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American Pie by Don McLean (All 868 Lyrics!)

There are 868 words in this 8:33 long masterpiece of songwriting. Can you name them all?
As you type in each lyric, all instances of that word in the song will be completed.
Any contractions or abbreviated words should be entered as a single word
Quiz by PapaFurchetta
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Last updated: March 6, 2024
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First submittedFebruary 11, 2021
Times taken7,229
Average score79.4%
Rating5.00
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Verse 1 & Chorus 1
A
long,
long
time
ago
I
can
still
remember
how
that
music
Used
to
make
me
smile
And
I
knew
if
I
had
my
chance
That
I
could
make
those
people
dance
And
maybe
they'd
be
happy
for
a
while
But
February
made
me
shiver
With
every
paper
I'd
deliver
Bad
news
on
the
doorstep
I
couldn't
take
one
more
step
I
can't
remember
if
I
cried
When
I
read
about
his
widowed
bride
Something
touched
me
deep
inside
The
day
the
music
died
So,
bye,
bye,
Miss
American
Pie
Drove
my
Chevy
to
the
levee,
but
the
levee
was
dry
And
them
good
ol'
boys
were
drinkin'
whiskey
and
rye
Singin',
This'll
be
the
day
that
I
die
This'll
be
the
day
that
I
die
Verse 2 & Chorus 2
Did
you
write
the
book
of
love
And
do
you
have
faith
in
God
above
If
the
Bible
tells
you
so?
Now,
do
you
believe
in
rock
'n'
roll
Can
music
save
your
mortal
soul
And
can
you
teach
me
how
to
dance
real
slow?
Well,
I
know
that
you're
in
love
with
him
'Cause
I
saw
you
dancin'
in
the
gym
You
both
kicked
off
your
shoes
Man,
I
dig
those
rhythm
and
blues
I
was
a
lonely
teenage
broncin'
buck
With
a
pink
carnation
and
a
pickup
truck
But
I
knew
I
was
out
of
luck
The
day
the
music
died
I
started
singin',
bye,
bye,
Miss
American
Pie
Drove
my
Chevy
to
the
levee,
but
the
levee
was
dry
Them
good
ol'
boys
were
drinkin'
whiskey
and
rye
Singin',
This'll
be
the
day
that
I
die
This'll
be
the
day
that
I
die
Verse 3 & Chorus 3
Now,
for
ten
years
we've
been
on
our
own
And
moss
grows
fat
on
a
rollin'
stone
But
that's
not
how
it
used
to
be
When
the
jester
sang
for
the
king
and
queen
In
a
coat
he
borrowed
from
James
Dean
And
a
voice
that
came
from
you
and
me
Oh,
and
while
the
king
was
looking
down
The
jester
stole
his
thorny
crown
The
courtroom
was
adjourned
No
verdict
was
returned
And
while
Lennin
read
a
book
on
Marx
A
quartet
practiced
in
the
park
And
we
sang
dirges
in
the
dark
The
day
the
music
died
We
were
singin',
bye,
bye,
Miss
American
Pie
Drove
my
Chevy
to
the
levee,
but
the
levee
was
dry
Them
good
ol'
boys
were
drinkin'
whiskey
and
rye
Singin',
This'll
be
the
day
that
I
die
This'll
be
the
day
that
I
die
Verse 4 & Chorus 4
Helter
skelter
in
a
summer
swelter
The
birds
flew
off
with
a
fallout
shelter
Eight
miles
high
and
falling
fast
It
landed
foul
on
the
grass
The
players
tried
for
a
forward
pass
With
the
jester
on
the
sidelines
in
a
cast
Now,
the
halftime
air
was
sweet
perfume
While
sergeants
played
a
marching
tune
We
all
got
up
to
dance
Oh,
but
we
never
got
the
chance
'Cause
the
players
tried
to
take
the
field
The
marching
band
refused
to
yield
Do
you
recall
what
was
revealed
The
day
the
music
died?
We
started
singin',
bye,
bye,
Miss
American
Pie
Drove
my
Chevy
to
the
levee,
but
the
levee
was
dry
Them
good
ol'
boys
were
drinkin'
whiskey
and
rye
Singin',
This'll
be
the
day
that
I
die
This'll
be
the
day
that
I
die
Verse 5 & Chorus 5
Oh,
and
there
we
were
all
in
one
place
A
generation
lost
in
space
With
no
time
left
to
start
again
So,
come
on,
Jack
be
nimble,
Jack
be
quick
Jack
Flash
sat
on
a
candlestick
'Cause
fire
is
the
Devil's
only
friend
Oh,
and
as
I
watched
him
on
the
stage
My
hands
were
clenched
in
fists
of
rage
No
angel
born
in
Hell
Could
break
that
Satan
spell
And
as
the
flames
climbed
high
into
the
night
To
light
the
sacrificial
rite
I
saw
Satan
laughing
with
delight
The
day
the
music
died
He
was
singin',
bye,
bye,
Miss
American
Pie
Drove
my
Chevy
to
the
levee,
but
the
levee
was
dry
Them
good
ol'
boys
were
drinkin'
whiskey
and
rye
Singin',
This'll
be
the
day
that
I
die
This'll
be
the
day
that
I
die
Verse 6 & Chorus 6
I
met
a
girl
who
sang
the
blues
And
I
asked
her
for
some
happy
news
But
she
just
smiled
and
turned
away
I
went
down
to
the
sacred
store
Where
I'd
heard
the
music
years
before
But
the
man
there
said
the
music
wouldn't
play
And
in
the
streets
the
children
screamed
The
lovers
cried,
and
the
poets
dreamed
But
not
a
word
was
spoken
The
church
bells
all
were
broken
And
the
three
men
I
admire
most
The
Father,
Son
and
the
Holy
Ghost
They
caught
the
last
train
for
the
coast
The
day
the
music
died
And
they
were
singin',
bye,
bye,
Miss
American
Pie
Drove
my
Chevy
to
the
levee,
but
the
levee
was
dry
And
them
good
ol'
boys
were
drinkin'
whiskey
and
rye
Singin',
This'll
be
the
day
that
I
die
This'll
be
the
day
that
I
die
They
were
singin',
bye,
bye,
Miss
American
Pie
Drove
my
Chevy
to
the
levee,
but
the
levee
was
dry
Them
good
ol'
boys
were
drinkin'
whiskey
and
rye
Singin',
This'll
be
the
day
that
I
die
18 Comments
+7
Level 91
Feb 11, 2021
I'm new to making quizzes on the site, so this one certainly stretched my abilities. Thankfully I was able to copy an existing featured quiz to get me past the 500 answer limit.

