The Man Behind The Texas International Pop Festival
Fifty years ago the town of Lewisville hosted a first in Texas.
The Texas International Pop Festival.
Featuring acts such as Led Zeppelin, B.B. King, Janis Joplin, Chicago and many more, the event took place just twelve days after Woodstock. Staged just off I-35 at what was then an auto racing complex known as Dallas International Speedway, a historical marker now commemorates the festival at DART’s Green Line Hebron Station. Exact attendance is unknown, but an estimated crowd of 150,000 people showed up for three days of music.
This Labor Day Weekend, the Texas International Pop Festival returns to Lewisville – produced by the same man who brought it to town in 1969: Angus Wynne III.
What B.B. King did each night after the show. How Led Zeppelin nearly ruined the whole thing. Why there were men with machine guns on the highway. What the local police chief did. And how the fine citizens of Lewisville handled 150,000 hippies.
A born promoter, Wynne founded Wynne Entertainment – which came naturally. An uncle was part-owner of the Dallas Cowboys. His father created Six Flags Over Texas. Wynne’s brother is a highly-successful restaurant owner and concept creator. Inspired by the Monterrey Pop Festival and Woodstock, Wynne partnered with Georgia promoter Alex Cooley – fresh off staging the Atlanta Pop Festival over the July 4th holiday that same year.
A few days ago, I sat down with Angus for a few minutes to talk about that first event – and his stories did not disappoint.
So, as the final preparations are made and the sound checks begin, let’s step back to a time when all this was very new – and look forward to the huge anniversary party just ahead. And, make sure to spend a few minutes watching the included video of the 1969 festival itself.