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This Is How Much Music Festivals Have Changed Since 1969

Slightly NSFW — because the best music festivals always are.

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The 1960s

Hippies, students, and music lovers dance freely during the Isle of Wight pop festival at East Afton Farm, UK (left). Huge crowds of people sit back and enjoy a Bob Dylan concert at the Isle of Wight Pop Festival (right).

Crowds of concert-goers attend the Woodstock Music and Arts Fair at Bethel, New York, in mid-August, 1969. The three-day concert attracted hundreds of thousands of people, and became a landmark cultural event of the late '60s.

The 1970s

A naked hippie couple stand by a lake in Middletown, Connecticut, at the site of what should have been the Powder Ridge Music Festival in 1970 (left). A legal injunction cancelled the event, but about 30,000 people arrived despite the cancellation. A couple kissing in the crowd at the Isle of Wight Pop Festival (right).

Sigvar Holmer / AP

Youthful concert-goers, part of a crowd of 20,000, have a picnic while attending the rock festival at Roskilde, Denmark, in 1972. Around 20 jazz and rock bands participated along with the Kinks, Family and Sha Na Na.

The 1980s

Crowds cheer before a Rolling Stones performance at the Hartford Civic Center in Hartford, Connecticut, in 1981 (left). That summer the Rolling Stones were slated for two concerts in Hartford as part of their United Sates tour — both concerts were immediately sold out. A large banner shows the logo of 'Live Aid,' a 16-hour music marathon organized in 1985 to raise money to help the starving in Africa.


Medical staff spray concert fans with cool water from hoses during the Live Aid concert for famine relief at JFK Stadium in Philadelphia, Pa. July 13, 1985. A fan in the front row, center, wears a t-shirt of the band The Hooters. (AP Photo/Amy Sancetta)

The 1990s

A concert goer at the '99 Woodstock Music and Arts Festival in Rome, New York, is thrown high as he crowd-surfs the audience at the main stage (left). Participants of the techno music Street Parade dance in the streets of Zurich in 1997 (right). Up to 500 thousand techno fans swamped Zurich for Europe's second-largest techno festival, after the Berlin Love Parade. The participants, in flashy costumes or scantily clad for the hot weather, came from across Europe for the five-hour parade of 30 booming sound trucks along the city's lakefront.

A couple of friends dance in the mud to the band Hothouse Flowers, at the Pyramid stage on the second day of the Glastonbury festival in 1998 (left). The three day festival, which is the largest of its kind in Europe, attracted around 90,000 people that year. A mother holds daughter (right) as they dance on day one of the "A Day in The Garden" festival in 1998, held on the original 1969 site of the Woodstock Music and Arts Festival.

Str New

A concert-goer leaps over a fire burning into the early morning hours, following the close of the Woodstock Music and Arts Festival in 1999. Groups of fans banded together to burning huge plywood panels, what had been the 'Woodstock Peace Wall', during the 30th anniversary festival staged at the former Griffiss Air Force base in Rome, New York.

The 2000s

A fan watches a performance by the band Explosions in the Sky at the 2007 Coachella Music Festival (left). Wayne Coyne of The Flaming Lips performs on stage during the 2009 Splendour in the Grass Festival in Byron Bay, Australia.

Members of the crowd react in the rain as they listen to the band Seventh Day Slumber, during the Creation Christian music festival in Shirleysburg, Pennsylvania, in 2007 (left). A festival-goer gets covered in mud near the main Pyramid Stage at the 2009 Glastonbury Festival in Glastonbury, England (right). That year, heavy rain and thunderstorms greeted the 137,000 music fans at one of Europe's largest festivals.

The 2010s

Singer Rihanna smokes marijuana on the shoulders of her bodyguard in the audience of the 2012 Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in Indio, California (left). A festival attendee shows off her braided hair at the 2015 Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival.

A reveller walks through a field of garbage left in the aftermath of the 2015 Glastonbury Festival in Britain (left). A woman wearing a flower crown smokes marijuana at the 2015 Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival (right).