President Biden Presents President Yoon With A Special Gibson Guitar Signed By Don McLean
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Well, it turns out South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol can sing. At the end of a festive dinner at The White House on Wednesday, President Joe Biden, first lady Jill Biden, President Yoon, and his wife, Kim Keon Hee, moved from the East Room to the State Dining Room for the entertainment part of the evening, a string of professionally performed Broadway musical numbers.
After Broadway stars sang a handful of soaring pieces, Jill Biden announced a special encore: a serenade by the singers of the Don McLean anthem “American Pie,” which is a Yoon favorite. It didn’t end there. When the singers finished, President Biden and President Yoon took the stage and Biden invited Yoon, because of his love of the song, to give it a whirl himself.
Yoon did just that, taking a mic and belting out the first stanzas of the song, in English and in tune, while an astounded Biden and a delighted crowd, including actor Angelina Jolie, looked on.
“Something touched me deep inside, the day the music died,” he finished, sparking a standing ovation and loud applause from the audience and the Broadway singers, who were still on stage.
“I am honored that The White House had invited me to be at the event, however, I am in Australia on tour and could not be in two places at once,” says American Pie’s singer/songwriter Don McLean. “What a moment last night was, as I watched the video clips. I wish I could have been there, but there always is a next time. I hope President Yoon learns how to play the guitar that I signed so when we meet, in the future, we can do the song together!”
Biden told Yoon he had “no damn idea” he could sing, and then presented him with a Gibson guitar signed by Don McLean, who wrote the song.
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About Don McLean
Don McLean is a legendary singer-songwriter known for his timeless classics that have captured the hearts of audiences worldwide. With a career spanning several decades, he has left a lasting impact on the music industry and continues to inspire new generations of artists. McLean’s songs are known for their poetic lyrics and emotional depth, reflecting universal themes of love, loss, and the American experience. His music has a timeless quality that appeals to listeners of all ages, transcending cultural and generational divides. Don McLean’s contributions to the world of music will always be remembered and celebrated, and his songs will continue to be cherished for generations to come.
Don McLean is a Grammy award honoree, a Songwriter Hall of Fame member, and a BBC Lifetime Achievement Award recipient, his smash hit “American Pie” resides in the Library of Congress National Recording Registry and was named a top 5 song of the 20th Century by the Recording Industry of America (RIAA). A New York native, Don McLean is one of the most revered and respected songwriters in American history. After paying his dues in the New York club scene in the late ‘60s, he went on to score mega-hits like “Vincent (Starry, Starry Night),” “Castles in the Air” and many more. His catalog of songs has been recorded by Madonna, Garth Brooks, Josh Groban, Drake, “Weird Al” Yankovic, and countless others. In 2015, McLean’s handwritten manuscript of the lyrics to “American Pie” was auctioned by Christies, selling for just over $1.2 Million. 2019 honored Don with a star on the Las Vegas Walkway of Stars and his song “And I Love You So” was the theme for Prince Harry and Megan Markle’s wedding. Don landed a new recording contract with Time Life in 2020, with whom he released a catalog of recordings as well as a new album Still Playin’ Favorites. 2021 brought Don’s “American Pie” features in the Avengers’ Black Widow and the new Tom Hanks movie Finch. Don received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, celebrated the 50th anniversary of “American Pie,” recorded a version of the song with a cappella group Home Free, a children’s book has been written, and much more! And when you think things are slowing down, not so for Don McLean!
South Korean President #YoonSukYeol sings @thedonmclean’s #AmericanPie for stunned @WhiteHouse #StateDinner audience