2008-04-08 10:10:12 来自: 怀空 (择善固执)
American Pie,1971年，Don McLean,这个默默无闻的美国民谣歌手创作了这首影响巨大的American pie,一首长达8分34秒,堪称一首史诗式的作品.
第一段： DON开始就说出了他怀念旧时光，这就是他要写的内容：50年代。50年代的音乐适合起舞，节奏欢快，和六十年代的音乐完全不同。第二句写到的机会，就是指他自己成为歌手/作者后，依然想做这样的音乐。接着歌曲直接进入主题，说到了他还是个小报童的时候，见到59年2月3日的报纸头条都是BUDDY HOLLY飞机失事的事情，作为BUDDY的崇拜者，DON当时就被这个消息震惊了。HOLLY当时还有一位怀孕的新婚妻子，出事后不久流产。DON提到这个消息的时候就说自己不知道有没有哭。但是最令他记忆深刻的，当然是这个事情代表着50年代的音乐的衰落，这就是他最后一句用的比喻，音乐已死。飞机上有三个当时的流行巨星，BUDDY HOLLY，RICHIE VANLLENS，BIG BOPPER。
第二段： 第一句的“爱之书”是MONOTONE的一首热门曲，第二句则是指DON CORNELL的1955年的一首THE BIBLE TELLS ME SO（圣经告诉了我这些）。第三句指的是1965年LOVING SPOONFUL（爱匙）的一首歌DO YOU BELIEVE IN MAGIC（你相信魔法吗？）里面有一句歌词：这就象教一个陌生人摇滚乐。“当你起舞时我知道你爱上了他”暗指50年代中跳舞就意味着一种应承。后面一句唱出了当年的景象，人们爱在健身房里跳舞，而50年代中期布鲁斯开始流行。下面的粉色康乃馨也出自一首歌，MARTY ROBBINS1957的A WHITE SPORT COAT（A PINK CARNATION），白运动外套（一支粉色康乃馨）。最后PICKUP TRUCK（小货车）是有特殊的意义，在美国俚语里，这个词也指偶然认识的人，通常指的是有性关系的，这表明了DON长大了，在独立意识和性意识上的变化。
第三段： 10年是确切的指向，因为他写这首歌的时候是70年代，差不多离BUDDY去世有十来年了。“滚石长满……”这一句有很深的意思。首先，“滚动的石头不长苔”是句著名的英国谚语，ROLLING STONES乐队的名字即来自于此。其次，BOB DYLAN有首著名的歌叫做LIKE A ROLLING STONE（像一块滚石）一方面取自这个谚语，一方面也成为了DYLAN民谣生涯向摇滚生涯转变的记录。对民谣界的听众来说，这时的DYLAN意味着对民谣的背叛。歌词就有这个意思，说滚动的石头都长了苔，不再是原来模样，指的就是DYLAN变质。接着小丑就是指DYLAN，“为国王和王后演唱”一句指的DYLAN在为英国女皇演出时穿上了一件詹姆士迪恩的红外套。JAMES DEAN是美国那个年代的叛逆偶像，电影演员。他有件著名的红色外套，他也是DYLAN的偶像。“这声音来自你和我”说的是DYLAN原来唱的是民谣，民谣是为人民大众服务的歌。THORNY CROWN（多次的皇冠）是个比喻，指明星地位，这句话说的是DYLAN取代了猫王成为了美国的新偶像，下一句说明了他虽有这地位，但是没有占到统治的优势。下面开始说到音乐情况，“列侬读到了马克思”很有趣。一方面说明甲克虫的歌词取向开始转变，带有政治性，另一方面，列侬（LENNON）和列宁（LENIN）的英文发音相似，也有指列宁读到马克思的《资本论》开始了共产主义运动的意思。“四重奏在公园上演”是说1966年8月29日BEATLES的最后一次CANDLESTICK做的最后一次现场。
第四段：第一句的“夏天”指的是“爱之夏”。第二句里的“八英里之高却坠得很快”是说THE BYRDS（飞鸟）乐队出1966年出版的8 MILES HIGH，这是第一张因为歌词有毒品取向而被禁止的专辑。后一句“落在污秽的草上”是说乐队一个成员因醺酒被开除的事情。后面说了DYLAN在摩托车祸中出事而修养的9个月时期，很多乐队因演唱他的歌曲而出名。“如今的中场时期都是甜美的香”指的是60年代吸毒的风气和吸毒再做音乐的风气。“军士开始了实验之声”指的是BEATLES最出名的迷幻/概念专辑“胡椒军士孤心俱乐部”。下一句“我们准备起身跳舞……”是说BEATLES在CANDLEST的现场只演了35分钟就被禁止。而从那个时候起，以甲克虫为代表的新摇滚乐不再是可以跳舞的音乐了。“当其他的乐队想进入……”这里说明了BEATLES的伟大是没有人能相提并论的，“孤心俱乐部”成为绝对的经典。最后一句的“裸露”指的是LENNON的专辑“两个处女”，封面是他和妻子大野洋子的正面裸照，封底则是他们的背面裸照。
第五段：第一句“我们都在这个地方”说的是WOODSTOCK，“一代人迷失在空中，再没有时间重来”是说嬉皮士们浪费了自己的生命，沉迷在毒品中不能自拔。后面的“杰克”指的是滚石乐队著名65年热门曲“JUMPING JACK”，也指他们的CANDLEST现场。“火焰是魔鬼唯一的伙伴”引自滚石与甲克虫齐名的迷幻专辑“魔王陛下的请求”中的一首“对魔鬼的怜悯”。下一句就转入了对阿尔特蒙的现场的批判。那场免费音乐会因为雇佣了臭名昭著的飞车党地狱天使作为保安，在现场中他们杀死了一名黑人。“任何从地狱来的天使都不能解开撒旦的毒咒”说的是地狱天使在杀死黑人观众后开始殴打其他观众，场面变得混乱，而“对魔鬼的怜悯”据说是引发混乱的根源。 “火焰升入高空……”指最后滚石乐队不得不在混乱中乘直升飞机离开，这次演唱会也因为这些恐怖事件是成为了60年代爱与和平的美妙的终结。“这时我看到魔鬼笑得那么得意”是说殴打开始时JAGGER正昂首阔步地跳起了舞。
第六段： 第一句里的“唱布鲁斯的女孩”说的是JANIS JOPLIN，她死于1970年。下面的“著名的唱片店”可能说的是BILL GRAHAM的那间FILLMORE WEST，后来关闭。“店员”和我说的事就是50年代的音乐不再流行。下面“孩子”指的是花童，哭叫是他们与警察的冲突。“情人”则是指嬉皮士，诗人说的是迷幻音乐。再后面“教堂的钟声”说的就是那些死去的音乐家们。“圣父，圣子，圣灵”指的就是那在空难中去世的音乐人。最后一句“赶上最后一班去海滩的火车”则是说那个时候的音乐重镇已经移向加洲，西海岸了。
Released by Capitol Records in 2003. The American Pie album has been remastered and two bonus tracks (both from the original studio sessions) added. There are extensive liner notes, including Don McLean providing song by song notes. The accompanying booklet also includes lyrics to every song. Unusual cardboard packaging gives the feel of an original music LP.
All tracks composed by Don McLean unless otherwise stated.
