"Charlie on the M(B)TA"

In 1949, Jacqueline Steiner and Bess Lomax Hawes wrote "Charlie on the MTA" as the mayoral campaign song for the Progressive Party candidate in Boston. The witty lyrics tell the story of a man named Charlie who get's lost in Boston's decrepit subway system.

70 years down the road, 350 Mass volunteers rewrote the lyrics to the iconic song to highlight how much further the MBTA has fallen into disrepair under Governor Charlie Baker! An affordable, accessible,  reliable, and green public transportation system is what we need for justice in our communities and to transition to a clean energy future for all.

Watch the full video here!

CHARLIE ON THE MBTA

These are the times that try our souls. In the course of our nation’s history the people of Boston have rallied bravely whenever our rights have been threatened. Today a new crisis has arisen. The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, better known as the MBTA, has fallen into deep disrepair. Our governor made an appearance, but appearances are not enough! We need GOOD mass transit to address the climate crisis. Citizens hear me out…..Charlie Baker has been missing in action!

Verse 1

Let us tell you a story about Guv'nor Charlie

Who insists that he is Green,

But when climate leadership is really needed

Charlie's nowhere to be seen. 

Chorus 1

Well does he ever show up? No, he never shows up

(Unless there's a photo op).

He's a talk-the-talker, not a walk-the-walker.

He's the man who never shows up.

Verse 2

The Blue Line is flooded and the Orange Line is burning

The - Silver - Line's - a - bus

The Red Line's derailing and The Green Line is hopeless

Where the hell does that leave us? 

Chorus 2

The signals are broken

The cars are antique

But Charlie doesn’t care

The tracks are crumbling 'neath the streets of Boston.

And still they raise the fare!

Verse 3

To solve this crisis we need real solutions

A transit climate fix

Accessible affordable reliable electric

The only sensible mix

Chorus 2

The signals are broken

The cars are antique

But Charlie doesn’t care

The tracks are crumbling 'neath the streets of Boston.

And still they raise the fare!

Repeat Chorus 1

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