― John Justen, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 20:17 (twelve years ago) link
oh my god
― BIG HOOS aka the steendriver, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 20:17 (twelve years ago) link
19. A reference to Dylan's style of music, folk music, from the people (you and me).
― max, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 20:19 (twelve years ago) link
the overly self-obsessed quality of the lyrics
― BIG HOOS aka the steendriver, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 20:21 (twelve years ago) link
wait why is this in itr
― 69, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 20:22 (twelve years ago) link
all good things eventually end up here, hoos.
― John Justen, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 20:29 (twelve years ago) link
All the youth got into this album.
― Mr. Que, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 20:30 (twelve years ago) link
It could be that the broken bells are the dead musicians: neither can produce any more music.
― John Justen, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 20:33 (twelve years ago) link
No one could compete against the Beatles.
― HI DERE, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 20:35 (twelve years ago) link
True fact: the source of this scholarly dissertation is a sidebar website to a dudes online MIDI JUKEBOX.
― John Justen, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 21:02 (twelve years ago) link
34. The "place" was Woodstock.
― J0rdan S., Wednesday, 31 October 2007 21:02 (twelve years ago) link
was it ever.
ROCK ROBOT ROCK
― That one guy that hit it and quit it, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 21:09 (twelve years ago) link
Holly, The Big Bopper, and Valens.
― gabbneb, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 21:09 (twelve years ago) link
http://www.truthdig.com/images/eartothegrounduploads/jfk_anniversary_300.jpg http://news-service.stanford.edu/news/2006/january11/gifs/mlk.jpg http://www.lib.umassd.edu/archives/images/RFK.GIF
― gabbneb, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 21:13 (twelve years ago) link
or reverse the first two, if you want
22. This is a play on words. Literally, John Lennon reading about Karl Marx; figuratively, the introduction of radical politics into the music of the Beatles. Both Lennon and Lenin (Soviet dictator) believed in Marxist philosophy.
hahahahaha WARNING BRILLIANT ANALYSIS
xpost: i am glad to see that someone is taking a serious approach to this thank you v much in advance
― John Justen, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 21:16 (twelve years ago) link
OH MY GOD THANK YOU FOR SHARING THIS FOOTNOTES.
― Abbott, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 21:21 (twelve years ago) link
I want to make an American Pie-style song with each footnote for a verse.
― Abbott, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 21:22 (twelve years ago) link
Bob Dylan played a command performance for the Queen and Prince Consort of England. He was not properly attired, so perhaps this is a reference to his apparel.
It could be a reference to Jagger dancing and prancing while the murder was happening. Mick Jagger is Satan, the murder provided the sacrifice.
Want velvet painting of this dancing & prancing.
― Abbott, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 21:23 (twelve years ago) link
A "dirge" is a funeral or mourning song, so perhaps this is meant literally, morning the death of Holly or his music...or, perhaps, this is a reference to some of the new "art rock" groups which played long pieces not meant for dancing. It's likely just a reference to McLean's unhappiness with the way music was going.
― Abbott, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 21:28 (twelve years ago) link
WAU WAU WAU http://www.songfacts.com/detail.php?id=1193 WAU WAU WAU
― John Justen, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 21:31 (twelve years ago) link
srsly, these people make the youtube comments section look like a doctoral dissertation.
Contrary to rumors, the plane that crashed was not named the "American Pie." McLean made up the name.
― John Justen, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 21:33 (twelve years ago) link
The football metaphor could be the Rolling Stones, i.e. they were waiting for an opening which really didn't happen until the Beatles broke up. Or it could refer to attempts of other musicians to come into the limelight while Dylan was laid up.
― Abbott, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 21:33 (twelve years ago) link
"And moss grows fat on our rolling stone" - Mick Jagger's appearance at a concert in skin-tight outfits, displaying a roll of fat, unusual for the skinny Stones frontman.
― John Justen, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 21:35 (twelve years ago) link
The line "Jack be nimble, Jack be quick, Jack Flash sat on a candle stick" is taken from a nursery rhyme that goes "Jack be nimble, Jack be quick, Jack jump over the candlestick." Jumping over the candlestick comes from a game where people would jump over fires. "Jumpin' Jack Flash" is a Rolling Stones song
It's like the song is being interpreted by amazing brilliant brain scientist persons!
