Woodstock ‘99 documentary: what happened at music festival, lineup, were there deaths, Netflix UK release date

Netflix documentary Trainwreck: Woodstock ‘99 explores why the revived music festival was such a disaster

Trainwreck: Woodstock ‘99 follows the ill-fated music festival that was supposed to emulate the first Woodstock but ended up tarnishing its legacy.

The festival lineup featured many high-profile acts scheduled to play over the four day event to an audience of 400,000.

Woodstock ‘99 was an orgy of violence, sexual assault, and vandalism

Ultimately, the festival was mired in controversy, as the venue was considered to be unsafe and several incidents of violence and death were reported.

A feature-length Netflix documentary looks at what went wrong at the festival and explores its problematic legacy.

What was Woodstock ‘99?

Woodstock ‘99 was a four day festival of rock, punk and hip hop music created to recapture the magic of the original 1969 festival.

It followed Woodstock ‘94, a controversy-free festival which saw an attendance of 350,000.

Woodstock ‘99 was held in Rome, New York, and broadcast on MTV - intended to be a music celebration, the festival went on to be described as ‘the day the music died’.

What was the festival lineup?

The lineup included many well-known acts including DMX, Limp Bizkit, Korn, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Metallica, Rage Against the Machine, and Creed.

Sheryl Crow, James Brown, The Offspring, Insane Clown Posse, Kid Rock, Counting Crows, Alanis Morissette, Ice Cube, Fatboy Slim, Megadeath, and Elvis Costello also performed.

Foo Fighters, Sugar Ray, and Al Green were set to play the festival but pulled out for various reasons.

Limp Bizkit were among the bands performing at the festival

What went wrong at Woodstock ‘99?

An early issue which plagued the festival throughout was the weather - with temperatures reaching 38 degrees.

The site of the festival was a former airstrip, with little or no shade, and because of limited space on grass, many festival goers had to camp on hot asphalt.

Other logistical problems were overpriced food and drink from onsite vendors, and a lack of access to usable toilets and water fountains.

During a Red Hot Chili Peppers set, peace promoters distributed candles for a vigil, but some attendees used them to light bonfires - an audio tower caught fire and the fire brigade were called in to put it out.

Bonfires were lit across the festival

Vendors booths were broken into and looted, and some were used to fuel the bonfires now that had been lit across the site.

Sexual violence also occurred at the festival - six instances of rape were reported to the authorities and some eyewitnesses said that they saw women being gangraped in a mosh pit as Limp Bizkit performed.

How many people died at the festival?

David DeRosia collapsed in a mosh pit during Metallica’s performance and was airlifted to a hospital.

DeRosia was in a coma for two days and died on 26 July, the day after the concert ended. His death was deemed to be as a result of hyperthermia.

A 44-year-old man who had a pre-existing heart condition also died at the site from cardiac arrest.

Additionally, Tara Weaver, a 28 year old woman, was killed when she was hit by a car on her way home from the concert. The incident took place 55 miles from the site.

In total, three deaths have been connected to Woodstock ‘99, the same number as occurred at the first Woodstock festival in 1969.

At least 123 festival goers were treated at Rome Memorial Hospital over the course of the event.

What was the legacy of Woodstock ‘99?

While just as deadly as the first Woodstock festival, Woodstock ‘99 was remembered as catastrophe of violence, sexual assault, unsafe conditions, and exploitative vendors.

San Francisco Examiner journalist Jane Ganahl said of the festival that it was “the day the music died.”

Another Woodstock festival has not taken place since ‘99 - Woodstock 50 which was due to take place in 2019 was cancelled after a series of permit and production issues and artist cancellations.

When is Trainwreck: Woodstock ‘99 on Netflix?

The feature-length documentary will land on Netflix on Wednesday 3 August.

Is there a trailer?

Yes there is, and you can watch it right here: