Woodstock 50 is set to take place between August 16 and 18. That’s three weeks away, and the event only just booked a venue, as it was revealed yesterday that the festival is set to take place at Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, Maryland. The move out of New York, where the festival was originally intended to be hosted, was followed by the news that Jay-Z and John Fogerty decided to pull out of the event. The festival’s lineup problem apparently extends well beyond just those two artists jumping ship: Billboard reports that Woodstock 50 organizers have officially released all artists on the original lineup from their contracts.
Last night, festival organizers and Michael Lang reportedly emailed talent agents whose clients were on the bill, and let them know that they would not attempt to enforce their performance contracts for Woodstock 50. Essentially, this means that as it stands now, it seems Woodstock 50 has no artists officially booked to perform as part of its lineup. At the moment, organizers are apparently trying to book a new lineup.
Seth Hurwitz, who runs Washington D.C.’s 9:30 Club, is apparently helping with the event, and he told Billboard that at the moment, he’s waiting on Lang to confirm that the festival will go on as scheduled: “Michael Lang called me a week ago about doing the show in DC proper but, on this short notice, there really wasn’t anywhere to do that. I suggested Merriweather would be a low risk option and is considered DC. Plus it has a similar historic legacy. We made a deal quickly contingent on him putting a show together and dealing with the fact that we have a show booked on one of those dates. So now I’m just a venue waiting to see if the promoter with the hold is going to confirm.”
It’s entirely possible that Woodstock 50 is able to re-book at least some of the artists that were announced as part of the original lineup, but based on this new information, it appears that organizers are in the process of starting over, less than a month before the event is supposed to happen.