Story : http://www.usatoday.com/story/life/music/2013/04/22/richie-havens-dies-obituary/
Wearing a dashiki and strumming earnestly on the open-tuned strings of his guitar, folk singer Richie Havens set the tone for Woodstock. Havens, who opened the watershed 1969 music festival and fashioned a career from covering pop and folk tunes in his distinctively rhythmic style, died Monday morning in his home from a heart attack. He was 72.
Born in 1941, the Brooklyn native moved to Greenwich Village in the early '60s and released his first album, A Richie Havens Record, in 1965. In 1967, he signed with Bob Dylan's manager, Albert Grossman, and also landed a deal with Verve Records. His big break came when he played a lengthy opening set at Woodstock, particularly a memorable extrapolation of the spiritual Motherless Child that became known as Freedom.
In 2004, Jack Black told USA TODAY that Havens' blistering acoustic set was an inspiration to his comedy rock duo Tenacious D "because we couldn't believe how hard a guy could rock with an acoustic guitar."