Don McLean Once Reacted to Madonna’s Widely Hated Cover of ‘American Pie’

Madonna once covered Don McLean‘s “American Pie.” Subsequently, McLean revealed what he thought of the cover. He also reacted to a poll that claimed Madonna’s “American Pie” was the worst cover song ever.

Madonna sitting in a chair
Madonna | Virginia Sherwood/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images

Madonna covered Don McLean’s ‘American Pie’ for a movie soundtrack

In addition to making some of the most famous pop songs ever, Madonna appeared in several films. For example, she starred in a courtroom drama called The Next Best Thing. The film features “American Pie.” Madonna covered the track for the movie’s soundtrack.

During a 2021 interview with UK Music Reviews, McLean discussed the cover. “Well, you really couldn’t ask for a better present anywhere in the world than to have Madonna do what she did with that song,” he said. “She put it out two different ways; she had it played on three different times in the movie that she made. So for me it was just this enormous gift from this humongous star.”

McLean also discussed the music video the Queen of Pop made for her cover of “American Pie.” “The video that Madonna made to accompany the song was one of the most famous videos that she ever made,” he opined. “That video is the thing that people remember.”

Don McLean reacted to a BBC poll that trashed the Queen of Pop’s cover

McLean reacted to a BBC Radio 6 Music poll that deemed Madonna’s cover the worst cover song ever. “Really, the worst one, oh Jesus I don’t know,” McLean said. “There really must be some awful ones out there (laughter).”

McLean shrugged off the poll. “To be honest, I don’t care about Radio 6 and what they say,” he revealed. “The thing about it is, any song of mine that gets used by people as long as it is appropriate and reasonably civilized, I think is funny or if it is really good, it really doesn’t bother me.”


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How Madonna’s ‘American Pie’ performed on the charts in the United States and the United Kingdom

Madonna’s “American Pie” became a modest hit in the United States. The track reached No. 29 on the Billboard Hot 100. For nine weeks, Madonna’s “American Pie” stayed on the chart. The cover appeared on some editions of the album Music. The album topped the Billboard 200 for one of its 55 weeks on the chart.

The cover was far more popular in the United Kingdom as well. According to The Official Charts Company, the song topped the chart for one week in the U.K. It spent 18 weeks on the chart in total. Meanwhile, Music was No. 1 for two of its 73 weeks on the chart.

Madonna’s “American Pie” incurred some backlash but McLean was a fan of it.