enactment should take place, half a century later, of one of the events that will be remembered for many years to come.
Raised in one of the most legendary neighborhoods in the city that never sleeps like Brooklyn, he attended the university in that New York where he has also spent his last days. He studied these studies shortly before taking the path to which he would dedicate himself all his life: that of promoting concerts.
It was the late 1960s and his debut in the world was the 1968 Miami Pop Festival, which featured Jimi Hendrix, Frank Zappa, and John Lee Hooker, among other great rock names of the time.
His move to an area near Woodstock, also in New York, was the seed for, years later, to set up the most ambitious festival in memory. Together with co-founders John Rosenman, Artie Kornfeld, and John P. Roberts, they launched Woodstock, one of the most shocking events in music history, which drew some 400,000 people to a farm – owned by Max Yasgur – in Bethel. , New York and closing the New York State Freeway when attendees dumped their cars and found other means to get to the festival site.