The Seattle Pop Festival 1969

The Seattle Pop Festival 1969
Authored By Johnny Blogger

Also in 1969, The Seattle Pop Festival was held 25-27 July at Gold Creek Park, Woodenville, Washington. It was $6 for one day, $15 for all three. Bands playing included 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, The Guess Who, It's A Beautiful Day, Led Zeppelin, Charles Lloyd, Lonnie Mack, Lee Michaels, Murray Roman, Santana, Spirit, Ten Years After, Ike & Tina Turner, Vanilla Fudge and the Youngbloods. Not bad eh!

70,000 attended and it was promoted by Boyd Grafmyre, who had previously worked with the New American Community at the successful and highly groovy not-for-profit Sky River Festival in '68, also in Washington.

This was one of the first not to use any regular or off-duty Police officers as security. He brought in 150 youth volunteers from Seattle's Head Start programme. They were ticket collectors, maintenance and security.

The whole weekend ran so smoothly that Grafmyre grossed over $300,000 in return for $200,000 spent. This hugely profitable success proved that if you did it right festivals could make you a lot of money.

Chick Dawsey, who owned Gold Greek , was pleasantly surprised by the fans who turned up.

"I disagree with their movement 100 per cent," he said. "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."

Hey that sounds like a straight dude getting with the programme to me. Cool.

Of the bands that played, naturally Zep were brilliant as the soundboard bootleg that has been available for decades proves. Santana, who were to be a big hit at Woodstock the following month, were also widely acclaimed.

While there were problems with sanitary issues and water supplies, this was still a well-run, peaceful, very cool festival. Not bad for $15 certainly

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