The Woodstock Story Book by Linanne G. Sackett and Barry Z. Levine

The Woodstock Story Book by Linanne G. Sackett and Barry Z. Levine is much more than photographs of the infamous peace concert called Woodstock.  It’s a chronicle of the festival from its inception to its completion.  Levine’s images are immediate, palpable, and candid, while Sackett’s storytelling is clipped, providing only the essential details readers will need to grasp the photos before them.  The foreward, written by Wavy Gravy, discusses the nostalgia he felt after seeing the book in its completion, and he notes that even though the outdoor festival ended, the principals and dreams of Woodstock live on.

“People, who were called freaks because of their hair and their way of dressing, came to Woodstock and they said, ‘Holy smokes.  We’re all freaks’ and they began to embrace that term.  There were a lot of people who opposed the Viet Nam War that thought they were alone.  They looked around and realized that they weren’t alone–that there were a half a million people who felt the same way,” Wavy Gravy says in the book.  (Page 3)

Through poetic lines, The Woodstock Story Book tells a lyrical account of the days leading up to the festival, the struggles with locating a large enough venue, and the community created in just a few days.  The festival’s stages were not even completed before the crowds started arriving.  Check out this crowd shot from Barry Levine’s Web site.

“They Stood for their truth
and pointed out lies

They were accused of
Communist ties”  (Page 40)

The Woodstock Story Book is an essential photographic history of a tumultuous time in our nation’s history.

From my D.C. Literature Examiner preview of the book (check out the full article):

This 40th anniversary, collector’s edition provides readers with a backstage pass to the best outdoor event in our nation’s history.  Even after 40 years, the Woodstock experience in Bethel, New York, between Aug. 15 and Aug. 18, 1969, continues to capture the imagination.

With never-before-seen photos of Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jerry Garcia, and more, The Woodstock Story Book tells a chronological story of the music festival that became one of Rolling Stone’s 50 Moments That Changed the History of Rock and Roll.  There are over 300 full-color photographs in this book and are accompanied by humorous descriptions of the festival.  Great for those who remember Woodstock, wished they had been there, or are interested in rock and roll history.

For more information, check out The Woodstock Story Book blog.

Thanks to Lisa Roe at Online Publicist for sending me the book to review.