Don McLean: American Pie


McLean wrote this and released it on his American Pie album in 1971. It topped the US charts in early 1972 and reached No 2 in Britain.

A reader in Northern Ireland has sent me this anecdote: ‘In the 60s Belfast was on the tour so they all came – Stones, Beatles, Bee Gees, Jimi Hendrix etc etc. The Troubles stopped it and for a decade only Don McLean came – he played at Queens Uni around 72 – the height of the Troubles – the audience spontaneously stood up as he came on stage and started singing American Pie – he burst into tears and promised to return every year – and he did throughout the terrible bombing campaign Belfast endured in the 70s.’

Here is a live performance from 1972.


One Reply to “Don McLean: American Pie”

  1. Very good , Margaret. He played in the Whitla Hall.
    Czechoslovakia played an international football match at Windsor park as the first international team to play in Belfast, they were applauded onto the pitch.
    Prior to this 58,000 watched N. Ireland play—afterwards crowds collapsed.
    I played tennis–even tennis players would not come.
    I remember driving home one evening—the army stopped me on one of the bridges to tell me about a sniper—but don’t worry son, he couldn’t hit a barn door!!
    Dark days
    Thank you Margaret, I was briefly a student again.

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