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Singer-songwriter, Don McLean. (Courtesy of David Abbott)Staten Island Advance

STATEN ISLAND, NY – This year marks the 50th anniversary of the iconic hit song “American Pie,” sung by singer/songwriter Don McLean which was recorded and released in 1971 on the album of the same name. The single was the number one hit in the United States for four weeks.

Staten Island CTV producer Denise Boland interviewed the legendary singer.

McLean, 76, sat down with Boland via livestream and explained how he was celebrating the song’s 50th anniversary with a world tour, children’s book, ‘Don McLean’s American Pie: A Fable,’ and documentary ‘The Day the Music Died: The Story of Don McLean’s American Pie” which traces the creation of American Pie and explores the meaning of the hit song.

Don McLean

Don McLean (Courtesy of David Abbott)Staten Island Advance

During their conversation, McLean spoke about the support his mother gave him and how his father never wanted him to enter the music industry. He was a loner as a child, absent from school for long periods of time, as he suffered from asthma.

It was his illness that drove him to write creative songs and his musical talent began to take shape.

He said how blessed he was and that he believed he had a “helping hand” in his career. “He’s never been caught in the downfalls that come with such stardom. He remained true to his moral upbringing and his deep love for his country. He’s Mr. American Pie,” says Boland.

Boland, who has a retro pop culture variety show on Staten Island Community Television called “Remember This with Denise Boland,” is expressing his lifelong love for not just the song, but the entire American album. Pie.

New York-born McLean’s other hit songs include ‘Vincent (Starry, Starry Night)’, ‘Castles in the Air’ and ‘And I Love You So’, Prince Harry and Meghan Markel’s wedding song .

“I’ve been listening to your album since I was 7,” she told McLean, then gave a thumbs-up painted like the one on her landmark album American Pie, in tribute to him. She said he let out a hearty laugh and jokes that everyone should get a thumb tattoo. “I love talking to you,” he told Boland.

McLean thrilled Staten Island fans in 2017 when he performed at the St. George Theater. “Everyone in the place sang every word to American Pie,” Boland continued.

In his documentary, which airs on Paramount+, McLean explains how he wrote the classic song in 1971 and confirmed the song references the 1959 plane crash that killed his idol, singer/songwriter Buddy. Holly.

He also revealed other hidden secrets of the song. A secret he didn’t reveal in the documentary was revealed in Boland’s interview. “I always wanted to know, the title is ‘American Pie’, but you sing Miss American Pie, is that a play on Miss America?” she asked.

Don McLean

Don McLean (Courtesy/Don McLean)Staten Island Advance

Fans can watch the interview for her response, on her show ‘Remember This with Denise Boland’, which airs Wednesday nights at 8pm on Fios Channel 35 and Spectrum Channel 79. She can also be seen on her social media platforms , Youtube : youtube.com/rememberthiswithdeniseboland or growl: rumble.com/c/denise.

Don McLean

Don McLean (Courtesy/Jeremy Westby)Staten Island Advance

McLean’s children’s book, “American Pie: A Fable” is available at amazon.com. For tickets to his shows, visit donmclean.com. Veterans get a 50% discount. http://www.youtube.com/rememberthiswithdeniseboland http://www.rumble.com/c/denise



Happy birthday Sunday to former city councilor Debi Rose, Jennifer Sammartino Mallen, Mireille Roti and Valentina Lara.

Happy Wedding Anniversary Sunday to Roseann and Mike Pollock.


Birthday wishes go to Joan Coogan, Mary Nielsen, Catherine Vanger and Michael Costa on Monday.

Monday is the wedding anniversary for Ilene and Charles Greinsky and Patricia and Bill Asley.


The best of birthdays Tuesday to Morgan Blayke Vazquez, Kirsten Schroeder, Amanda Marie Flack, Anne Riopi, Samantha Revello and John Meyer of New Springville. Known as the Java King, he is one of 42 coffee graders in the world. He is the third generation of coffee brokers in his family, following his father and grandfather in the business.

Happy wedding anniversary Tuesday to Barbara and Cosmo D’Aquila.


Wednesday is the birthday of Jack Stern, a solicitor from West Brighton, Michael Carpinello, Phyllis Aloi, Alexa Renee Portney, who is 14, Andrea Hills, Bobby Heaney, Paul Monforte, Geralyn Villani, Gina Marie Bariletti, Donna Tom and Elizabeth Sorgente.

Happy Birthday Wednesday to Jimmy Cassidy of Castleton Corners who turns 31 and holds a position at NYC Health & Hospitals Corp.


Happy birthday Thursday to John James Noone, Daniel Santapaga, Rebecca Zalkin and Kayla Sliger, who is 9, Nicole Leonardi Azarraga, MaryBeth Francis, Kathy Taylor and her cousin Agnes Rubino who celebrates her birthday on August 29 – who are the same l age of four days a year.


Friday is the birthday of Julia Kruse, who turns 29, Erin Aversa, who is now a “Sweet Sixteen” and her sister, Michaela Aversa, who turns 19 on September 1. Erin and Michaela are the granddaughters of the late Jerome X. O’Donovan and Vita O’Donovan.

Birthday wishes Friday to Dorothy Taylor, Victoria Nicole Falco, Robert Ricco and Joseph Golden.

Happy wedding anniversary Friday to Nora and John Rosati and Justine and Jon Cauldwell.


The happiest of birthdays on Saturday to Jianna Jackson, who turns 12, Tony Flagello, Lulu Chiminski and Mario Naccarato, who turns 28.