― John Justen, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 21:37 (twelve years ago) link
Great Song about the tragic plane crash that buddy holly, richie valens and i forget the last ones name that died, most lyrics in the song based on books "the day the music died" was a book about the plane crash "did you write the book of love" who wrote the book of love is a book, the son is also about him leaving rock and roll to moved on the folk music "do you beilve in rock and roll" "can you teach me to dance real slow" slow dancing was very popular in hte 50s buddy hollys time, "i cant rember if i cried the day i heard of his widowed bride" he read in the paper he deileved about buddy holllys wife, " I knew if i had a chance i could make those people dance" he was a paperboy dreaming of being a singer."drove my chevy to levy" a popular add "apple pie and cevorlet" "this will be the day i die" coming from the book that'll be the day writin by buddy holly "a pink carnation anda pick up truck" a pickup representing freedom nad sexual potentency
- Brendan, calgary, Canada
✧✧✧@K✧✧.E✧✧, you are gone, but not forgotten.
― John Justen, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 21:39 (twelve years ago) link
The part when he says I know that your in love with him because I saw you dancing in the gym is referring to the part of Viva Las Vegas when Elvis and Ann-Margaret are dancing in the gym on the stage. When he says "my hands were clenched with fists of rage" after that whole thing with where he's saying that when I saw him on the stage.... it means that in lot of Elvis movies he gets into fights. There is Elvis in this. This is a good song. I really like it becuase it's so complex. Obviously American Pie is the music of the 50's because "bye,bye, Music of the 50s while those guys drank he died but w/e
- John, Topeka, KY
― John Justen, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 21:45 (twelve years ago) link
The line "Helter Skelter in a summer swelter" is referring to that guy (sorry I can't remember his name) that got hippies to kill people and said that there were voices from God in the Beattle's White album that told him to do the killings. He has a Nazi Swastika tattoed on his forhead and is currently serving life sentence in jail.
- Andrew, Chesterfield, MI
― John Justen, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 21:47 (twelve years ago) link
i'm pretty sure my hs english teacher who did the exegesis said the football reference was a real one, not metaphoric, but i don't remember what it was
― gabbneb, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 22:21 (twelve years ago) link
the halftime part at least
― gabbneb, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 22:23 (twelve years ago) link
68 convention and/or Kent State - http://www.rareexception.com/Garden/Pie.php
― gabbneb, Wednesday, 31 October 2007 22:27 (twelve years ago) link
Is that Yes thing for real????? You didn't doctor the photo, Abbott?
P.S. You're a genius. Please do this:
And MAD props for Charlot + gay porn!
― Kevin John Bozelka, Thursday, 1 November 2007 03:29 (twelve years ago) link
How many of you people are actually taking this seriously? Please let me know if you are.
― John Justen, Friday, 2 November 2007 00:45 (twelve years ago) link
I'm looking at you, gabbneb.
― John Justen, Friday, 2 November 2007 00:50 (twelve years ago) link
That YES picture is SO for real, I want a fucking poster of it bcz it is trues.
This is like my favorite thread.
― Abbott, Sunday, 4 November 2007 22:02 (twelve years ago) link
OH MY GOD WHAT HAPPENED TO ALL THE 8-LINE FOOTNOTESZ?
― Abbott, Sunday, 4 November 2007 22:04 (twelve years ago) link
hey wait WTF?
― John Justen, Sunday, 4 November 2007 22:08 (twelve years ago) link
― Catsupppppppppppppp dude 茄蕃, Monday, 5 November 2007 07:12 (twelve years ago) link
― Catsupppppppppppppp dude 茄蕃, Monday, 5 November 2007 07:13 (twelve years ago) link
WELL THIS FUCKING SUCKS NOW.
― John Justen, Monday, 5 November 2007 21:34 (twelve years ago) link
Automatic thread bump. This poll is closing tomorrow.
