Bye, Bye, Miss American Pie

I’m sure that there are a few out there that remember the song “Bye, Bye, Miss American Pie” by Don McLean.

Living in West Texas, I was a big fan of Buddy Holly. When the plane that Buddy Holly was in went down, It was big news and sad news.

The lyrics of the song appear to have more meaning than I had previously recognized. Following is a YouTube video that brings back memories of a time I miss.

12 thoughts on “Bye, Bye, Miss American Pie

  1. Wow, I hadn’t listened to that for a while and it made me very emotional, the memories came flooding back. My older brother was a big Buddy Holly fan, so I heard plenty of his music, and then I was a child of the 60s. This song was a real watershed moment as well, as I think it marked the end of 60s music (basically 63-73). The UK went into meltdown around that time too.

  2. Two others died, Valens and the Big Bopper. Aircraft have figured in many famous deaths. This song is one that always stops me in my tracks.

  3. Though various internet sites may claim that the name of the plane Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and the Big Bopper were on was called ‘American Pie,’ this is untrue.
    Don McLean said so himself in 1999.
    He has always refused to explain any of the references in the song. (Maybe he was at least a little high when writing it — who knows?).
    The ever-reliable hoax-tracking site, in the following link, has an explanation of this and a few other false tales which have surrounded the deaths, and McLean’s song.
    American Pie is, as you point out, a great song.
    The fact its title does not/can not simplistically refer to the plane makes its lyrics that much deeper.
    The song can represent all the things in the video you linked to, and more, so like all great art it becomes more meaningful and enjoyable with each encounter.

  4. Great song, maybe we just put the icing on the cake with Panama now in chiriqui with the news coming out. If it is true about the kidnapping of the Dorado Center’s son for 500-600k. This would be the worst thing possible. I laughed at the police report at the end of the year. They mixed domestic abuse in with normal crime to fudge the data to make it look like crime dropped 20 something percent. Reminds me of the bush moment on the aircraft carrier. Mission accomplished. Especially for some of us with so much invested here in time and newly extended families. This is worrisome.

  5. The Snopes report supports the version of the legend in which Waylon Jennings cheats death by ceding his seat to J.P. Richardson.

    I went to Wikipedia to refresh my ageing memory about how Holly and Jennings got together in Lubbock.

    “Holly took Jennings as his first artist. He outfitted him with new clothes, and worked with him to improve his image.”

  6. There are endless stories about the crash:

    There are conflicting stories as to how Valens wound up in the third seat. Tommy Allsup, Holly’s guitarist, claimed that he lost a coin flip to Valens in the dressing room. In 2010, Dion DiMucci, who had been silent about that night for 51 years, claimed that he, not Allsup, was slated for the third seat because he was one of the headliners. But after winning the coin toss, he balked at paying $36 for the flight — the amount his parents paid in monthly rent for the apartment where he grew up — and gave Valens the seat. Local DJ Bob Hale, who was the MC for the concert, agrees that it was between Allsup and Valens, but that he, not Allsup, flipped the coin.

  7. But do you remember the flip side to that 45, it was called ‘Starry, Starry Night’. Supposedly about Vincent Van Gogh. I actually came to like this song better than ‘American Pie’.
    Starry, starry night.
    Paint your palette blue and grey,
    Look out on a summer’s day,
    With eyes that know the darkness in my soul.
    Shadows on the hills,
    Sketch the trees and the daffodils,
    Catch the breeze and the winter chills,
    In colors on the snowy linen land. Now I understand what you tried to say to me

    how you suffered for your sanity
    how you tried to set them free.
    They would not listen
    they did not know how

    perhaps they’ll listen now.

  8. I, my mom before me, and my grandma before all danced at the Surf Ballroom, the last gig of Buddy, Richie, and the Big Bopper. The Surf has a small monument, but I’m unable to post a photo. “The day the music died…” 🙁

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