Miami Pop Festival (May 1968)

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 United States of America
  • Uncathegorised
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The Miami Pop Festival is the name by which two unrelated music festivals that took place in 1968 are known. The venue for both was Gulfstream Park, a horse racing track in Hallandale, Florida, just north of Miami. The first occurred May 18–19, 1968, and was promoted by Richard O'Barry and Michael Lang, the latter of whom became famous as one of the four promoters of Woodstock in 1969. Main headliners included The Jimi Hendrix Experience.


The festival

The May event was officially publicized on promotional materials and in radio ads as the "1968 Pop and Underground Festival," and "The 1968 Pop Festival". An estimated 25,000 people attended this event. Bands featured at the festival included The Jimi Hendrix Experience, The Mothers of Invention, Blue Cheer, Chuck Berry, John Lee Hooker, The Crazy World of Arthur Brown, Blues Image, Charles Austin Group, and Evil. The opening act on Saturday was a little-known group called The Package, and the closing act was The Jimi Hendrix Experience. The second part of what was originally scheduled as a two-day event, Sunday's concert was rained out, but there was at least one beneficial result — it inspired Hendrix to write "Rainy Day, Dream Away." Decades later, the festival began to be referred to colloquially as the "Miami Pop Festival", leading to confusion with the actual Miami Pop Festival, which took place in December 1968.


On November 5, 2013, a CD and DVD were released containing the first available audio and film of the Experience at the festival. The CD, The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Miami Pop Festival, contains about an hour of previously unreleased music. The DVD, Jimi Hendrix: Hear My Train A Comin’, features a two-hour documentary on Hendrix’s life, including previously-unseen film of Hendrix and the band at the Miami festival, as well as some extras with additional footage from the festival. The documentary was also broadcast in the US on November 5, 2013, by the Public Broadcasting Service as part of its American Masters series.
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