― ILX System, Saturday, 10 November 2007 00:01 (twelve years ago) link
― John Justen, Saturday, 10 November 2007 00:56 (twelve years ago) link
hah ILX System u cant braek me
1. The song is about the history of rock and roll music and how it changed after Buddy Holly's death. It is also, however, about McLean's growing up, and his love of the pure rock and roll of the '50s. McClean was a musician. He wanted to make people dance. Most 50's music was meant for dancing and in general upbeat and happy, in contrast to 60's music.
2. McClean was a paperboy on February 3, 1959 when Buddy Holly's plane crashed. He was devastated by the news, since Holly was his idol.
3. Holly's recent bride was pregnant when the crash took place; she had a miscarriage shortly afterward.
4. The same plane crash that killed Buddy Holly also took the lives of Richie Valens ("La Bamba") and The Big Bopper ("Chantilly Lace"). Since all three were so prominent at the time, February 3, 1959 became known as "The Day The Music Died."
5. Goodbye to the music of America, the Rock 'n' Roll and dance music of the '50s. It's interesting how McLean has feminized 50's rock music here, the fact that it's a virgin (Miss) form of music that's as American as apple pie.
6. Chevy represents America. The Levee is the bar where McLean and his friends hung out in his hometown of New Rochelle, NY. It closed down.
7. This line is a play on words. Rye is a city in New York near where McLean grew up. When the Levee closed, the "good ol' boys," McLean and his friends, fled to drink in Rye where together they mourned the deaths of the trio.
8. One of Holly's hits was "That'll be the Day"; the chorus contains the line, "That'll be the Day that I Die."
9. "The Book of Love" by the Monotones; hit in 1958.
10. In 1955, Don Cornell did a song entitled "The Bible Tells Me So." This line could also refer to the sense of disparity that maybe God let us down after the assassination of John Kennedy and the general disillusionment of the early '60s. It is also likely that these lines are meant to garnish rock 'n' roll with religious imagery, because most of the early musicians, including Holly, got their start in church choirs or by singing hymns. An old children's hymn called "Jesus Loves Me" has the line "the Bible tells me so" in the lyrics.
11. This is a lament of the decline of the dance music of the '50s. It might also be a reference to The Lovin' Spoonful's hit in 1965 with John Sebastian's "Do you Believe in Magic?" Or, McLean might be questioning the integrity of music and it's worth after the plane crash
12. Dancing slow was an important part of early rock and roll dance events -- but declined in importance through the 60's as things like psychedelia and the 10-minute guitar solo gained prominence. Back then, dancing was an expression of love, and carried a connotation of commitment. Dance partners were not so readily exchanged as they would be later. Allegorically, the "him" is probably all the young, hansom teen idols that were common in the late '50s and early '60s. The "you" represents all the teenage girls who swooned over those idols.
13. A reference to a "sock hop," generally held in gymnasiums.
14. McLean is letting us know he prefers the R&B music of the '50's to the sock hop music.
15. "A White Sport Coat (And a Pink Carnation)," was a hit for Marty Robbins in 1957. McLean was lonely because his music was out of style.
16. It was roughly 10 years after the death of Buddy Holly that McLean started writing "American Pie."
17. The "rolling stone" is a reference to Bob Dylan, since "Like a Rolling Stone" (1965) was his first major hit; he was busy writing songs extolling the virtues of simple love, family and contentment while staying at home and raking in the royalties. It also is a reference to The Rolling Stones, and a symbollic reversal of the aphorism, "A rolling stone gathers no moss." To McLean, the music of the '60s was gathering moss--growing stale. "That's not how it used to be" refers to the early days of Dylan.
18. The jester is Bob Dylan. The king could refer to Elvis. The Queen is probably the Queen of England, whom Dylan performed for. In the movie "Rebel Without a Cause", James Dean has a red windbreaker that holds symbolic meaning throughout the film. In one particularly intense scene, Dean lends his coat to a guy who is shot and killed; Dean's father arrives, sees the coat on the dead man, thinks it's Dean, and loses it. On the cover of "The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan", Dylan is wearing just such as red windbreaker, and is posed in a street scene similar to one shown in a well-known picture of James Dean. Bob Dylan played a command performance for the Queen and Prince Consort of England. He was not properly attired, so perhaps this is a reference to his apparel.