Don McLean's "American Pie" has ripped out of nowhere and taken the country by storm both in its album and truncated single versions. It took exactly two weeks to shoot to the top of the charts, everybody I know has been talking excitedly about it since first hearing, and, even more surprisingly, it has united listeners of musical persuasions as diverse as Black Sabbath and Phil Ochs in unbridled enthusiasm for both its message and its musical qualities.
All of which is not so surprising once you've heard it, because it is a brilliant song, a metaphor for the death and rebirth of rock that's at once complex and immediately accessible. For the last couple of years critics and audience alike have been talking abut the Death of Rock, or at least the fragmentation of all our 1967 dreams of anthemic unity. And, inevitably, somebody has written a song about it. About Dylan, Buddy Holly, the Beatles, Stones, Byrds, Janis and others. About where we've been, the rush of exhilaration we felt at the pinnacle, and the present sense of despair. Don McLean has taken all this and set it down in language that has unmistakable impact the first time you hear it, and leaves you rubbing your chin -- "Just what did that line mean?" -- with further listenings because you know it's all about something you've felt and lived through. A very 1967ish song, in fact, in the way it makes you dig for deeper meaning, but not the least bit mawkish.
It opens with a slow, mournful sequence abut reading the headlines about the deaths of Buddy Holly, Richie Valens and the Big Bopper while delivering papers as a child, then into the chorus: "Bye bye, Miss American Pie/Drove my Chevy to the levee but the levee was dry/Them good ole boys were drinkin' whiskey and rye/And sayin' this'll be the day that I die." Then all at once it rears up and charges through the years in a giddy rush: "I was a lonely teenage bronckin' buck/With a pink carnation and a pickup truck," the "Book of Love," sock hops in the gym and puppy jealousy, and then into the heart of the myth, where Dylan is a Jester "in a coat he borrowed from James Dean," laughing at the king "in a voice that came from you and me."
The halycon days of Sgt. Pepper are brilliantly caught: "The half-time air was sweet perfume/As Sergeants played a marching tune," but suddenly the Jester is on the sidelines in a cast, the stage is taken by Jack Flash ( "Fire is the devil's only friend" ), and Altamont, the Angels and the despairing resentment the Stones left many fans pass in a dark panorama. Finally coming down to the levee again, where the good old boys are draining the bottles and talking as if it's all over, as they did when the plane bearing "The Father, Son and the Holy Ghost" fell and as they will again and again through the years. It's just the old Calvinist sense of impending apocalypse and perdition, but they're good old boys anyway and we can't resent them because we too "believe in rock 'n' roll/And [that] music can save your mortal soul." Because they're us.
