Woodstock is a legendary rock concert/festival that happened in 1969. It lasted for 3 days and gathered some of the music giants of the time as well as numerous hippies (that was the name for hipsters back then). Almost 500 thousand people at one spot. Three days of love peace and music and all without a major incident if we don’t count in one overdose and one unfortunate teenager who fell asleep in a field and was accidentally run over by a tractor. At least he died in his sleep.
People came to the festival for the music, but also to protest and stand up for their principles. There was no Facebook or Instagram back then for people to post a status or a # about the world sucking. If you wanted change, if you wanted to be heard, you didn’t sit in front of a screen and type. You went out there.
I thought to myself many times: “If I had a time machine, I would go back to that day in 1969 and feel the atmosphere of Woodstock. I would also go back and invest in some bitcoins but now is not the time and place to talk about it.
I got a call from my colleague Volkmar Kuhnle who said: “Why don’t you come to Woodstock in Austria this year?” It’s a four day festival in the open on the last weekend of June at the Ort in Innkreis Community of Upper Austriaeach and it’s been held there each year ever since 2011. “We are expecting 70,000 people to show up. You could write a story on it. After all, you said you owned the most read news portal in the Balkan and that you were a renowned influencer. I’ve got a few VIP passes for you and your crew. You must not miss it.” I didn’t Have the heart to admit lying about being the most read portal but it is true that I am very influential at my local store as well as all of Croatia’s shit holes. I told him I was coming. Normally the tickets are €140. I guess God did not want me to spend my money
I thought of DJ Rea-e Farout right away. She is a great combination of a hippie and a hipster with style. She loves music and travel. The only problem is her being vegeterian but who am I judge herbievores? She was happy like Donald Trump when he realized that his fake hair wouldn’t blunt in the wind. Everything seemed ideal when suddenly the day before our trip, she called and said she had high fever and she had to cancel our trip. I should have known better. Every collision with the vegeterian people in history of was doomed to failure. Just remember Hitler and Stalin.
Who was going to come with me now? I had nearly 24 hours. I wonder who doesn’t have a life? At that moment I thought of my elementary school friend from Dubrava. Tanja Rhodes a.k.a. the Bookkeeper. I called her and she said “If all expenses are covered, I’m going. I guess it wouldn’t hurt for me to be a Gold digger in my old days.”
Eventually I heard back from Volkmar who told me that the trombone player Mario Sincek and his father were going to Austria from Zagreb so we got the free ride. The fantastic four took off to Woodstock. One day they will write Stories about us (hopefully not in the obituary section of the newspaper if we fall asleep under a local tractor).
After a 6 hour ride, we arrived to the Vitalhotel Therme Geinberg hotel. We grabbed a bite and got on the first bus to Woodstock which took place 20 min away from the hotel. Tanja kept asking me about all the famous bands that might perform at the festival. “Is Slash coming?” I did not have the heart to tell her this was actually Woodstock for brass music/instruments lovers. That is why it is called Woodstock der Blasmusik.
Namely, Volkmar works for the Buffet Crampon company which is one of the world’s most famous brass instrument manufactorer. They are partners of the festival and since I play a Keilwerth saxophone, I was honored with the invitation to this brass party.
Bands were playing both traditional and modern brass music, folk or traditional dance music. My family comes from a renown village in Croatia so I know how to appreciate village festivities.
We went to the Buffet Crampon corner straight away where our ears were gently carrassed by Southbrass band.
It’s interesting how all of the visitors took out their own instruments at one point and played together with the band on stage. There were some Vienna philharmonics members there, but also world renown musicians like myself. Crazy!
Tanya politely mentioned my mothers private parts in an upset manner. She also said she had nothing against brass music, but in moderation.
That was when I realized I should have gotten her drunk to relax her. As soon as I mentioned alcohol, a smile came back to her face.
I said to Volkmars colleague that he was free to treat us with a glass of cold spritzer. One glass of spritzer was almost 7 euro and it is a custom that the host treats.
We had a liter and a half each and then we started ordering songs as if we owned the band. Do you know that song from Justin Bieber? Mario couldn’t remember that song so he looked in his songbook.
I didn’t have a dron, but that did not stop me from taking some bird perspective shots. I went all out for these money shots. Adventure on the Wheel cost 6 Euros per person.
Euros at Woodstock go missing like morality in Red district. Just when I was about to buy a round for everyone, Volkmar sacrificed and stoped me.
At one point I met with Simon Ertl, the organizer of the Woodstock der Blasmusik festival. I commended him for organizing similar events in Chernobyl. He asked me to exchange experiences.
We were hit by the sun and alcohol. We decided to go back to the hotel and refresh ourselves at the pool before returning to the festival. Kool & The Gang were performing that night. We couldn’t miss that. #hard life
Interestingly, there was no incident at the festival. There was not even garbage on the floor, a bottle… nothing. Austrian people are very polite. Now someone will say: ”But Hitler was born there?” I didn’t say that.
The Kool and The Ganges were amazing. Ears rest after listening traditional folk music all day 🙂
For all of you who missed this brass summit, you can enjoy this summer at the Brass Palmas Festival on island of Krk in Croatia from 26th to 29th September. Mini version of Woodstock der Blasmusik. There will also be a winter version in the Alps, and next year again a big festival in Austria.
I also had to thank Volkmar for his hospitality, so I gave him a jar of Lino Lada Gold (Croatian Nutella). Sometimes I feel like a bold Santa:)
PS: I mentioned that people came to first Woodstock not only because of the music, but also their beliefs, and to protest against the system. I came to this Woodstock because of music, sausages, spritzer and austrian girls. I no longer have any desire to protest. It is important for me to shoot a good photo for my Facebook and Instagram and to provoke my poor friends who have stayed in Croatia. At the end of the day, I make money from clicks, likes, sheers and new followers. I admit, I’m superficial. Better to be superficial than poor! Hallelujah 🙂
Author: Josip Novosel aka Joe Baba, Vin Diesel for poor people and self proclaimed Dear Leader Joe, a corresponding member of the “Trumpets are for funerals. Take out the accordion” magazine, a friend to the wealthy, a tycoon and a Gastro snob but above all a human.