20. This could be a reference to Elvis's decline and Dylan's ascendance. (i.e. Presley is looking down from a height as Dylan takes his place.) The thorny crown might be a reference to the price of fame, or another religious metaphor.
21. This could be the trial of the Chicago Seven. It could also refer to the aftermath of the Kennedy assassination, which really had no "verdict," and is still open to speculation. Most likely, it is a reference to the fact that there really is no true "king" of rock 'n' roll during this period. For even though Dylan has grabbed (stolen) the mantle of rock's spokesman, the verdict is still out.
23. Allegorically, this line probably refers to the time when the Beatles were still playing in England and Europe. They were still "practicing" because they had not come to America yet.
24. A "dirge" is a funeral or mourning song, so perhaps this is meant literally, morning the death of Holly or his music...or, perhaps, this is a reference to some of the new "art rock" groups which played long pieces not meant for dancing. It's likely just a reference to McLean's unhappiness with the way music was going.
25. "Helter Skelter" is a Beatles song which appears on the "White Album." Charles Manson, claiming to have been "inspired" by the song led his followers in the Tate-LaBianca murders. The "summer swelter" might be a reference to the "Summer of Love" or perhaps to the "long hot summer" of Watts.
26. The Byrd's "Eight Miles High" was on their late 1966 release "Fifth Dimension". It was one of the first records to be widely banned because of supposedly drug-oriented lyrics.
27. One of the Byrds was busted for possession of marijuana.
28. The football metaphor could be the Rolling Stones, i.e. they were waiting for an opening which really didn't happen until the Beatles broke up. Or it could refer to attempts of other musicians to come into the limelight while Dylan was laid up.
29. On July 29, 1966, Dylan crashed his Triumph 55 motorcycle while riding near his home in Woodstock, New York. He spent nine months in seclusion while recuperating from the accident.
30. Drugs, or the hidden messages about drugs in some of the songs of the mid-'60s (half-time in the decade).
31. A clear reference to Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, the Beatles 1967 album that changed rock 'n' roll forever. It was the first theme album, the first to put lyrics on the cover, the first to use synthetic sounds. It had no hit singles, another new concerpt in album production. It had proported hidden messages, mostly drug messages in songs like "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds (LSD). McLean liked it (sweet perfume).
32. All the youth got into this album. They didn't get the chance to dance because the Beatles had now pushed rock music away from its dance roots. They used orchestras. They wrote long, slow songs with ponderous rhythms. Or it could also refer to the fact that the Beatles' 1966 Candlestick Park concert lasted only 35 minutes.
33. No one could compete against the Beatles. Some folks think this refers to either the 1968 Demomcratic Convention or Kent State. What was "revealed" was the dark underlying messages of rock music: the Marxism that was alluded to in the previous verse, the advocation of drug use, the overly self-obsessed quality of the lyrics.
35. Perhaps this is a reference to "hippies", who were sometimes known as the "lost generation", partially because of their particularly acute alienation from their parents, and partially because of their presumed preoccupation with drugs. It could also be a reference to the '60s TV show, "Lost in Space," whose title was sometimes used as a synonym for someone who was rather high. Perhaps, their preference for psychedelia had pushed rock and roll so far from Holly's music that it couldn't be retrieved.
36. Probably a reference to Mick Jagger of the Rolling Stones; "Jumpin' Jack Flash" was released in May, 1968.
37. The Stones' Candlestick park concert? Candlestick park was also the venue for the Beatles' final performance--the end of the rock 'n' roll era.
38. It's possible that this is a reference to the Grateful Dead's "Friend of the Devil".
39. While playing a concert at the Altamont Speedway in 1968, the Stones appointed members of the Hell's Angels to work security (on the advice of the Grateful Dead). In the darkness near the front of the stage, a young man named Meredith Hunter was beaten and stabbed to death -- by the Angels. Public outcry that the song "Sympathy for the Devil" had somehow incited the violence caused the Stones to drop the song from their show for the next six years. This incident is chronicled in the documentary film "Gimme Shelter". It's also possible that McLean views the Stones as being negatively inspired (remember, he had an extensive religious background) by virtue of "Sympathy for the Devil", "Their Satanic Majesties' Request" and so on.
