Salina greets American Pie singer Don McLean before the start of the documentary

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“The Day the Music Died,” a documentary about the hit song “American Pie,” begins airing on Paramount+ next week, but Salina residents can hear Don McLean perform the song live at the Stiefel Theater on Thursday.

The 1971 song and its iconic chorus, from which the documentary takes its name, references a plane crash on February 3, 1959, which killed musicians in the early days of rock and roll. They were Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and “The Big Bopper” JP Richardson.

McLean’s show, which begins at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, July 14 at The Stiefel, is part of the singer’s “American Pie 50th Anniversary Tour,” commemorating the year the song reached No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, 1972 .

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The singer said he was excited to be back on tour, after taking time off due to the pandemic.

“After spending the past 18 months at home, I am thrilled to be back on the road with my band,” McLean said in a statement. “We’ll be performing all the songs from the ‘American Pie’ album as well as many other hits that fans will expect to hear.”

Some of the other expected hits are “Vincent (Starry Starry Night)”, “Castles in the Air”, “And I Love You So” and “Cryin'”.

“American Pie” has created a significant cultural impact and generated so much interest that the song was inducted into the National Recording Registry by the Library of Congress in 2016. The registry is a list of recordings that are, according to the FAQ on the library website, “culturally, historically or aesthetically significant.”

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Don McLean album cover for

In the documentary’s press release, Paramount+ said “The Day the Music Died: The Story of Don McLean’s ‘American Pie'”, which debuts on the platform on Tuesday, July 19, tells the story behind the song. of the artist himself and how the song became the icon it is to this day.

“McLean will, for the first time, powerfully reveal and share the secrets behind his iconic song,” Paramount+ said. “Furthermore, the documentary highlights cultural moments in America’s history that are as relevant today as they were in 1971, when the song was released. The film tells the stories of the people who have been part of this moment from the start and shows the perspective of a new generation of artists who are driven by the same values ​​and ideas that inspired the song’s creation.”

Tickets for the show were still available on the Stiefel’s website Wednesday afternoon.

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