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Woodstock 50 Festival Moves to Maryland in Bid to Salvage Event

By

Lucas Shaw

July 25, 2019, 1:16 PM EDT

The organizers of the Woodstock 50th anniversary festival are relocating the concert to Maryland from upstate New York, a change they say will salvage the troubled event.

The festival is now slated to take place Aug. 16 through Aug. 18 at Merriweather Post Pavilion, an outdoor amphitheater in Columbia, Maryland, according to documents obtained by Bloomberg. The venueshould be able to accommodate about 32,000 people.

Organizers of Woodstock 50 have been scrambling to save the festival after their main financier backed out and local officials in upstate New York refused to approve a permit. Attempts to move it to different spots in the state — home of the original 1969 concert — failed.

“When we heard that there was an opportunity to save this festival and bring a piece of American history to our community this summer, we jumped at the chance,” Calvin Ball, an executive with Howard County, wrote in a note to Greg Peck, one of the organizers. “Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia is a jewel of Howard County and one of the top music venues in the nation. It felt like such a natural fit to host a historic festival on our storied stage.”

The plan still faces challenges. The original lineup included Jay-Z, Miley Cyrus and Halsey, but some artists might back out given the new venue is more than 250 miles from the original location. The Merriweather Post Pavilion also is a smaller venue than what was originally promised. Organizers are now holding conversations with artists and their representatives about the new plan.

Benefit Concert

Woodstock is now being pitched as a fundraiser for nonprofits devoted to voter turnout and climate change. Some of the proceeds from ticket sales will go to HeadCount, which works on voter registration, and other causes. Organizers are hoping to also raise money via a livestream of the event. They’re pitching the concert as “Woodstock 50 Washington,” a nod to its new location near the nation’s capital.

Organizers aim to charge $129 to $595 for one-day passes to the event, according to current plans. And they’ve circulated a marketing plan that includes emails to more than 800,000 people, billboards across Washington, Maryland and Northern Virginia, and a full-page ad in local newspapers.

The original festival attracted hundreds of thousands of people to a dairy farm in Bethel, New York. A who’s who of rock stars performed, including the Grateful Dead, Janis Joplin, the Who and Jimi Hendrix. A logistical disaster, it became synonymous with the hippie movement.

 

Fans furious after Confederate Railroad dropped from state fair lineup: ‘This political correctness thing is totally out of control’

Fans of the country rock group Confederate Railroad are outraged after the band was dropped from the lineup at an Illinois state fair.

The band was slated to perform at the Du Quoin State Fair in Du Quoin, Ill. on Aug. 27 for “90s Country Reloaded Day,” but have since been removed from the fair lineup. While it is not immediately clear what the rationale behind the change was, some believe the decision was made because the band’s name was deemed inappropriate.

Fellow country artists Charlie Daniels and Joe Bonsall, a member of the Oak Ridge Boys, took to Twitter to speak out about how “political correctness” is “out of control,” and how it’s unfair to cancel a group of talented artists because of their band’s name.

Fans echoed the same thoughts on social media, emphasizing how people need to focus on the music and not whether people will be offended.

“Confederate Railroad plays some very good music! I’m so disgusted with all this politically correct nonsense. I don’t care what one does, someone wont like it and possibly be offended by it,” one person wrote. “That’s life. Whoever’s offended needs to put on their big kid pants and move on.”

Another supporter pointed out that the band is more than a name. “This is horrible! These guys have done SO much for charity and have been amazing people since the beginning! I could care less your political affiliations…these guys are some of the most genuine in country music!” the comment reads.

However, it’s uncertain if Confederate Railroad was actually pulled from the fair because of its name.

The Du Quoin State Fairgrounds is owned and operated by the state. Illinois Department of Agriculture public information officer Krista Lisser confirms to Yahoo Lifestyle that Confederate Railroad was removed from the 2019 Du Quoin State Fair grandstand lineup.

She declined to clarify the reasoning or provide additional information behind the move.

“While every artist has a right to expression, we believe this decision is in the best interest of serving all the people of our state,” Lisser says.

WSIL-TV reported the band’s removal may have been influenced by Rich Miller, who publishes Capitol Fax, a local Illinois political website and newsletter. In a June 17 post, Miller asked readers whether they believe the band is an appropriate choice for the fair.

“A band named Confederate Railroad. In Illinois. The Land of Lincoln. Playing at a state-owned facility,” his post reads. “I’ve never heard anyone claim that the group has Confederacy-loving song lyrics or anything. It’s just… well… Allow me to turn this one over to you…”

His audience responded —and one person wrote that if the band plays good music, there’s no reason to focus on its name.

“If they have a good track record why not. Name will probably have to be changed sooner or later though,” a comment reads.

“It’s a band, not a Confederate statue. Let them play,” another added.

Boz Scaggs Postpones Tour Due to Health Reasons

Singer, songwriter and guitarist Boz Scaggs announced today (June 22) that he had postponed the current leg of his Out of the Blues tour due to health reasons. The beloved blue-eyed soul singer noted: “I am going to follow doctors orders so I can get back out on the road as soon as possible.”

Scaggs was scheduled to perform dozens of 2019 concerts in support of his album, Out of the Blues, released July 27, 2018, via Concord Records. The album was produced by Scaggs and includes vintage classics and originals.

Here’s the complete post on Scaggs’ Facebook page:

It is with deep regret that we announce the postponement of the current leg of Boz’s Out Of The Blues Tour due to health reasons. Boz has been advised by his doctors that he cannot tour at this time. With some rest he is expected to make a full and swift recovery.
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“I am so sorry to have to miss these shows,” the announcement quoted Scaggs. “Playing for you all is my greatest joy. I hate to disappoint you. I am going to follow doctors orders so I can get back out on the road as soon as possible. Looking forward to seeing you all then.”
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The post continued: This announcement effects our tour dates from June 21st through July 9th. We are already working on rescheduling as many shows as we can and we will get back to you all as quickly as we can. Ticket buyers who would like to request a refund to a show affected by this announcement can do so at your original point of purchase. We apologize to all the fans for this inconvenience.
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It closed: Thank you all for your concern and understanding. With a little time to heal, Boz will be back.

 

 

Cardi B Cancels Baltimore Concert

Grammy-winning — and oftentimes colorful — rapper Cardi B won’t be coming to Baltimore on Friday as the headliner of 92Q’s Spring Bling Festival at Royal Farms Arena.
92Q confirmed through social media that the event would be postponed and rescheduled to Sept. 8.
Royal Farms Arena issued a news release Tuesday morning saying that the concert was postponed because of “circumstances beyond her control.” All tickets are transferable for the new date. Ticket refunds can be obtained at the original point of purchase, according to the venue.
TMZ broke the news of her cancellation. The site, attributing a source close to the rapper said that she canceled because of complications due to plastic surgery.
Representatives for Cardi B at Atlantic Records did not immediately respond to a request for comment Tuesday.
In a video (which contains profanity) from the Beale Street Music Festival in Memphis, Tenn., Cardi B mentioned her recent cosmetic surgery.
Originally from New York, the female rapper was a cast member of the VH1 show “Love & Hip Hop” and has released a slew of hits such as “Bodak Yellow,” “Money,” and “I Like It.” The performer’s usually active Instagram account has been silent since yesterday when she teased to a new music video for her single “Wish Wish.”
Cardi B has often found herself amid controversy and turmoil. At last year’s Harper’s Bazaar’s ICONS party at the Plaza Hotel during New York Fashion Week, she was involved in a physical altercation with rival rapper Nicki Minaj. Cardi B has worn clothes designed by Annapolis native Christian Siriano but did not attend his show days later.