Most of the entries in the Favorite Concerts page are classical music concerts, but last night at The Mountain Laurel Center in the Pocono Mountains was another kind of"classical" music. After a hike through some of the 1,267 trail steps at Bushkill Falls and a short dinner, it was time to join in with a few thousand others at HippieFest 2006 at The Mountain Laurel Center in the Pocono Mountains. The four-hour non-stop concert master of ceremonies was none other than Wavy Gravy. The HippieFest was a real trip down memory lane starring Mitch Ryder, Rare Earth, Country Joe McDonald, Felix Cavaliere’s Rascals, The Lovin’ Spoonful, Mountain with Leslie West and Corky Laing, Badfinger with Joey Molland, Melanie, Canned Heat, and Denny Laine. I hope you enjoy the links! The music was great (although ear plugs required).
The origins and goals of hippie (and now neo-hippie) are debated but most would agree that it involved rebellious youths and rock and roll music. HippieFest was billed as "a return to the flowery, phantasmagorical days of the 1960s. The audience was of mixed age but definitely many that were north of 50. Some remembered their love beads and headgear. Many were reliving their past. Can’t say that I ever qualified as a hippie but I fondly remembered most of the music.
Watching these performing groups on stage was inspiring. A little arithmetic can quickly show that most of the performers were 60+ and some may have been 70+. Some looked it, some did not. All of them had great energy, voices and rhythm. If you look at their concert schedules on the web sites you can see that they are performing almost constantly — one group claimed 208 concerts last year. Why are they doing this? Why don’t they stop and retire? It is possible some lived past their means or had not invested in their future during the hay days and now need the money. Others may do it out of loyalty to other members of their group. Some may not know what else to do. Most however, are probably doing it because they love it. You could see the sparkle in their eyes and the spring in their step. As the audience raved, the performers were inspired, and the cycle continued. It was a great night.