Thursday, September 10, 2009

Toledo Pop Festival-This Week In Toledo, Ohio, 1969:

So Happy Together!  
Sunday, September 14th 1969
Four short weeks after Jimi Hendrix closed the generation-defining Woodstock Festival with a soul-stirring, whammy-bar laden performance of the Star Bangled Banner, Toledo fans got a homegrown opportunity to air out their freak flags courtesy of the daylong Toledo Pop Festival.Culled primarily from the S.E. Michigan/N.W. Ohio axis of high-energy rock'n'roll, the day's slightly disparate line-up featured a virtual who's who of Rust Belt axe-slingers: Brothers Wayne Kramer and the late-great Fred "Sonic" Smith from the MC5; Ted Nugent from the Amboy Dukes; The Frost's Dick Wagner, who would later go on to co-write, record, and tour extensively with the likes of Alice Cooper and Lou Reed, among others; Ron Koss of Savage Grace; Gary Quackenbush of SRC; Steve Correll of The Rationals; and, the soon-to-be-known-as “Leather Tuscadero” in the persona of one Miss Suzi Quatro, performing bass, vocal and jail-bait duties for the Pleasure Seekers, a band consisting chiefly of her brothers and sisters.

PDGB wonders if the concert promoter’s somewhat curious decision to place feel-good hit-makers The Turtles atop a bill filled largely with outfits known for their aggressive, potentially incendiary histrionics was -at least in part- a conscious decision intended to serve as a musical blow-off valve, The Turtles cheery melodies and infectious lyrics helping to ease the attendees transition from frenzied jam kick-outing to the parking lot slough that awaited them. Then again, maybe they just needed a big name to sell some tickets.

Either way, we’re sure the inevitable twenty minute-plus live rendition of “Happy Together” didn’t go unnoticed, reshuffling the synapses of numerous first-time psychedelic users so completely that even now, some forty-years later, the simple act of hearing said melody errantly whistled by passerby is capable of triggering intense psychotic episodes of such severity that even immediate medical attention followed by years of therapy can't guarantee the return of normal brain activity. Way to go Boomers!
Held at Toledo Raceway Park (which we assume is the Horse racing facility of approximately the same name that still stands in North Toledo today) the $5.00 admission ($4.25 Advance) was an unbelievable bargain, even adjusted for inflation.
If you attended the Toledo Pop Festival and have a recollection you'd like to share about it -or any like event/concert/happening in the N.W. Ohio/S.W. Michigan region- click that comment button and tell it!


Neil holt said...

I was one of the promoters of this event and have been searching for the show poster. Where're can I get one
Neil holt

Toke! said...

Man I wish I knew. I found this pic on the interwebs. One used to hang in Pete and TJ's music in Maumee, but that place has long since closed.

I would love to hear any interesting antidotes or recollections you have of the event. Maybe in time for this years anniversary of the event? Contact me here.

Anonymous said...

An exact replica of the is poster is for sale on Ebay.

Christopher Sobieniak said...

Held at Toledo Raceway Park (which we assume is the Horse racing facility of approximately the same name that still stands in North Toledo today).

Not anymore, not since Penn National got its hands on it and torn it down because it was interfering with it's casino down the river. I'm only impressed Walmart hadn't claimed that open space at all.

And from the looks of it, it's going to be another warehouse/distribution center.

Anonymous said...

I remember Alice Cooper's big finale included breaking open a feather pillow and spraying the audience with a fire extinguisher, real high end theatrics!