Rage Against The Machine, Audioslave and Prophets of Rage guitarist Tom Morello turns 55 today. The rap-rock trailblazer and fierce political activist is still fighting the power—his debut single with Prophets of Rage was paired with a protest performance at the 2016 Republican National Convention, and his Twitter feed is full of condemnations of ICE, disgust at several states’ recent abortion restrictions and pleas to support the ACLU.
To celebrate Morello’s birthday, Paste dug up Rage Against The Machine’s full concert at Woodstock ’99. Let’s hope Woodstock 50 is less disastrous than the 30th anniversary, but as it stands now, we can’t be totally sure. The site of the 1999 festival reportedly reached triple digit temperatures, and the two main stages were so far apart that many festival-goers became dehydrated. On top of that, advertisements were plastered on practically every surface—a stark contrast with the original festival’s simple mission of peace and music. There weren’t enough bathrooms, and looting and large bonfires were aplenty, leaving New York State Troopers scrambling to control the crowds.
However hectic the crowds were, Rage Against The Machine’s performance featured nearly as much havoc. They burned an American flag and shouted political and social justice anthems like 1992’s “Killing In The Name” and 1996’s “Bulls on Parade.”
Watch Rage Against The Machine’s full set at Woodstock ‘99 below, and scroll down for Tom Morello’s 2018 interview in the Paste Studio.