A shot from the music video for ‘American Pie’ by Madonna (Photo Credit: Screenshot of video via Madonna Official YouTube channel)

As many people know, there are some songs that are considered classics.  So when another artist covers a classic song, it can either turn out to be a hit (Whitney Houston covers Dolly Parton’s ‘I Will Always Love You’) or it could be a dud (Jessica Simpson covering Nancy Sinatra’s ‘These Boots Are Made For Walkin’’). 

One song that would be considered both, depending on who you talk to, is Madonna’s take on ‘American Pie’ by Don McLean. Released on March 3, 2000, ‘American Pie’ by Madonna was released as a single to promote the movie, The Next Best Thing, which starred Madonna, Rupert Everett, Benjamin Bratt, and Neil Patrick Harris. 

While the movie did not do well, the song hit its peak at number 29 on the Billboard Hot 100 and number one on the Billboard Dance Club Songs.  Don McLean, when interviewed by the Berkshire Eagle in 2015, said this about Madonna covering his song:

“I loved it. I thought it was outstanding. I thought Madonna did a great job with it. To me, she’s an artist for the 20th and the 21st century. She’s magnificent.”

Love or hate Madonna’s version of the 1971 classic, the music video for the song was ahead of its time showing same-sex couples kissing and holding hands at a time when the country was divided on gay and lesbian relations. The video also portrayed a diversity of Americans in the video at a time before the Bush/ Gore debacle.

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