People came from all over the country to experience rock and roll at the Lake Amador Gold Rush Festival held on October 4, 1969. An estimated 40,000 people flocked to the small county of Amador in central California to visit Lake Amador and its surrounding hills for this event.
Performing at the concert were:
Ike and Tina Turner
Sons of Champlin
Lake Amador, CA
i was there and don’t remember much. i got high on mushrooms and one of the guys took some reds and we all had to baby sit this idiot. i do remember what a dust bowl it became. but the music that i do remember was outstanding. Tina Turner was smokin hot and the Ikeets. SMOKIN HOT. I think i was like 16. and there you go.
My experience was very similar. I had just turned 20. It was not just a dust bowl, but without enough food, water, etc. Luckily we didn’t have to babysit anyone else. We eventually fell asleep on the hillside under the stars. But not before being blown away by Tina Turner. I agree, she was the high point among some other really good performances.
Correct about situation. I was one of the students in “Doc Davis’s botany class at SJDC. We all got an A in botany for helping him put it on that fall. Apparently the word on the street was after the concert,the $$ got stolen and he moved to Hawaii. I remember being on stage when Santana played and it was rockin man, figuritly and literally.
Dave you are 💯 % correct! I didn’t do drugs either. NO AHendrix and yes Santana was the last performer of the night! Ike & Tina performed during the day not at night. I was right in front of her in the crowd. She IS “Simply The Best!”
Does anyone know the album that had people walking over the hills to get there on the cover???
do you remember Poet Christopher Alden too I dont see him here on the rroster
No mention of Jimi Hendrix at this concert. I was there and Hendrix closed the show.
I was there and saw a guy water skiing nude. At least I think I saw it, I had purchased some orange sunshine acid on the way in. Ike and Tina and the Ikettes killed it and Bo Didley was awesome as well. Santana closed out the show. There was skinny dipping up the hill in a pond. The crowd was mellow and I didn’t notice any drama. Good times….
Kenyatta, Yes, I do remember Hendrix did show up and play a set.
Believe me Jimi did not play at the show!!
Nope he was not there. I was straight did no drugs and it was one hella concert but absolutely NO HENDRIX.
aaahh no…Santana closed the show. Hendrix was nowhere to be seen, wasn’t expected to be there.
Yep. Hendrix was NOT there. Look at the poster above, he is not listed.
We had met the Sons of Champlin 2 weeks after my coming to the westcoast as they picked us up hitchhiking in Santa B took us to a wild week in Yosemite and then out to Marin where we met members of Quicksilver Santana the Dead and various hangers-on at the heli hanger used as a recording studio in Sausalito. then those boys shuttled us neophyte west coasters to Lake Amador for backstage madness and fun. The hottest groupies seemed intent on the Santana boys, Jose Chepito Aries in particular.I vaguely remember Jimi but don’t quote me. I did see him earlier with the Experience in Cincinnati and later for his tour-de-force Star spangled Banner at Woodstock, as I followed music around the country that summer. Lake Amador was a real eye opener for us east coasters naked hippies swimming open pot smoking
I know this is before my time and happened long ago. If I seen Jimi Hendrix i would know exact concert location day or night. Imbedded In my brain like the day president Kennedy was assassinated , everyone 65 or older remembers that day. You know whether you see Hendrix or not. Especially on good night. Unfortunately there is none. Not a lot of any help high performance Hendrix on film. . I used to run into lot guys seen Hendrix back in the day. And the stories vary but most seem like either bad or incredible as if they haven’t felt since.
Still remember my first concert in 1981 pat Travers and blackmores rainbow. I was loaded on pcp (someone laced joint) Never been sober at any events. But i guarantee this, Hendrix did not show up, not once.
YES, THE GREATEST OPEN AIR CONSERT I EVER ENJOYED. AT THAT DATE I HADE FRIENDS WRITING ME FROM VIETNAM. I HAD JUST TURNED 19. I COULDN’T BELIEVE EVERYONE SMOKING JOINTS IN THE OPEN. CHANGED MY ATTITUDE ABOUT CANIBUS.
MY BUDDY FRANK AND MYSELF WERE SITTING HALF WAY UP THE HILL ABOUT 300 FEET FROM THE STAGE. I REMEMBER SITTING WITH ANN AND MARILYN. ANN WAS A GORGEOUS WOMAN OF 18. I WAS FASCINATED WATCHING HER SWAW AND DANCE. WOW GOOD TO BE YOUNG. I FELL ASLEEP LISTENING TO SANTANA. IT HAD BEEN A LONG DAY.
I STILL FIND FOLKS THAT WERE THERE AND HAVE A STORY OR TWO TO TELL. GREATEST OF MUSIC MEMORIES FOR THIS GUY.
Yep. I was 29.
My wife and I left our three-year old with grandma.
When we got back she was furious! The Tribune’s headlines read-
“NAKED GIRLS DANCING IN CLOUDS OF MARIJUANA SMOKE!”
The whole thing was awesome!
Got to actually meet Bo Diddley!
Ike and Tina and the Iketts were amazing!
