Bye-Bye, 'American Pie': Manuscript Sold for $1.2M

Don McLean manuscript and notes scooped up at Christie's auction
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Apr 7, 2015 12:23 PM CDT
Bye-Bye, 'American Pie': Manuscript Sold for $1.2M
In this Juy 3, 2012, file photo provided by the Las Vegas News Bureau, Don McLean performs in Las Vegas.   (Photo/Las Vegas News Bureau, Darrin Bush)

Singer-songwriter Don McLean's original manuscript and notes to "American Pie" have been sold at auction for $1.2 million. McLean offered the wistful anthem that asks, "Do you recall what was revealed the day the music died?" at Christie's today; the 16 pages included the original working manuscript and typed drafts of the song. The name of the buyer was not released.

The eight-minute-long "American Pie" was released in 1971 and was a No. 1 US hit for four weeks in 1972. "The day the music died" refers to the Feb. 3, 1959, deaths of Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and JP "Big Bopper" Richardson in a plane crash. McLean, a longtime Maine resident, says writing the song was "a mystical trip into his past." (More Don McLean stories.)

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