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ISO: Seattle Pop Fest. July '69 photos?


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Hey all...

Has anyone seen, have or know of photos from the '69 Seattle Pop Fest? (professional or amateur) I'm trying to track down photos of some other acts from the Festival as well, no luck. Anyone know the names of any photographers shooting that Festival? Any help would be appreciated. Please PM me if you have any leads.



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Hey all...

Has anyone seen, have or know of photos from the '69 Seattle Pop Fest? (professional or amateur) I'm trying to track down photos of some other acts from the Festival as well, no luck. Anyone know the names of any photographers shooting that Festival? Any help would be appreciated. Please PM me if you have any leads.




I've been looking for AGES for ANY photos of the 1969 Seattle Pop Festival and this is the sole photo I've ever been able to dig up:


This photo is allegedly from the 1969 Seattle Pop Festival, but it would be nice to have some corroboration with other photos. It's hard to believe that there aren't more photos of this historic festival out there. Zeppelin and The Doors on the same bill, among many other national acts, and no photos to be found. Weird...

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The Doors at the Seattle Pop Festival, 1969

Author Unknown

Something has happened to the Doors. Ray Manzarek knows it, several thousand people who attended the Seattle Pop Festival know, and probably so does Jim Morrison.

Once one of the vital influences in rock, the Doors apparently have been captured entirely by the ego-tripping of Morrison. Instead of giving the audiences the music that turned us all on a couple of years back, the Doors now come on like some kind of carnival sideshow, with Morrison as the geek out front.

I'm not sure what I expected of Morrison and the Doors at the Seattle Pop Festival, but I hadn't seen them perform in more than a year and was as curious as anyone' about the changes they were said to have gone through.

The tension there was high. Only a chickenwire fence separated the stage -and us - from 40,000 rock fans, fronted by a phalanx of screaming teenyboppers who had come out from Seattle for the day just to see Morrison. Black Panthers recruited by promoter Boyd Grafmyre patrolled along the fence, politely asking the jammed-in kids not to crash the stage.

Vanilla Fudge was just finishing its set - a fine series of songs from their new album "Rock 'n Roll". It was the first time I had heard the group live and their performance belied their commercial reputation as they played some of the best rock of the weekend. An unappreciative knot of kids in front of the stage, though, hooted and screamed out for the Doors.

The Fudge finished its set and started to leave the stage, but was called back for an encore. More boos came from the people pressed against the retaining fence, but this time the derision was drowned out by the applause of older hands who recognized the group's new direction.

When Fudge closed out its extended set with a rollicking, spirited version of "Shotgun," even the wall of squirming kids gave them a well-deserved hand.

Then the tension built higher. The chants started in front, then spread through the biggest rock audience ever gathered in the Pacific Northwest. "We want Morrison." "We want the Doors." "We want Morrison." Empty wine bottles and garbage cans were converted to drums which accompanied the hollow chant. Those of us in the press area felt the animal presence revealed in the primitive rhythm of the chanting audience. For the first time, we seriously began discussing an escape route in case the crowd should rush the stage.

Manzarek walked first onto the darkened stage. As he struck a single note on his keyboard the chants stopped. The crowd was waiting in silent anticipation. Few realized that Morrison, dressed in denim work coat and wearing a full beard, had been on and off the stage several times.

As John Densmore tested his drums the crowd tensed again, still waiting for the harsh-throated singer they thought they would recognize from their album covers. Then came Morrison.

Looking old and a little wild he walked to his microphone, lovingly stroked his black mustache, smiled evilly at the 14year-old girls behind me, and laughed. "This is where it's at, now," he said, still running his hands through his beard When he opened with "When the 'Music's Over," Morrison sounded almost like the singer he used to be. As the song continued, however, so did his crude asides. When he was through someone tossed a crumpled cup at him. Morrison gave his unseen assailant the finger. The crowd dug it.

The Doors ran through an obligatory five minutes of "Light My Fire," a song Morrison told an interviewer earlier this year he wouldn't perform again in public. "It stinks. We're beyond that now." He had said. His performance of the song, only a ghost of the recorded version, indicated he probably does think it stinks - and that's the way he sang it. More than anything else, Morrison's attitude dominated the stage throughout the show. Puffing on a cigar borrowed from a stagehand, he continued on his uninterrupted ego trip, all the while abusing, insulting and ridiculing his audience. It was apparent that this wasn't the Morrison the young chicks had come to see.

