Musicians Pen "Charlie On The MTA" Parody Inspired By Orange Line Shutdown

Photo: Matt Shearer/WBZ NewsRadio

BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — A group of local musicians is putting its own spin on a classic song about the MBTA ahead of the impending month-long Orange and Green Line shutdowns.

Jacob Deck, Ben Rechel, Anna Seda, and Laura Bigler teamed up to create their own version of the Kingston Trio classic "Charlie On The MTA", a song that tells the tale of a man named Charlie who gets stuck on the then-called MTA because he can't afford the fare to get off the train.

In the new parody version, the fictional Charlie is replaced with Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker and tells the story of the state's plan to shut down the entire Orange Line and part of the Green Line for a month in August, asking if the Orange Line "will ever return".

“Let me tell you a story about a man named Charlie on a tragic and fateful day," the group sings. "He got driven to his office, gave a speech and took some photos, then he shut down the MTA.”

Deck and Rechel teamed up with Seda to perform the song at Back Bay station. Seda filmed a TikTok of their performance and it quickly garnered thousands of views. Rechel told WBZ's Matt Shearer he was surprised how popular it got.

"Little did we know how robust the Boston satire section of Twitter is," Rechel said.

The song got so popular, in fact, that they decided to hold a second performance at Back Bay Station on Tuesday night. Bigler said she hopes the message of the song resonates with those in charge of the MBTA.

"Every day people need these trains and if they're not running then how are we going to get to work?" Bigler said.

Read More: Orange Line Shutdown Puts Tufts Medical Center Staff In Tight Spot

The Orange Line will shut down Friday, Aug. 19 for 30 days to help replace over 3,500 feet of track. The Green Line will shut down from Union Square to Government Center two days later and reopen at the same time as the Orange Line to allow for various improvements and work on the Medford Branch of the Green Line Extension. The MBTA plans to use shuttle buses to replace service.

Although he sings asking if service will ever return, Rechel said he understands it will take time to get the work done.

"I know everyone is trying their best and the T is understaffed," Rechel said. "We'll be patient."

WBZ's Matt Shearer (@MattWBZ) reports.

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