Camden police arrest singer-songwriter Don McLean for domestic violence

Monday, January 18, 2016 - 8:00am
Don McLean (Courtesy Knox County Jail)

CAMDEN — Shortly before 2 a.m. Monday, Jan. 18, Camden police officers responded to a 911 call at the Camden residence of singer-songerwiter Don McLean. An investigation by responding officers resulted in the arrest of McLean for a charge of domestic violence assault.

According to Camden Police Chief Randy Gagne, McLean, 70, was arrested without incident and transported to Knox County Jail. He posted $10,000 unsecured bail and was released from custody a short time after his arrival.

Gagne did not identify the victim, and said that nobody involved required medical attention.

McLean is scheduled to appear in Knox County Unified Court in Rockland on Feb. 22.

McLean’s initial success came in 1969, when he recorded his first album, Tapestry. Two songs from the record made the charts, including Castles in the Air and And I Love You So. Two years later, he recorded American Pie and became an international star.

McLean continues to perform on occasion, most recently locally on Aug. 1 on the main stage during the 2015 Maine Lobster Festival in Rockland.

On April 7, 2015, CNN reported that McLean sold the handwritten lyrics and accompanying notes to his song American Pie at a Christie's auction that day for $1.2 million. Also according to CNN, the lyrics, "achieved the third highest auction price for an American literary manuscript, a fitting tribute to one the foremost singer-songwriters of his generation," said Christie's Tom Lecky in a statement.

In March 2015, McLean wrote a song and paid tributeto Camden resident Kermit “Kert” Ingraham, an affable senior known for sitting alongside the road and waving to passersby.

Reach Editorial Director Holly S. Edwards at and 706-6655.