OT: RIP Folk Legend Richie Havens

Submitted by chatster on April 23rd, 2013 at 7:10 AM

The folk-rock band Sweetwater was the scheduled opening act for Woodstock ‘69, but they were stuck in traffic on the way to the festival, so, as has been reported elsewhere,

Richie Havens had been among the first to arrive at the performers’ staging area in nearby Liberty, New York. As the afternoon wore on and the crowd, estimated at 500,000 people, waited for the show to begin, concert organizers persuaded Havens, along with his guitarist, Paul Williams, and his drummer, Daniel Ben Zebulon, to squeeze into a helicopter with their two conga drums and two guitars for the quick ride to the festival stage.  http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-04-22/richie-havens-who-opened-woodstock-music-festival-dies-at-72.html

The rest is music history: 



Bando Calrissian

April 23rd, 2013 at 9:07 AM ^

I saw Richie at The Ark the evening of the 2003 Notre Dame game. Went straight from the stadium to the show. It blew my mind. One of the best shows I've ever seen.

After the show, he sat around for well over an hour signing autographs and talking to people, and he couldn't have been kinder. A truly gentle soul who truly cared about both his music and his fans. Until he stopped touring last year, he had basically been on the road for over forty years straight.


April 23rd, 2013 at 11:08 AM ^

Getting stuck on their tour bus on their way to the original Woodstock Festival kept Sweetwater from appearing in the filmed documentary or on the soundtrack.  But they were the first band to play at Woodstock 1969. From the what-might've-been files from that era, here's a sample of Sweetwater: