Don McLean biography



The man who wrote the song about the day the music died!

Don McLean is an American singer-songwriter, most famous for his 1971 hit songs American Pie and Vincent.

McLean’s career as a recording artist started only two years prior to American Pie. With the album Tapestry, Don McLean entered the folk scene where he made friends with Pete Seeger and joined the circuit.

When McLean’s indie label Media Arts got sold to United Artists, he got an unexpected chance to make his second album for a major label.

McLean delivered American Pie and became world-famous almost overnight.


American Pie

American Pie is a single by Don McLean from the album with the same name about “the day the music died”, a reference to Buddy Holly’s death.

A lyrical masterpiece, American Pie tells the story of how Don McLean, as a paperboy, finds out that three of his musical heroes have died.

The deaths of Buddy Holly, Richie Valens, and The Big Bopper in a plane crash on February 3rd ’59 may have been described in many ways, but no one ever forgets to mention Don McLean’s classic American Pie, in which the story is told so beautifully through a song.

Don himself claims “It’s not analysis, it’s poetry.”

When asked what the song meant to him, he answered grinning “It means I never have to work again”.


American Pie – Chords

| G D/F# Em | Am C | Em D Dsus4 | 2/4 Dsus2 D |
A long long time ago, I can still remember how that music used to make me smile.
G D/F# Em | Am C | Em C | D Dsus4 D Dsus2 |
And I knew if I had my chance, that I could make those people dance, and maybe they’d be happy for a while.

Go to American Pie chords.


American Pie – Lyrics + Live performance

A long long time ago,
I can still remember how that music used to make me smile.
And I knew if I had my chance, that I could make those people dance,
and maybe they’d be happy for a while.

Go to American Pie lyrics.