The tension on the fence behind me relaxed, and we no longer feared the teenyboppers would try to crash the stage. They didn't want him that bad. "I read in the paper that some shrink says people like me who perform on stage are crazy," Morrison was shouting. "I read that they didn't get enough love when they were kids ... I didn't get enough love."

It was a personal ego thing. He combed his fingers through his long beard, then ran his hands down his chest and along his legs. "He's got a hard on," the chick behind me whispered. It looked as if she was right. So Morrison turned himself on in front of 40,000 people. But he still wasn't making music -only speeches.

Someone out front made an audible remark. Morrison latched onto it, called the person a big-mouthed bastard, dared him to repeat it. "Get it all out. All the little hatreds, everything that's boiled up inside you. Let me have it," he commanded.

"Fuck you," the crowd- screamed. "That's the word I wanted to hear. That's the very little word," Morrison told them. A quiet voice from the audience said "Shuck!" Morrison laughed.

Speeches done, the band went into "Five to One." But the audience no longer was willing to follow Morrison. Obviously not getting the response he was after in his bubblegum revolution song. He grabbed a maraca and pretended to beat off. He hugged the guitarist Robby Krieger and made faces at the teenage chicks. Manzarek shook his head. It was hard to tell if he was keeping time with the music or thinking about Morrison.

The set ended with the Doors' traditional "This is the End." A sparkler flew from the crowd and bounced off the light show screen, as stagehands rushed to extinguish it. Morrison never noticed. He had digressed from the recognized version of his song and was parodying the old Negro blues singers.

"I’se an old blues man. I’se an old blues man, getting anything I can," he sang.

Then he slipped back into "The End," moving toward the Oedipal climax where he would say "Mother, I want to –." Only the song didn't stop there. "I wanna make love, sweet, sweet love to you all night long," he sang on.

Then the set was over. Manzarek switched off the recorded bass accompaniment and left the stage. Krieger and Densmore followed. Morrison hung there, very still, bathed in a red flood, with head drooped, eyes closed and arms outstretched - Christ on the cross. After the performance he gave, it was difficult to accept his crucifixion gesture without feeling that he was doing it to himself.

I waited for him as he left the stage, flanked by several newsmen and some of his staff. "It's going to be all night," he was saying over and over. The groupies just lined the stage stairs and watched as Morrison climbed into his chartered helicopter and was lifted into the sky - a continuance, though unintellectual, of his Christ pose.

Boyd Grafmyre turned to me "That's a quick way for him to make $30,000," he said.

Back on stage Led Zeppelin was making an attentive audience forget the proceeding act, just as they had, forgotten the others when the Doors came on stage.

But Jim Morrison is in no danger of being out of work, unless he loses Manzarek or Krieger or decides to do a Joplin on his own. All he has to do is show his ass on stage in an uptight town, get arrested and become a cult hero to millions of teenyboppers who don't seem to mind being insulted and laughed at. But some of us still like music, Jim.

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Seattle Pop Festival held in Woodinville on July 25, 1969

On July 25, 1969, Boyd Grafmyre stages the Seattle Pop Festival, held at Gold Creek Park in Woodinville, northeast of Seattle. Over the next three days, 25 musicians and groups perform, including Chuck Berry, Black Snake, Tim Buckley, The Byrds, Chicago Transit Authority, Albert Collins, Crome Syrcus, Bo Diddley, the Doors, Floating Bridge, The Flock, The Flying Burrito Brothers, Guess Who, It's A Beautiful Day, Led Zeppelin, Charles Loyd, Lonnie Mack, Lee Michaels, Rockin Fu, Murray Roman, Santana, Spirit, Ten Years After, Ike & Tina Turner, Vanilla Fudge, and the Youngbloods.

Tickets for the event went for $6 a day or $15 for all three. More than 50,000 rock fans attended over the three days. Since crowds were larger than expected, extra water and food had to be hauled in on Sunday. Sanitary facilities were inadequate, but every attempt was made to meet county requirements.

