Rolling Stones - Altamont Raceway 1969 Concert Print

22"x14" Concert Print Poster

The hippie dream died on December 6, 1969, only four months after the first Woodstock. Rolling Stone Magazine called it “Rock & Roll’s all-time worst day. The Altamont Raceway concert was the brain-child of the Rolling Stones, who sought to create a free tour-topping show of epic proportions. But due to poor planning, much of the show was improvised just days before the scheduled event. Less than a week before the event, they picked the raceway as the venue and “hired” the soon-to-be infamous bike gang Hell’s Angels as security, paying them in more beer than they could drink. The event quickly fell apart as violence and criminal activity in and around the event grew. Even the Grateful Dead bailed after seeing how badly the show was going. People were robbed, cars were hijacked, and Jefferson Airplane’s vocalist Marty Balin was knocked unconscious by a biker while trying to stop a fight during their set. Two people died from hit-and-run accidents, another from an LSD-induced drowning and the most famous was the slaying of Meredith Hunter. He was an 18-year-old angry, high on drugs and pissed off at the wrong biker gang. Three songs into the Rolling Stones’ set, a fight broke out, ending in Hunter drawing a revolver on Hell’s Angels before another biker named Alan Passaro stabbed him to death 20ft from the stage. The band was completely unaware that the conflict was anything more than a scuffle and continued playing out of fear of creating a total riot if they didn’t.

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