Song Legends {Episode 4} - American Pie (Don McLean)

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"American Pie" is a folk rock song by Don McLean, a single from the 1971 album "American Pie".

The lyrics are a wonderful, poetic take on the evolution of rock music during the 60s after the death of Buddy Holly. The lyrics are filled with clever references and the lyrics in the chorus are probably one of the most well known of any. The lyrics are easily my favourite part of the song and I love the line "day the music died" for some reason, it always gives me shivers.

It's a very vocally centered song but the piano is very skillfully played and makes the song bouncy and almost fun to listen to. However, it doesn't do much more than add depth and atmosphere so I can't give it full marks.

His voice is nothing special but he clearly put his all into the singing and he's catchy and sing-a-long-able (that's a good thing in my eyes, some people disagree). The backing vocals are good too in the chorus but again nothing special. I can't say I dislike the singing - I enjoy singing along to it a lot - but his voice is a bit dull in the beginning and he sounds kinda happy in the middle and isn't meant to be a sad song about a plane crash? I may be viewing the song completely wrong, tell me if you know.

It's a long build-up that gradually gets faster and louder and towards the end it gets slower and quieter again before a final climax. I particularly like the ending, I think it's quite an effective ending because ending louder after a quiet section contrasts more than that same ending would after a louder section. I can't really fault the structure in any way, it does what it needs to do and so it gets full marks.

It's a song that's more famous than the person who wrote it. I knew the chorus to this song long before I knew who Don McLean was. It was number 1 in the charts basically everywhere at the time and has become a very well known classic.

My Opinion:
I don't think it deserves it's massive success, but I can see why it did with the deep lyrics and all. I just think it's not good enough musically to be as popular as it was. Having said that, it's a very nice song and I enjoy it a lot.

That's 55/60 which just beats Man In The Box but is McLeanly sweeped past by Night Enchanted (see what I did there), leaving it 3rd.