This summer marks the 50th anniversary of the most important music festival in rock history: the 1967 Monterey International Pop Music Festival. Though the legendary Woodstock seems to get the lion’s share of attention in revisionist pop culture, the three-day Monterey Pop festival was the springboard for many acts that are now considered part of the classic rock canon. Big Brother and the Holding Company, featuring powerhouse belter Janis Joplin, got signed to Columbia based on their performance at Monterey, and the Who stunned their largest American audience to that point with a guitar-smashing finale. Not to be outdone, Jimi Hendrix, virtually unknown outside of the U.K. at the time, created a sonic barrage with his guitar that blew the eardrums and minds of the nascent hippies assembled – and famously ended his set by lighting his guitar on fire during a performance of “Wild Thing,” a song that used to belong to the Troggs. Luckily for those of us who couldn’t make it, director D.A. Pennebaker was on hand to shoot the whole thing, resulting in the documentary Monterey Pop
. Half a decade later, summer festivals are now a de rigueur
part of the music landscape, but whether any of them will hold up as well as Monterey is a question that only time can tell.
9:30 p.m. Monday, July 31 | Enzian Theater, 1300 S. Orlando Ave., Maitland | 407-629-0054 | enzian.org