Nearby neighbors complained of traffic and the hippie atmosphere, but Chick Dawsey, owner of Gold Creek, noted that spectators were orderly with very few exceptions.

"I disagree with their movement 100 per cent," said Dawsey, "but some of us adults better get the hell closer to them. They respond very much to kindness, we older people better learn this -- If they need a drink of water we, the establishment, should go out and offer it."


Walt Crowley, Rites of Passage: A Memoir of the Sixties in Seattle (Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1995), 268, 334; "Pop Festival Set for Gold Creek," East Side Journal, July 2, 1969, p. 10; "50,000 Drawn to Gold Creek Rock Festival," East Side Journal, July 30, 1969, p. 10. By Alan J. Stein, June 06, 1999

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Interview with Bo Diddley

by Mike Quiqley http://www.mjq.net/


This interview was conducted during the Seattle Pop Festival, held at Gold Creek Park in Woodinville, northeast of Seattle in July of 1969 where twenty-five musicians and groups performed over three days. Myself and a photographer named Vlad from the Vancouver Province managed to convince the conservative management of the paper that this event needed covering. We slept in Vlad's Renault in the parking lot (not very well) and soaked up the atmosphere. Some of the questions in this interview suggest that the wiltering heat was getting to me.



MQ: I was wondering, how do you like the pop festival so far?

BD: Beautiful, beautiful … yeah.

MQ: What do you play now mainly, mostly pop festivals?

BD: No, this is the first one I’ve done in a long time, yeah, and I hope to get in on a few more.

MQ: What do you do otherwise, nightclubs, or big concerts, or what?

BD: Yeah, that’s what I’ve been doing … nightclubs and things around the Los Angeles area when I’m out here. I still live in Chicago. I be out in Los Angeles quite frequently because I have people out there. While I’m out there I used to work a little bit, but I think I be making a little noise on this end.

MQ: How much of your time has been making records now? How many records do you have?

BD: I think I have twenty-seven albums. I don’t know how many singles.

MQ: I imagine quite a lot of your time is spent in recording, is it?

BD: Right.

MQ: Cool.

[bo whispers to someone “Get me a hamburger.”]

MQ: The one thing that really got me is the way you turn the crowd on so much … has it always been like this?

BD: Yes … I don’t know, I’ve been doing the same thing for 16 years now. And it’s seemed to be … it’s me … originality … and I’m glad I’ve got something that the people dug and it caught on. So it really made me feel good, you know … so … it really made me feel good, as an entertainer to know that … to know that people appreciated me so much and in return the only thing I can do is appreciate them and try to do my best to keep them supplied with my musical knowledge, you might say.

MQ: When you started fifteen years ago, what was the audience reaction like then?

BD: About the same … primarily, the same thing.

MQ: Were you doing rock concerts?

BD: I was doing a lot of college things.

MQ: You seem to have this really elemental thing, and it really gets to them. What do you think of that?

BD: Well, that’s good too, but it … I don’t know, I think I was a few years ahead of time, about roughly 10 years ahead of my time. Because now everybody the music that people used to talk about and call it “jungle music,” today everyone is copying me.

MQ: Do you think they’re going back? Groups are going back?

BD: Yes, they are.

MQ: Like a lot of groups seem to be getting back to the sort of thing you’re doing … it’s really cool.

BD: I like it, because, man, it’s a gas. This is my … I’ve made this my aim in life, to be an entertainer, so this is what’s happening

MQ: The music is really what turns them on … there’s so many people smiling and doing things that weren’t before you came on, like yesterday especially, they really got turned on.

BD: Well, I had them all standing yesterday … this made me feel good, because it’s a … music has … come out of the stiff collar bay [?] … and into the good feeling … you know, the good part of it

MQ: You just feel it …

BD: In other words … you don’t have to be all dressed to go on. You just go on stage and do your thing.


MQ: What’s your message, Bo?

BD: Well, I really don’t have one, I hope people just keep doin’ their thing…

MQ: Like we could maybe say your message is the music. That’s what really got to me.

BD: Yeah, you could say that.

