This section is still under construction....
Gunni (visitor, then 20) remembers:
I don´t recall how we learned about the festival on Fehmarn, but i remember I had the red flyer before I went there, so the must have been some promotion beforehand. I think we went to Burg (capital of Fehmarn) by bus, and then we walked the rest of the way. That must have been on September 3rd. Getting there turned out to by easy, you just had to follow the walking masses, it looked like caravanserais, we were crossing farmland and meadows too. At first we thought about climbing over the fence, to get in for free, but the Hells Angels were REALLY brutal. The really punched the people, who tried, back over the fence. I saw how someone was beaten on his head with heavy chains. So we decided to buy tickets. From that evening on, it rained for almost the entire festival. Three days in the mud. We did not bring a tent, but we were lucky to get "admission" to one of the larger tents behind the audience, most probably because we had lots of hash with us. I think that was also one of the tents the rockers had occupied. No idea how exactly we got in, I guess it was like: " Hey, we are two guys from Hamburg, we got lots to smoke, can we hang out for a while?". "Yes, come on in, make yourself feel at home...". We had no problems from then on. I don´t remember all the bands, but, yes...Alexis Korner, Canned Heat, Cravinkel...
In the en,d we had come mainly to see Jimi Hendrix. We waited three days for Hendrix. When Jimi came out on stage, the sun suddenly came out, the concert was unbelievable. After that, i stayed for a few hours, I think i did still see Embryo, then we quit.
Christian Burchard (drummer of EMBRYO) remembers:
Fehmarn was our first big festival and we thought, that will be great: all the stars playing there, I mean huge stars, and us as well among that line-up! We were really euphoric and drove the 1000 km from Munich to Fehmarn in our VW van without stopping. We arrived in the evening, it was dark, and the weather was really bad: rain and storm. We were immediately welcomed by a gang of bikers surrounding our van. We told them we were Embryo, and were supposed to play at the festival. Now you see, back then, these old VW vans had these edges around the roof, and that is where the bikers held on to, and started beating the pedestrians "out of the way" with their chains. We were totally shocked and screamed: "Are you crazy? Stop it!". But they were completely drunk and did not react at all.
Our mood had turned from good to bad completely. We were absolutely speechless. Somehow we managed to get into the backstage area behind the stage. Canned Heat were playing and I wanted to see them. I climbed onto the back of the stage and the first thing 5 saw was that roadie, kneeling on the floor and holding the drummer´s cymbal stands, so that they would not be blown away by the storm. Canned Heat only played slow blues tunes. Their guitar player had just died a few days ago, and they told us in every song. They were still under shock obviously. Later, we met Alexis Korner, which was our good luck. None of the organizers were around, there was nobody there who could give us any informations. Most probably Alexis was the saviour of the whole festival. In the breaks, he always went on stage, played a couple of blues tunes, and tried to create some good vibrations. Backstage he took care of the artists as well. He took us by the hand and accompanied us to our sleeping place. We were really exhausted from our trip but we sat with him and talked until 4 in the morning. The next moring we went back to the festival ground with Alexis and were surprised to find the whole Munich posse there. People like Rainer Langhans, Uschi Obermeier, etc - they had all come and hoped to be able to spend some time with Jimi Hendrix. Of course, that was in vain. Jimi drove by and vanished into his backstage caravan, guarded by bikers with knives...we thought to ourselves: for heaven´s sake, what kind of place have we come to....
I saw Jimi Hendrix´performance from within the audience, and there the atmosphere was really a different one: The weather was great, and a good audience energy. I also thought that Jimi played a good show. The people liked it and the was a positive feel around. We played directly after Jimi and could benefit from those vibrations. Our concert was great. We played 45 minutes and the audience response was amazing. While playing, the landscape constantly changed. I enjoyed that a lot. The sun was shining and it was a special feeling to play so close to the sea.
After the gig things became a bit stress again. We had to cave our equipment and make sure nothing was stolen. Back then, people really stole a lot at concerts, equipment was expensive. We panicked a bit about that, as we had shows on our way back to Munich, and could not have played if anything important went missing. We were so focused on packing up our stuff, that we paid no attention at all as to what happened on stage. The next hassle was coming up: We had to get our money. One of our posse, Max Pax, went to the organizer´s caravan to get it. There, he was given 150 DM (petrol money) and a cheque over 2000 DM. Max seemed to see things coming and hid the money in one of socks, maybe also someone in there had told him to do that, dunno, anyway, he hid it there, and was searched by the bikers right at the exit, and they would have taken it for sure had they found it . Always these confrontations with the bikers who really abused their status as quasi security.
I can still remember LIMBUS 4, we were friends with them, and then the SCHERBEN cmae onstage and the stage started to burn. That was our sign: into the van and out of this place! That was also the moment I realized that the cheque was not going to pay....
(from: jimi hendrix und der sturm auf fehmarn, kulturbuch bremen 1997)
Ford Crull (then 17, assistant stage manager ) remembers:
Now a New York-based artist, Crull was 17 at the time and had heard about Fehmarn while at the Isle Of Wight. He was hired as a stage hand, and a later turned into a stage manager at Fehmarn.
“If you think the Isle of Wight was a mess, you should have been to Fehmarn. I was on my way to Sweden to meet a girl I’d met. En route, I took a detour and hooked up with British folk rockers Fotheringay (featuring Sandy Denny) and found myself hired as a stage hand. Fehmarn had a good line-up, but it was just chaos. Sandy Denny kept getting an electric shock from the mic. Whoever built the stage was an idiot. There were gales, so the sea just kept blowing on stage. The whole place was wet and so she kept getting shocks.”
Crull remembers another potentially dangerous experience as he accompanied Rod Stewart and the stage manager over to the business office to collect their payment.
“They just had suitcases packed with cash to give the bands – in American dollars too. We had to walk back through everyone with these cases packed with I don’t know how many thousands of dollars. I’m sure if the bikers had known, they would have stormed the office.” (That wasn’t the only excess. Back in The Faces camp, Ford pulled out his hash. The Faces pulled out theirs. “I had an ounce,” he chuckles. “They must have had a pound.”)
about Jimi Hendrix:
“When I saw them, Jimi and Mitchell and Cox weren’t even talking to each other. And he and Mitchell were so skinny. Mitchell’s legs were as thin as my arms.”
about getting out of the chaos:
“The bikers realised they weren’t gonna get paid and they were running amuck. When the rioting started, the German police appeared and they basically had a gun fight with these guys. Our van had the windows smashed and I helped the roadie by holding up a tarpaulin so he could see while the rains came blasting in. When we got to the hotel where the band was I remember Sandy Denny giving me a big kiss for saving their stuff and they offered me a job. She was a real angel.”