February 12, 2015

Write Me A Story Daddy!

The other day, as per the typical norm, I was bored on my computer. Reading my blog subscriptions wasn't doing it for me, Facebook wasn't doing it for me, and I certainly wasn't motivated to actually WRITE a blog post. So I did what I usually do when I'm bored: I go on YouTube to watch music videos.

So went searching for a song, specifically a song which was cover of a Bee Gees song that I'd heard on the radio a week ago. First I thought it was done by Primus (because the band in question sounded like Primus) so off to a search I did go. Didn't find it, so I went searching for Bee Gee songs. Didn't find it either as I couldn't quite remember the snippet needed to find the song. But, while I was searching, throwing words together to form song titles, I somehow threw the words "American" and "Pie" together, and you can pretty guess what I came up with: multiple versions of the song.

However, I did come across a wickedly cool short film version of the song, which I would like to share with all of you. It's been one of my favorite all time story songs, and for those who don't know what a "story song" is, in a nutshell, it's considered to be both a good bathroom break song and the ultimate in flash fiction. I didn't realize it at the time, because I thought those kinds of songs were decently constructed, but decades later, they really were tightly compacted and exceptionally structured short stories. Harry Chapin was a very good proponent of writing those kind of songs (Cats In The Cradle and Taxi are two fine examples), and most artists have at least one song in their catalogue that qualifies as a story song, and at least one artist has built an entire career out of two versions of one perennial story song.

This one, however, has apparently spawned not only other covers, but interviews with other musicians who expound on the overall influence of this song to this day. You be the judge of the one song that Don McLean came to loathe so much that for years he refused to play it in concerts.



(c) 2015 by G.B. Miller. All Rights Reserved.

20 comments:

  1. One of my fave songs too. Cool little video! Obviously someone had access to a classic cars club!

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  2. Most definitely. After I got done watching it, I thought it was one of the best short films that I've ever seen. Love the little cameo of Don McLean at the very end there.

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  3. Did you ever find the song you went looking for?
    And have you ever seen Primus in concert? They're pretty good.

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    1. Sadly, I never found the song I was looking for. Next time, I'll have to be sure to write it down when I hear it so I don't get this frustrated again. No, never seen Primus in concert. The amount of concerts I've been to in my lifetime can be counted on both hands, and the bulk of those have been folk.

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    1. It's definitely a fun song to listen to and to sing to as well. Lots of pop culture references, both known and obscure.

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  5. Primus covering the BeeGees? Sounds novel.

    The "American Pie" film was nice. I'd like to see the entire film project it came from. The best video version of "American Pie" that I've seen was the promo for the city of Grand Rapids. There's no story, but logistically it's downright incredible. If you haven't seen it you can check it out at Grand Rapids Lip Dub. It starts out a bit slow so you have to stay with it to get the full effect of how amazing the way the thing was choreographed with a continuous camera shot.

    And yeah, many an hour has been whiled away on YouTube for me.

    Arlee Bird
    A to Z Challenge Co-host
    Tossing It Out


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    1. I was pretty sure it was Primus, but because they have such a unique sound, now I'm not.

      I will have to check that particular one out. Thanks for the tip.

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  6. This song was out when I was starting to play guitar so it was a must for everyone to learn and it had to be sung in every pub gig for years after. It's tough for writers of iconic songs to keep singing them. Dougie McClean wouldn't sing Caledonia for years for the same reason and people wouldn't book him if he didn't sing it ... But Ralph McTell has managed to keep singing the Streets of London in every single gig he's ever done.

    I can't watch and listen at the same time .... beautiful car at the start of that though ... I confess I didn't make it to the end.
    Fil
    Fil’s Place - Old songs and Memories

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    1. I feel bad for singers who have that one monster hit which makes them known, rightly or wrongly, a one hit wonder. A lot of artists who have huge smashes like that have a phenomenal body of work behind them, if only people would dig just a little deeper.

      I sometimes have that problem with certain videos as well too. :D

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  7. "I met a girl who sang the blues and I asked her for some happy news, but she just smiled and turned away..." One of my favorite lyric lines ever.

    I'll be back to watch the film - I'm on a roll with blog commenting and my iTunes playing.

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  8. Lots of memories for this old lady.

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  9. What a wonderful film! i was never that keen on the song but this movie was made by someone good

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    1. Certain songs lend themselves exceptionally well when produced as short film. "Thriller" by Michael Jackson is another good one as well.

      This was definitely a very cool song and movie.

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  10. Loathe? He loathed all the way to the bank on that song!

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    1. He certainly did. But like I said, some artists really hate to perform their monster hit, especially if it's their only one.

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  11. That song brings me back to my childhood. My parents didn't listen to pop music, so I picked up the hits of the 70s at my friends houses. Next door was Queen, Abba, and Supertramp. This song came from down the street, where they had a dog named Polly.

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    1. Ahhh, the days of BMJ Pop (that's Before Michael Jackson) when music was super cool.

      I had a weird childhood, in that I grew up on 50's, 60's and super early 70's music. Not rock, but classic country and folk.

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