Skip to comments.“American Pie” explained. The Song By Don Mclean
Posted on 02/10/2012 5:39:54 AM PST by navysealdad
Songs like Revolution by The Beatles, which was clearly suspicious of violent revolution and uprisings, as well as American Pie by Don McLean.
Many people think that the song American Pie is about the death of Buddy Holly and other musicians in a plane crash, but Glenn presented a reading of the lyrics on radio and showed how it could also be seen as a warning against the danger of violent uprisings.
Ive never understood I drove the Chevy to the levee, I didnt know what that was. Lets just start there on the simple part because Chevy, just think of Chevy and mom and apple pie. Hes making a point here. Chevy, I drove my Chevy to the levee. This actually goes back into the 1950s and a Dinah Shore commercial for Chevy,
(Excerpt) Read more at angelfire.com ...
One that always scared me was “Back Door Man” by the Doors.
I read the explanation. Whatever. A song that obscure fails its message. No one understands it, so what is the point?
I remember American Pie for this reason......
Shortly after buying the 45 of this song, which had the first half on one side and the second half on the other, I got braces on my teeth. The orthodontist instructed me that I had to brush for 5 minutes every time.
The “B” side, second half of this song, was 4:31 long. I would put it on the record player and brush my teeth to it.
Ah—I had thought he’d sung “drinking whiskey an’ rye...”
If so, then Buddy and the angels truly puked when the song reached them.
Can't believe how often I had to endure that song during my morning paper route in the early 70's.
No way to know for sure. Maybe some of his wording is just words that rhyme and sound good together. McLean isn't saying.
Saying "drinking whiskey and rye" would be like saying "drinking beer and pilsner". Since pilsner is just a type of beer, just as rye is just a type of whiskey, it doesn't make much sense. Again though, it doesn't preclude him saying it if he chose. The lyrics to the song posted on his website DO say "and", not "in".
I just prefer the explanation that seems to make the lyrics logically make sense. It makes more sense to me than pulling a phrase from some Dinah Shore Chevy ad that mentions a levee and throwing it together with some unrelated phrase about drinking whiskey and rye. I think McLean spent a lot of time choosing just the right words for his thoughts and that he didn't throw in words that didn't make sense in portraying his thoughts.
Other things in the song like "sang for the Kind and Queen" don't make sense until you look on the internet and find that there is a King and Queen pub in London where Dylan played. In "a voice that came from you and me".... check out youtube versions of Woody Guthrie singing This Land is Your Land and you'll get an idea what Dylan used for creating his singing style.
Sheesh... KING and Queen.
Yes, very scary.
In the Martin Scorsese documentary about Bob Dylan, Joan Baez talks about Dylan sitting there writing lyrics on the typewriter and laughing that someone is going to try to make them mean something.
Why minimize Buddy?
It’s a Buddy song.
OBTW, I am the Walrus koo-kook-a-chu
drove my chevy to the levee but the levee was dry.......
just as the Chevrolet itself is a familiar icon of 1950s America. Also, given that a drive to a levee carries the suggestion of romance in a car, we can almost see him on a date here. But the date is over, the levee is drysomeone he once loved has betrayed him; something that once gave him sustenance has evaporated.
No deposits, lol, but I actually read that on a link here earlier in the day. The link supposedly described the ‘meaning’ of his words.
I always liked this song. The words are similar to Dylan’s lyrics. Much guesswork as to the meanings!
But, yes, my description obviously had meaning for me.
I enjoy your interpretations and you have insight.
We can all listen to the same song and get different meanings I believe. Just as Bible readers read and see things differently.
You and Dylan spent a lot of time together, lol.
I saw Iggy in concert many times. He was a homeboy.
I was aware of the Dylan-Guthrie connection and the “voice that came from you and me”
Not sure if the Shore song in the ad mentioned a levee
but it was part of a campaign encouraging “see America”...in a Chevy of course, “See the USA in Your Chevrolet”. (A MAD
magazine bit once showed some anti-pollution protestors and
one sign said “Spray the USA in your Chevrolet”). The lyrics I can remember are
See the USA in your Chevrolet
America is asking you to call
See the USA in your Chevrolet
America’s the greatest land of all
...is sweeter, life is complete-r in a Chevy
At one point we had some kind of lyrical songbook issued
by Chevy dealers, associated with this campaign. The idea
was to have the family sing folk songs, etc. (Dixie Land,
On Top of Old Smokey) as they drove or rode along.
Pretty car. When I think in terms of the topic car I imagine a more beat up looking car, lol.
- That is a photograph of a 1/24 scale diecast model of a *56 Chevy Bel Air convertible
- I swapped it with the first photograph I had posted of an actual full-sized 1/1 scale restored *56 Chevy Bel Air convertible -
I missed the first one then since you did it in the early AM.
Same body style and 2-tone paint colors
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