It is interesting to look at the answer stats to see which words have likely been "misheard" the most.

+3
Level 68
Feb 11, 2021
I forgot how long this song was lol
+1
Level 78
Feb 11, 2021
Almost broke my brain trying to remember all of the words. Didn't get them all.
+4
Level 84
Feb 12, 2021
I know there's some controversy on the internet, but I'm pretty sure the lyrics is supposed to have "Lennon" and not "Lenin". In general the song is about the 60's and 70's, most persons are representing real life musicians rather than politicians and specifically that part of the song mentions "for ten years now we've been on our own", meaning the late 60's after Buddy Holly's death, as well as "while Lennon read, the quartet practiced", which means the reference is current and not for the past. Also the quartet has often been interpreted as the Beatles. I think it has to be Lennon in that line.

Otherwise, awesome quiz!

+4
Level 91
Feb 17, 2021
Thanks for the comment! While the source I used had "Lenin" in the lyrics, I am aware that a good argument can be made that "Lennon" is correct. That's part of what still makes this song so compelling so many years after it was written. I have updated the quiz to accept "Lennon" as well.
+3
Level 75
Jun 5, 2021
I heard it was originally written as 'Lennin' to incorporate both names
+2
Level 77
Mar 11, 2023
This is true. If you check, say, this set of lyrics hand-written by Don McLean in 2016, it says "Lennin." He was well-aware of the ambiguity, and purposefully keeps it that way.
+6
Level 71
Feb 3, 2022
Personally, I'm guessing it's supposed to have a double meaning. Don McLean never acknowledges any of his characters by their names in this song, so why would he start with John Lennon? I think the lyrics are "Lenin" to keep with this pattern, but it's actually a thinly veiled reference to Lennon, who fits better with the 60s-themed lyrics (and with the next lyric, where "The Quartet" is usually thought to mean the Beatles). But, like you say @PapaFurchetta, this is what makes the song great--it's up for the listener to interpret!
+4
Level 71
Feb 3, 2022
Great quiz for one of my favorite songs! I'm a bit frustrated because I was so close to getting a perfect score but couldn't remember "started" :P But I'm still pretty proud of (mostly) memorizing such a long and complex song!
+3
Level 91
Feb 6, 2022
Congratulations! Yes, there are certainly a few tricky spots in this song.
+3
Level 65
Sep 10, 2022
Love the song, love the quiz, love the design! 5* from me
+1
Level 78
Sep 10, 2022
Maybe accept "Byrds" as well as "birds"? That line is definitely referring to them, as one of their songs, "Eight Miles High", is referenced shortly after.
+2
Level 91
Sep 10, 2022
"Byrds" is now accepted. Thank you for your input.
+1
Level 58
Oct 21, 2022
Fun quiz definitely nominating
+1
Level 91
Oct 21, 2022
Thank you for the nomination!
+2
Level 77
Mar 11, 2023
As Cog points out in another comment, the official lyric (as seen written here in McLean's own hand) isn't "Lenin" OR "Lennon," but "Lennin." He purposefully wanted to keep it ambiguous.
+3
Level 91
Mar 11, 2023
I'm a sucker for a well-sourced comment. Therefore, I have updated the quiz to "Lennin," but of course Lennon and Lenin are accepted as well.
+1
Level 57
Mar 19, 2023
I knew it was sargents but the spelling didn't match.