"He was the first act to hit the stage, performing for nearly three hours. His performance of “Freedom” ...

— based from the spiritual “Sometimes I Feel Like a Motherless Child” — became an anthem."  

Havens had originally been scheduled to go on fifth but had been bumped up because of travel delays. Festival producer Michael Lang said in the book “The Road to Woodstock” that he chose Havens “because of his calm but powerful demeanor.” 
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