MQ: What was that you said yesterday, that you really got through to the people, what you said, do you remember? It was when you were talking about your life…

BD: I said that they needed somebody on their side, I wanted them to remember one thing: I was in their corner 100 percent, because it’s groovy when you take a cat my age that thinks about the kids and thinks of the life they are trying to live. And like you only have one short life, and like I used the term “a short time here and a long time gone.” And the reason why you can be assured that you are a long time gone, all of the the heroes that have died in our lifetime, none of them have come back and said, “Hey, I’m George Washington, man … you know … I’m Abraham Lincoln.” They’re gone and that’s it. And sixty or seventy years or eighty years is no long time. So this is what I meant. So you only have a short time here so you might as well enjoy yourself, and this is it. See, the old folks used to didn’t enjoy themselves, everybody was too worried about what the other person was gonna say…

MQ: Yeah, everybody was up tight.

BD: Yeah, and I don’t think this is right. If you don’t pay my bills and walk the floor with my kids when they’re hungry or sick or something, then don’t tell me how to live. Understand? That’s the way I look at it. When you are together, then you help one another this way. When you’re not together, then it’s very easy to walk past the person who’s dying and say “Oh, let him die, he deserves it.” Or something like this. This crowd out here, today’s youth, don’t think this way, and I don’t think that the older folks dig it. Because it’s too much right. They don’t fight and cut up one another. The only time you hear of any problems is when you have the law in force come in and bickerin’ and hitting people and knocking them around with sticks. And see … and you stop to think if an officer hits you with a stick, you tell him … you search his mind and see if he would like somebody to take a stick and hit him upside the head …regardless of the job that he is doing. Just see if he would like to be hit upside the head. If he tells you yes, then get your stick, and try to knock his head off. This is the way I look at it … because we need law enforcement, we need law and order, but we don’t need a bunch of heathens, a bunch of thugs -- should I say -- with a license … do you understand? We don’t need that. Not in America. In Germany, in Japan, where they’ve been preaching this stuff for years and years and years, maybe the people are brainwashed to this type of thing. But not in America. America don’t stand for that type of stuff. That’s not what I was taught in school. I was taught something else in school and when I get grown I see something else different. And this makes me wonder, is there an Iron Curtain here that we don’t realize, dressed up in all pretty things, you know, but it’s there? It’s like a brick wall behind a white sheet. You think you gonna run through the sheet, and you run into the sheet and run into a brick wall. Do you dig what I’m sayin’?

MQ: How does your music come into all this?


MQ: How does your music fit into this, Bo?

BD: My music doesn’t really fit in it, because I play … the songs that I sing are the truth. I tell the truth in a lot of songs that I sing. It’s no made up thing. A lot of the things I sing about I know about ‘em, or they once happened. Either they happened when I was a kid, or either … something recently happened. I sit down and hear people talkin’, and I pick up a couple of words they’re saying and I’m listenin’ at ‘em, and I write a whole tune from them.

[Tape fades out.]

MQ: [i think I was asking him about what he thought of other musicians.] Do you think that they do their own thing …

BD: That’s one thing I don’t do. If they’re good, I say they’re good, if they’re not good, I tell them, “Man, you know, like … you’ll make it, or something,” you know … but I don’t usually even say that much. I usually just don’t give any comment at all. And therefore I’m not jeopardizing myself that I said such-and-such a thing [that he] is no good … I don’t believe in it. I don’t brag, that’s one thing I been .. I suppose tell them all the time in my group. They’ll say … someone starts to say something like “Wow, we showed it up.”

Unidentified Woman: Who said that? You don’t hear me sayin’ that! You’ll hear your bass player and drummer sayin’ that!

BD: I used to be a fighter, and anytime I would get up and look like … and start showin’ off … or something like that, I would get whipped. I would be in the dressing room, “Oh, come on, I can do him in,” and I would go out there and get clobbered. So I learned one thing, and I learned this from Joe Louis. Joe Louis never said anything concerning a fighter except “I’ll do my best.” I tried to figure out why, because I was just a youngster. And I picked up this thing, you know, don’t say nothin’, because I’m gonna be in there tryin’, that’s all he used to say. And so I learned the same thing When I go on the stage up there, I don’t try to outdo nobody, I do what I know how to and that’s all. The only time I don’t do nothin’ is I’m probably not feelin’ too good, or something like that you get those days when you try and you can’t get goin’ … you know … be like an old raggedy car.

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