Well it was 50 years ago this week!!! Hard to believe!!!
Yeah, I’ll never forget being down in front of the stage looking up at Tina Turner pumping her hips in that skimpy dress. I don’t think she was wearing anything underneath it. Taj Mahal was my favorite next to Ike and Tina. But it was all “far out.”
The weather was perfect and all was well except for some bikers that crowded the trip. They stomped a poor guy into the dirt for trying to defend his girlfriend’s honor. Bastards. I was at Altamont too but my friends and I left before the violence started.
Anyway, I don’t think there’s any film of the event but a news crew from Sacramento filmed me rolling a joint under an oak tree. It was on the evening news and my dad saw it. Ha. What could I say?
…I was there also..I was enjoying the show when a girl tapped me on the shoulder and as I turned to her she put a sugar cube into my mouth and she said ”have fun”. Two mins later the promoter said over the pa system ”Attention! Someone is handing out bad LSD on sugar cubes so don’t take it”. NOT what I wanted to hear. Just then Tina Turner came on and I danced like no one was looking, went skinny dipping, met a beautiful girl from Santa Cruz and had a great trip, turns out it was just good acid that some people couldn’t handle…
I don’t remember ever seeing anything about this back then but sure would have loved to have been there. I fish at this lake and can’t imagine where the stage would have been. Wish there was film.
I was 16 and went with some friends. No drugs for me! I remember being up close to the stage when Tina and Ike were on. I saw other performers but dont remember much about them. It got so cold at night so I curled up in a sleeping bag and i remember hearing Santana. Wish i could have watched them and not just hear him. Glad my mom let me go to this concetand not The Altamont Concert.
I was there…16 years old with my girlfriend, Jeannie. I had seen the Sons before a few times and loved them. I remember Ike and Tina…her energy was amazing. But what stuck with me was Santana…they came on just after it got dark, and I think they opened with Black Magic Woman. That guitar echoing through the hills was pretty amazing. These bands were at the top of their creativity at that time.
I was there and it was great. Met many good people. Only down part was when the Hells Angels said they were going to throw me in the fire because I talked to them but didn’t bring firewood. When I got home my parents said they were told I was on the news jumping off a rock into the lake. I was stoned but it wasn’t me. I was 18 and wild and did many crazy things. I also got blamed for many things I didn’t do. Came with the rep.
I was there with friends. I was just shy of 16 years old. Me and my friends traded a Schwinn 10 speed bicycle for a 1949 Studebaker in Stockton to get us to the concert. We bought a battery for the car to get it running but it only made it as far as Hwy 99 at the Waterloo Rd. overcrossing before it broke down. We easily hitched a ride from there to the Lake Amador. When we arrived we were able to walk right into the concert with a lot of other people when the crowd got bigger than anticipated and they let people in for free. One of my friends parents had a hotdog booth so we had food. I remember a lot of people skinny dipping in the cement pond at the top of the hill and some people skiing naked in the lake and a lot of college kids dancing topless in front of the stage. At that point I knew I was in for something crazy. There was a lot of pot, psychedelics and wine. I got to meet Carlos Santana and Bo Diddley when the came by our circle of friends sitting on the ground and ask us if we were enjoying the concert. Best memories, Ike and Tina Turner and the Iket’s, Cold Blood and Santana.
We were there. With the Woodstock vibe still in the air everyone was into it. We came from Sac and had seen these bands before at the good old sound factory, so we knew it would be great. Excellent music, beautiful people, the best weather, great location; a little dusty but so what, and the best array of drugs around. Back then, that was all us kids wanted to do. The only bring down for me was hells angels riding through and over people in sleeping bags that night. Anyway, in my opinion, Gold Rush ‘69 was the best festival NorCal has ever had. I sure miss those great times from the olden days.
Drove up from Modesto in a VW van full of my friends. One of the best rock festivals I ever attended, in part because there was an unusual number of Black musicians. Bo Diddly, Ike & Tina Turner, Taj Mahal and Albert Collins. I think this was the first time I saw Taj Mahal and he had the incredible Jesse Ed Davis on lead guitar–definitely one of the most amazing guitar players I ever saw. Sons of Champlin were a huge favorite of mine but they came out and announced that they’d been delayed so long that all the acid they’d dropped had peaked and they were terrible. One of the tightest bands ever and they couldn’t hit the same beat ever. It was kind of funny. Tina Turner was the pinnacle for me (and just learned that she died today at 83). Bo Diddly essentially had one song he played over and over. That Bo Diddly beat was great (ask Quicksilver) but it gets old fast. I honestly don’t remember seeing Santana this time so my ride may have left before they came on. I’m sure they were great; they always were.
We arrived Friday night and sat on the hill with a few other groups of people. A few various musicians were jamming. A campfire here and there. The next morning the whole hill in front of the stage was covered with people. Taj Mahal, Carlos Santana, Ike & Tina were awesome. The most moving act to me was Lydia Penske & Cold Blood: blew me away. T
I was there too. A few Hell’s Angels seemed to determined to ruin the event, but peace & love won.