Estrogen crackled like lightning as 20,000 women surged to their feet chanting ìOo oo-oo-oo-oo ooî with adrenaline-rocking post-punk Chrissie Hynde and her band, the Pretenders. Twenty-thousand females bopped and danced, rocked and rolled, boogie woogied, shout-sang and gesticulated with Sheryl Crow as she belted out ìSweet Child Oí Mineî ...by her good friend, Axl Rose. Smooth as silk, Sarah McLachlan held that same swaying twenty thousand in the palm of her hand, as the notes of ìPossessionî rode the summer night air. In case you missed it, the event was the last New York area Lilith Festival for this century.

The Lilith Fair tour, a multi-artist showcase which features women performers from around the world is the single most successful road tour in North America. Grossing more than $28 million, Lilith Fair has also donated over $2 million dollars to National and local woman-focused charities in each city the tour visited. The tour donates $1.00 per ticket sold to a local women's shelter in each of the markets it performs in. The revenue earned this way is often a huge chunk of funding for many of these groups, and a boon in assisting women and children in the local neighborhoods.

The following is a partial list of non-profit organizations which have been present at each of the shows distributing literature, and represent some of the recipients of Lilith Fair's contributions.
The Breast Cancer Fund, a national nonprofit organization which supports:
- replacement of mammography with a safer, more reliable form of detection
- discovery and promotion of non-toxic treatments
- elimination of preventable causes of the disease, such as environmental
- making the best possible medical care, support services and information available to all.
The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) operates a national hotline. 1- 800.656.HOPE - which offers free, confidential counseling and support 24 hours a day for survivors of sexual assault. The 826 local rape crisis centers have already helped more than 260,000 victims of sexual assault.
LIFEbeat, is the American music industry's not-for-profit HIV/AIDS resource and awareness organization. Present at all three Lilith Fair tours LIFEbeat has accomplished an incredible level of HIV/AIDS outreach, distributing condoms, brochures, hotline cards and educational information at each show.
Planned Parenthood, the oldest and largest voluntary reproductive health care organization, is dedicated to the fundamental principle that every individual has the right to decide when or whether to have children. Planned Parenthood believes in access to equal health care for all, and that self-determination contributes to the quality of life, strong family relationships and global population stability.
Global Exchange Founded in 1988, Global Exchange is a non-profit human rights organization that exposes economic and political injustice around the world--and then organizes reform. Among the battles Global Exchange has recently fought are Nike, for abusing the women employees; the Mexican government for denying basic social rights to indigenous people in Chiapas; and the World Bank funding dams which displace local villages and destroy ecosystems. Global Exchange also sponsors a Fair Trade program that strives to build economic independence through the sale of hand-crafted goods from around the world. Contact info: 415-255-7296, voice; 415-255-7498, fax
Laubach Literacy a nonprofit organization focused on teaching basic reading, writing and math skills to adults of all ages. Founded in 1955, Laubach Literacy is the oldest and largest organization of its kind, with more than 1000 member programs throughout the United States, Africa, the Middle East, Asia, Latin America, and the Caribbean.
National Organization for Women a non-profit organization which receives 100% of all operating funds from private donations and membership dues. Established on June 30, 1966, in Washington, D.C. by people attending the Third National Conference of the Commission on the Status of Women, NOW is the largest feminist organization in the nation. NOW's sterling priorities are:
An amendment to the US Constitution that will guarantee equal rights for women; Equal economic opportunity for women
Abortion rights, reproductive freedom and other women's health issues
Civil rights for allOpposing racism Opposing bigotry against lesbians and gays
Ending violence against women
NOWís arsenal is a dedicated activist membership directly involved in marches, rallies, pickets, counter-demonstrations and non-violent civil disobedience, intensive lobbying, grassroots political organizing and litigation.
National Coalition Against Domestic Violence the only national organization of grassroots shelter and service programs for battered women NCADV was formally organized in 1978 by 100 battered women's advocates who attended the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights Hearing on Battered Women in Washington, D.C. NCADV maintains an information and referral center; provides technical assistance to battered women's shelters; produces national conferences and training events; sponsors Domestic Violence Awareness Month every October.For more information on how you can join NCADV call (303) 839-1852 or write to PO Box 18749, Denver, CO 80218
Amnesty International is a grassroots activist organization whose one-million members are dedicated to liberating ìprisoners of conscienceî, i.e. people who have been imprisoned based on beliefs, ethnic origin, gender, sexual orientation, color or language and who have neither used nor advocated violence; obtain fair trials for political prisoners; an end to torture, political killings and "disappearances"; the abolition of capital punishment throughout the world.
The brainchild of this successful economic and social phenomenon is 32 year old Sara McLachlan. During her 10-year career, McLachlan has been the recipient of numerous entertainment and achievement distinctions, including the Elizabeth Cady Stanton Visionary Award, for advancing the careers of woman in music, presented by New York Governor George E. Pataki.
In April, keenly anticipating motherhood Sarah McLachlan announced, to the chagrin of fans and stars alike, that Lilith Fair 1999 would be the final tour after three solidly successful years in a row. "We always had a three-year plan right from the start, and this is going to be the last year in North America for a good long while," said McLachlan. "That could be three years, it could be ten years, it could be never. I'm not really sure at this point. It comes from realizing that we're all well into our thirties, and some of us want to have babies. It's sort of one or the other at this point. It's an awful lot of work, and even though its amazing and rewarding in so many ways, we decided to end it here." Lilith Fair has emerged as such a unifying and powerful force for good, that it would be sinful to not continue it into the Millennium.
When Chrissie Hynde said as she opened her 45 minute set "Apart from the fact that we are a bunch of dumb girls, aren't we fantastic?" the crowd of mothers, daughters, lovers, responded with a roar of unity. Itís about the music, for sure, but more intrinsically, it is about sisterhood.
ROCKING for the sisterhood in the Summer of ë99, Sarah McLachlan, Sheryl Crow, Me'Shell Ndegocello, Luscious Jackson, Dixie Chicks, Indigo Girls, the Pretenders, Monica, Mya, Shawn Colvin, Beth Orton, Deborah Cox, Cibo Matto, Kelly Willis, Martina McBride, Queen Latifah, Sara Evans, Bijou Phillips, Bif Naked, Kendall Payne, Splashdown, Jennifer Knapp, Trish Murphy, Sixpence None the Richer, SusanTedeschi, Dido, Infamous Syndicate, Sinead Lohan, K'sChoice, Cherokee, Aimee Mann, Cree Summers, Melky Sedeck and Lamb. In the past, Tracy Chapman, Sinead O'Connor, Pat Benatar, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Cowboy Junkies, Natalie Merchant, Bonnie Raitt and Emmy Lou Harris have also participated.
BEST PLACE TO GO: Jones Beach Theater, no contest. Overlooks the Bay and 2500 acres of gorgeous parkland, everyone gets a seat with a view.
WHERE NOT TO GO: PCN Bank Arts Center overlooks the NJ Turnpike, shamelessly oversold, filthy, dangerously crowded, long food lines, overwhelming police presence.
ONLINE RESOURCES:
http//www. lilithfair.xoom.com--fabulous site, has everything, video and audio, info and lots of links.
http://www.lilithfair.com This is the ìofficialî site, also fabulous, with the most information.http://www.cybergrrl.com VERY interesting perspective, check this one out.