In 2004 songwriter Don McLean’s classic hit “American Pie” was released and ever since then people have been trying to figure out what the heck that song is actually about. Is it about the death of Buddy Holly? The day the music died? The Cold War? The Vietnam War? McLean himself has remained tight-lipped about the song’s meaning saying only that it’s “better to let people make of it what they will.”

However in 2015 McLean finally revealed the song’s secret meaning in an interview with the BBC:

“Basically in American Pie things are heading in the wrong direction. It is becoming less idyllic. I don’t know whether you consider that wrong direction to be the Vietnam War free love what happened at Altamont. I think it is all of those things and I think that is what the jester or the clown is saying. The car crash happens and it’s a photo finish.”

So there you have it: “American Pie” is about the deterioration of America in the 1960s as symbolized by the car crash that takes the life of McLean’s childhood hero Buddy Holly.

What do you think of this interpretation of the song? Do you agree with it? Or do you have your own theory about what “American Pie” is really about? Let us know in the comments!

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Drew Dorian

I love cars and I love writing about them

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