"American Pie" is a song of the year, and its music is just as strong as those lyrics, propelled with special resonance by the piano of Paul Griffin, who played with the Jester when his myth was at pinnacle. If you've ever cried because of a rock & roll band or album, or lain awake nights wondering or sat up talking through the dawn about Our Music and what it all means and where it's all going and why, if you've ever kicked off your shoes to dance or wished you had the chance, if you ever believed in Rock & Roll, you've got to have this album.
William Ruhlman, All Music Guide wrote:
Don McLean's second album, American Pie, which was his first to gain recognition after the negligible initial sales of 1970's Tapestry, is necessarily dominated by its title track, a lengthy, allegorical history of rock & roll, because it became an unlikely hit, topping the singles chart and putting the LP at number one as well. "American Pie" has remained as much a cultural touchstone as a song, sung by everyone from Garth Brooks to Madonna, its title borrowed for a pair of smutty teen comedies, while the record itself has earned a registered three-million plays on U.S. radio stations. There may not be much more to note about it, then, except perhaps that even without a crib sheet to identify who's who, the song can still be enjoyed for its engaging melody and singable chorus, which may have more to do with its success than anything else. Of course, the album also included "Vincent," McLean's paean to Van Gogh, which has been played two-million times. Nothing else on the album is as effective as the hits, but the other eight original songs range from sensitive fare like "Till Tomorrow" to the sarcastic, uptempo "Everybody Loves Me, Baby." American Pie — the album — is very much a record of its time; it is imbued with the vague depression of the early '70s that infected the population and found expression in the works of singer/songwriters. "American Pie" — the song — is really a criticism of what happened in popular music in the '60s, and "Vincent" sympathizes with Van Gogh's suicide as a sane comment on an insane world. "Crossroads" and "Empty Chairs" are personal reflections full of regret and despondency, with the love song "Winterwood" providing the only respite. In the album's second half, the songs get more portentous, tracing society's ills into war and spiritual troubles in "The Grave" and "Sister Fatima." The songs are made all the more poignant by the stately folk-pop arrangements and McLean's clear, direct tenor. It was that voice, equally effective on remakes of pop oldies, that was his salvation when he proved unable to match the songwriting standard set on Tapestry and this collection. But then, the album has an overall elegiac quality that makes it sound like a final statement. After all, if the music has died, what else is there to say?
My brother bought this album when it was first released in 1972. After many repeated listenings over the years, it's still great. Some may say that it's "been goin' in and out of style" ala Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, but the fact is that American Pie never left it's audience so much as its audience left it. The fact that only one customer reviewer rated it at less than four stars is a testament of its staying power (and I might add, that reviewer falsely asserted that the full length version of the title track did not appear on this CD, which probably accounted for the low rating).
Sure "American Pie" is a rock classic and a staple of both classic rock and oldies stations everywhere, but the fact is that this album has so much more to offer. "Vincent", hardly the weak song that the Amazon.com reviewer rather stupidly portrays it to be, is a beautiful and lyrically rich tale of despair, loneliness, and disappointment. It's beautiful in it's simplicity. And many other customer reviewers have spoken eloquently about the shamefully overlooked "Sister Fatima" (which disappeared from reissues of the original vinyl LP but was restored in the CD version).
The song that moves me the most is "Empty Chairs", a wistful song of lost love and loneliness that is in my opinion the beautiful and overlooked track on this CD. Listening to it brings me to the verge of tears. For those of you fortunate enough to see Don McLean's recent PBS special "Starry Starry Night", special guest Garth Brooks performed a first-rate cover of this song.
"American Pie" withstands the test of time as a quintessential recording in the vein of many of Bob Dylan's earlier works. It deserves a place in the collection of anyone who considers his or her self to be a rock afficianado.
From what I could gather on the internet, this is supposedly the best sounding pressing of American Pie. It seems to be the consensus that MFSL fell down on the job with this CD, American Pie has the grand title of being the worst MFSL disc made, and the original vinyl sounds a bit muddy (judging from what others say, I do not own either one). It would seem that Doug Schwartz did it right with the 2003 remaster, no compression used, and not harsh, like many recent remasters can sound.
- Don McLean / vocals, guitar, banjo
- Warren Bernhardt / piano ( "Crossroads" )
- Ray Colcord / electric piano
- Tom Flye / drums ( "The Grave" ), engineering
- Ed Freeman / string arrangements
- Paul Griffin / piano ( "American Pie" )
- Lee Hays / arranger
- Mike Mainieri / marimba, vibraphone
- Roy Markowitz / drums, percussion
- Gene Orloff / concert master
- Bob Rothstein / bass, vocals
- David Spinozza / electric guitar ( "American Pie" )
- West Forty Fourth Street Rhythm and Noise Choir / chorus
01. "American Pie" 8:33
02. "Till Tomorrow" 2:11
03. "Vincent" 3:55
04. "Crossroads" 3:34
05. "Winterwood" 3:09
06. "Empty Chairs" 3:24
07. "Everybody Loves Me, Baby" 3:37
08. "Sister Fatima" 2:31
09. "The Grave" 3:08
10. "Babylon" (Trad., arr. Hays and McLean) 1:40
11. "Mother Nature" 5:11
12. "Aftermath" 4:03