Don McLean, America’s legendary singer and songwriter, will be awarded the George and Ira Gershwin Award for lifetime musical achievement on behalf of the Student Alumni Association of UCLA. In recognition of George and Ira Gershwin’s contributions to American music and in honor of their gift to UCLA, the UCLA Student Alumni Association established the annual George and Ira Gershwin Award for Lifetime Musical Achievement in 1988.
“I am such a great lover and admirer of the work of the Gershwin’s that to receive this award is a thrill,” said McLean. “In popular music the modernism of their music put them in a class by themselves.”
McLean will accept the award on Friday, May 17 at Pauley Pavilion in Los Angeles, during UCLA’s 2019 Spring Sing event. The 31st edition of the award is in recognition of the tremendous contributions McLean has made to the music industry throughout his career. Reserved for influential musical figures, past recipients include Tom Petty, Stevie Wonder, Frank Sinatra, James Taylor, Julie Andrews, Lionel Richie, Anthony Kiedis, The Who and last year’s recipient, Linkin Park.
“On behalf of UCLA, I am thrilled to present the 2019 George and Ira Gershwin Award for Lifetime Musical Achievement to Don McLean,” said Award Director, Isabella Dohil, “whose poetic lyrics have transcended time and remain a staple of American culture. Don’s contributions to music have been profound and he continues to capture audiences both young and old through his dynamic storytelling.”
McLean To Perform During Father’s Day Weekend Concerts At Elvis Presley’s Graceland
Memphis is recognized worldwide as the “home of the Blues” and the “birthplace of Rock ‘N’ Roll,” and Graceland’s Father’s Day Weekend Celebration lives up to those honors with multi-platinum singer/songwriter Don McLean and his chart-topping hits will perform on the Soundstage at Graceland on Saturday, June 15.
“I will be at Graceland for a Fathers Day concert and I will sing ‘And I Love You So,’ a song I wrote which Elvis sang during the last year of his life,” said McLean. “It also appears on his album, Today, released in 1975.”
Throughout the weekend, guests will be treated to tours of the iconic Graceland mansion, Elvis Presley’s Memphis™ entertainment complex and experience the brand-new Graceland Exhibition Center featuring three fantastic exhibits: Muhammad Ali: Greatest of All Time, Memphis Music Legends and A Century of the American Motorcycle. To purchase tickets, please visit GracelandLive.com/don-mclean.
Since first hitting the charts in 1971, Don McLean has amassed over 40 gold and platinum records world-wide and, in 2004, was inducted into the Songwriters’ Hall of Fame. Classic hits like “American Pie”, “Vincent (Starry Starry Night)”, “Castles in the Air”, “And I Love You So”, “Crossroads” and “The Grave” propelled McLean into the mainstream. Many of his songs have been recorded and sung by musicians from every genre, including Madonna‘s No. 1 recording of “American Pie” in 2000, George Michael’s rendition of “The Grave” in 2003, and James Blake’s version of “Vincent (Starry Starry Night).”
McLean recently honored the 60th anniversary of Buddy Holly’s death, and receiving Million-Air certifications from BMI for over 5 million certified airplays of “American Pie” and 3 million certified airplays for “Vincent (Starry, Starry Night),