40. This could be a reference to Jimi Hendrix burning his Stratocaster at the Monterey Pop Festival, or simply the bonfires that were lit at the outside concerts. It could be a reference to Jagger dancing and prancing while the murder was happening. Mick Jagger is Satan, the murder provided the sacrifice.
41. Janis Joplin
42. Janis died of an accidental heroin overdose on October 4, 1970.
43. The "sacred store" might be Bill Graham's Fillmore East, one of the great rock and roll venues of all time. Alternatively, this refers to record stores, and their longtime (then discontinued) practice of allowing customers to preview records in the store. It could also refer to record stores as "sacred" because this is where one goes to get "saved". (See above lyric "Can music save your mortal soul?") The music "wouldn't play" means that nobody is interested in hearing Buddy Holly et.al.'s music anymore. Or, as above, the discontinuation of the in-store listening booths. Another interpretion is that the "store" is the record industry in 1970; the "music" is McLean's own song, American Pie, and "the man" is the recording industry and radio. McLean's style of music, particularly this song, just wouldn't play. It was too long (over 8 minutes), too folksy, and too late.
44. Protestors being beaten by police and National Guard troops.
45. The trend towards psychedelic music in the '60s.
46. It could be that the broken bells are the dead musicians: neither can produce any more music.
47. Holly, The Big Bopper, and Valens.
48. They died; rock died. Elvis has left the building. Buddy Holly is no more. Rock 'n' roll is over, at least in its original form. And Don McLean can only watch them go and sing, "Bye-bye, Miss American Pie..."
― John Justen, Saturday, 10 November 2007 01:02 (twelve years ago) link
YEAH THATS RIGHT "ILX SYSTEM", SUCK IT
― John Justen, Saturday, 10 November 2007 02:05 (twelve years ago) link
Automatic thread bump. This poll's results are now in.
― ILX System, Sunday, 11 November 2007 00:01 (twelve years ago) link
― John Justen, Tuesday, 18 March 2008 01:41 (eleven years ago) link
ultimate LINE DANCE throwdown poll
― HI DERE, Tuesday, 18 March 2008 01:42 (eleven years ago) link
AMERICAN PIE AND THE ARMAGEDDON BIBLE PROPHECY
― clotpoll, Monday, 3 November 2008 01:41 (eleven years ago) link
JESUS WORE THE 'THORNY CROWN' OF AMERICAN PIE!
holy shit dude
― NURSES! WE AT FRUIT AT WORK! (John Justen), Monday, 3 November 2008 03:18 (eleven years ago) link
i feel another poll coming on, but where to start?
― NURSES! WE AT FRUIT AT WORK! (John Justen), Monday, 3 November 2008 03:19 (eleven years ago) link
― goole, Monday, 3 November 2008 03:46 (eleven years ago) link
In an imaginary, physiological, emotionally laden domain, the listener who remembers a hit song, will turn into the song's ideal subject, he will turn into the person for who the song ideally speaks. At the same time, as one of many who identify with that fictitious subject, that musical "I," he will feel his isolation ease, as he himself feels integrated into the community of fans.
In whistling such a song, he bows to a ritual of socialization, but except for this, his isolation continues unchanged. The comparison with addiction was inescapable. Addicted conduct generally has a social component. Addiction to music, on the part of many entertainment listeners, is similar to addiction.
When you mix music with drugs, it becomes super phsyco addictive.
The 'Hit Parade,' according to a book called 'Dope Inc.,' is organized around the same principles, used by 'Ancient Egypt's Isis priesthood,' and for the same purposes. 'The Hit Parade,' is used to recruit youth, into the 'Dionistic,' counter cultures, such as the 'Hippie' movement, the 'Hare Krishna's,' and other eastern pagan cults.
― clotpoll, Monday, 3 November 2008 04:06 (eleven years ago) link
LISTEN TO AMERICA'S FUNERAL HYMN BY ROY TAYLOR
― a thread for clams that you are free to disregard (jjjusten), Friday, 13 March 2009 17:32 (ten years ago) link
i gotta do this to some other song
― O_o-O_O-o_O (jjjusten), Thursday, 13 June 2013 18:31 (six years ago) link