American Pie

By: Don McLean

Verse 3

Helter skelter in a summer swelter

The birds flew off with a fallout shelter

Eight miles high and falling fast

It landed foul on the grass

The players tried for a forward pass

With the jester on the sidelines in a cast

Now the halftime air was sweet perfume

While the sergeants played a marching tune

We all got up to dance

Oh, but we never got the chance

'Cause the players tried to take the field

The marching band refused to yield

Do you recall what was revealed

The day the music died?

1: Charles Manson

"..Helter Sketler in a summer swelter.."


'Helter Skelter', a Beatles song featured on the 'White' album was claimed by Charles Manson that the song inspired him and that God and the Devil had spoken to him. He then lead his followers to commit multiple murders in the summer of 1969.

2/3: The Byrds and Youth Culture

"The birds flew off with a fallout shelter

Eight miles high and falling fast

It landed foul on the grass

The players tried for a forward pass"


The legendary rock group The Byrds wrote a song called 'Eight miles high' which became a hit, but wasn't able to play on the radio due to "drug lyrics". The Byrds denied any use of drugs of course, but were later arrested for possession of marijuana.


But these lyrics also relate to the Youth Culture ball payers who went against the government The authorities didn't take a liking to this and grew a fury of their own.

4: Bob Dylan

"With the jester on the sidelines in a cast"


On July 29, 1966 songwriter Bob Dylan was in a nearly fatal motorcycle accident which almost costed him his life. He was so overwhelmed that he had to put his passion on hold.

5/6: Summer of love and Kent State



This is the high point of the 60's. The counterculter movement, the brief Summer of Love. This marked the mid-point of the 60's and the cultural revolution gained momentum.

During this time the civil and military were getting heated.



And by the time of 1970 college students from Kent State were shot and killed by the national guard after protesting over the Cambodian campaign.

Chorus

So bye, bye, Miss American Pie

Drove my Chevy to the levee but the levee was dry

And them good ole boys were drinking whiskey 'n rye

Singin' this'll be the day that I die

This'll be the day that I die

7/8/9/10: Plane ride

The term 'American Pie' was used as reference to the beauty contest Miss America and the plane that crashed killing rock n' roll stars Holly, Valens, and Richardson.


The chevy was a very popular car used between the 50's-70's and still to this day and the metaphor for the dry levee is like the death of the American dream, which died close around to the ending of the 60's.


Buddy Holly released a song called 'That'll be the day' released in 1973


It was reported that Richardson and Holly were drinking whiskey on the night of their crash, but nothing has been proved.