The 1969 Seattle Pop Festival: The unexpected crossover between the late 1960’s Psychedelic and Acid Rock scene with the upcoming 1970’s Hard Rock

For $15 only you could watch a stunning parade of legendary acts all on the same three day bill including The Doors, Led Zeppelin, Alice Cooper and Santana among many others

The 1969 Seattle Pop Festival: The unexpected crossover between the late 1960’s Psychedelic and Acid Rock scene with the upcoming 1970’s Hard Rock

It’s a music history fact that the 1960’s were prodigal in open air Rock and Pop festivals, some of the most legendary ones took place between 1967 and 1969, Monterey Pop Festival or Woodstock among the most famous ones. Between July 25 and 27, 1969, just weeks before Woodstock took place, Rock headed to the U.S northwest, to the location where a couple decades later another Rock revolution would took place, Seattle, Washington.

For three days, and for $15 only you could watch acts like The Byrds, Tim Buckley, Chuck Berry, The Doors, Alice Copper, Led Zeppelin and Ike & Tina Turner among several others live at the Seattle Pop Festival, in Gold Creek Park, Woodinville, Washington This festival, it’s notorious to crossover the late 1960’s Rock scene with the future 1970’s Hard Rock scene, by featuring bands such as The Byrds and The Doors and then Alice Cooper and Led Zeppelin. Headlining one of the days in the festival were indeed The Doors, performing in the aftermath of their infamous Miami concert that had just taken place earlier that year. According to Led Zeppelin frontman Robert Plant, who was playing with Zeppelin the same night as The Doors, one of the acts the then fresh band and future rulers of the 1970’s were looking forward to watch the most was The Doors, but as he stated, was extremely disappointed, as watching the concert on the side of the stage, observed a worn out Jim Morrison who couldn’t barely get himself together on stage and it was expected by a band that was headlining more than that. Led Zeppelin end up being the best live act that day, surprising a big part of the audience who had never heard about the then new British Rock band. In a way, it is symbolic of how things were changing fast in 1969 in music, and less than a year later, the Hard Rock/Heavy Metal of Led Zeppelin, Alice Cooper and Black Sabbath was taking over Psychedelic, Acid and Folk Rock. The total attendance over the three days exceeded 50,000 people, which was larger than expected. Curiously, also playing the festival was Spirit, the band that took Led Zeppelin to the courts claiming their rights to the “Stairway To Heaven” guitar intro, and by then, Spirit already had released “Taurus”, the song that reportedly Led Zeppelin got “inspiration” from. Overall, among the total of 26 bands and musicians that performed at the 1969 Seattle Pop Festival were Chuck Berry, Tim Buckley, The Byrds, Albert Collins, Bo Diddley, The Doors, The Flock, The Flying Burrito Brothers, The Guess Who, Led Zeppelin, Lonnie Mack, Lee Michaels, Rockin Fu, Santana, Spirit, Ten Years After, Ike & Tina Turner, Vanilla Fudge, Alice Cooper and The Youngbloods. A few months later, the Peace and Love generation would get the final stab that caused “their” already announced death, when the Rolling Stones jumped on the Rock festivals band wagon and organized their infamous 1969 Altamont Festival that resulted in riots and deaths in the audience. It was the end of an era.

There isn’t much surviving footage or audio from the 1969 Seattle Pop Festival, bellow you can watch a very rare and raw silent footage of The Doors on stage and two audio clips from the show, performing “Someday Soon” and “When The Music’s Over”. As for Led Zeppelin, in lack of footage and audio from this festival you can watch some of the performance they gave just a few weeks later live at Texas International Pop Festival.

Watch some raw and rare silent footage of The Doors on stage at the 1969 Seattle Pop Festival

Listen to The Doors performing “Someday Soon” live at the 1969 Seattle Pop Festival

Listen to The Doors performing “When The Music’s Over” live at the 1969 Seattle Pop Festival

Watch rare footage of Led Zeppelin live at the Texas International Pop Festival, August 1969, just a few weeks after Seattle Pop Festival

Watch more 1960’s related videos


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