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Music Editorial

donmclean19.jpg Imagine if he didn't do American Pie

The legendary US singer/songwriter Don McLean is playing Middlesbrough Town Hall in August and if he doesn’t whip out his most famous ditty then I’ll eat an actual American pie (and I’m vegan).

‘American Pie’ is not only one of the most enduring pop songs of all time (even surviving Madonna’s cover version), but also one of the most enigmatic. Pretty much everyone knows that “the day the music died” refers to the plane crash that killed Buddy Holly, The Big Bopper and Ritchie Valens, but what is the rest of it about? Morality? The counter-culture? Charles Manson? Who knows? When McLean was asked what it meant he joked: “It means that I don’t have to work again if I don’t want to.” Thankfully, he still loves working in the form of playing live and his 15thworld tour sees him coming to the region once more to regale us with all his classics including ‘Vincent (Starry Starry Night)’, ‘Crying’ (both UK number ones) and plenty more besides.

Don McLean, Thursday 29 August, Middlesbrough Town Hall, 8pm, from £37.50. middlesbroughtownhall.co.uk