Why John Lennon Couldn't Play at Woodstock: 'Our Government Was Not Interested in Having Him'

Tuesday, January 11, 2022

Unfortunately, John Lennon did not perform at Woodstock Music and Arts Festival. The festival’s co-creator, Michael Lang, died on Jan. 8. The famous music festival was the crowning jewel of Lang’s career in the music industry. However, it wasn’t without its hiccups. Among other issues, Lang had a problem getting some of the acts he wanted to perform during the three-day festival, including John.

However, The Beatles, who were breaking up at the time, and the U.S. government barred John from performing.

In 1969, The Beatles were on the brink of breaking up. By then, each of the Fab Four thought about leaving at some point or another. We recently saw what happened when George Harrison briefly quit the group in Peter Jackson’s new three-part documentary, The Beatles: Get Back.

So, when Lang was getting the lineup for Woodstock together at the time, it was doubtful that he’d be able to get one of the biggest bands in the world as they were on the outs with each other.



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