We All Know This Song
The song that made the 26-year-old McLean go to stardom very quickly – though it was difficult for him because the songwriter was prone to depression, he lost his father at the age of 15, and had to deal with a bad marriage during the time of the recording of this song.
The song became an instant hit, and it made him very famous instantly.
During an interview with NME Don McLean explained:
“I was headed on a certain course, and the success I got with ‘American Pie’ really threw me off. It just shattered my lifestyle and made me quite neurotic and extremely petulant. I was really prickly for a long time. If the things you’re doing aren’t increasing your energy and awareness and clarity and enjoyment, then you feel as though you’re moving blindly. That’s what happened to me. I seemed to be in a place where nothing felt like anything, and nothing meant anything. Literally nothing mattered. It was very hard for me to wake up in the morning and decide why it was I wanted to get up.”
In 1971, the single was the number-one US hit for four weeks in 1972 and also topped the charts in Australia, Canada, and New Zealand. In the UK, the single reached number 2, where it stayed for 3 weeks, on its original 1971 release while a reissue in 1991 reached No. 12.