Tag Archives: cta

The Talkin’ Red Light Blues

The More Things Change…

So, I caught this report about red light traffic cameras on the news the other day. And, at first, I kind of laughed to myself. HA HA HA Mayor Rahm screwing up again! But then I was like, “Hey, wait a minute, wasn’t this an issue back in 2009? Didn’t I write a song about something like this?”

The Talkin' Red Light Blues
A city of Chicago worker making the city a safer place.

Yeah. I did. Here it is.

Now, Rahm was not Mayor of Chicago back then, so CTA buses speeding through red lights and getting tickets from red light cameras installed by His Holiness Mayor Daley really can’t be blamed on him.

Oh, wait. Oops.

So, nothing has changed, except that Mister Mayor himself got caught by the cameras this time. And not just the red light cameras, but also the speed-trap cameras that he had installed. HILARIOUS.

Seriously, did you read this article? READ IT.

“No one is above the law.” (Unless no one notices.)

Mayor Emanuel wants the city to be SAFER, so he installed cameras to make us all drive slower. But he’s got a city to run, okay? Get out of his way.

So you see, I had to do a rewrite of the Talkin’ CTA Bus Blues. HAD TO.


Hey! You can now download this song by clicking here.

The Talkin’ CTA Blues (Rahm Emanuel Version)

Same Old, Same Old

Well, this is another Chicago-inspired tune that I wrote several years ago. In 2008! But, the more things change, the more they stay the same, right? The CTA is still crashing trains, but instead of Mayor Daley making things right, we’ve got Rahm Emanuel.

The Talkin' CTA Blues (Rahm Emanuel Version)
In Chicago, infrastructure is priority number one.

I wrote the original version about a CTA crash on the blue line, but since there was just recently this one (or, even this one that I saw happen), I figured I better update the song a little. You can read about the original version and listen to it here. Or, if you feel like supporting a local musician, buy the song here. You’ll notice the differences.

For one, Chicago isn’t trying to get the Olympics any more, but Mayor Rahm does want to use our hard earned dollars and change to build a shiny basketball arena for DePaul University. They MUST need it bad, huh? Go ahead and read up on it. The Chicago Reader always has some good points.

Anyway, I always enjoyed this song. Singing it, performing it. I’m adding it back into my lineup. Maybe you’ll catch a show where I play it sometime soon?

Hey! You can now download this song by clicking here.

Homeless Escape: The Talkin’ Headline Blues #120

The Talkin’ Headline Blues is a weekly series of recordings using unedited headlines from CNN.com written as a song. This week’s topic: Homeless Escape.

Homeless Escape: The Talkin' Headline Blues #120

In the Russia, you wreck your cow.
Fourteen team circus escape.
Heat when homeless.
Gym at boyfriend.

Next live show at Beat Kitchen on Friday, April 4 at 8pm with the Dirty Generals. For FREE tickets, go here.

The Talkin’ Headline Blues #95

The Talkin' Headline Blues #95

Well. That was surprisingly easy even though my bones and skin feel reversed and my head is somewhere floating behind my body. (I’m talking about THIS.)

Maybe it was SO SIMPLE, though, because these CNN.com headlines were written so well. THANKS CNN. You’re THE BEST. You make everything sound so ridiculous that I don’t even have to worry about any of it being real.

It’s not real, right? CNN.com turned into the Onion, right? Pure satire, right? Because these headlines CAN’T be actual news.

Or, wait…I did get stuck on Interstate 290 heading out of Chicago Monday morning because of a…train crash. UH OH.

But maybe that’s the only real news item, right? RIGHT!? Please tell me yes. I can’t deal with anything serious right now, okay?

Song Post: The Talkin’ CTA Blues

Songs from Someone Else’s Perspective Week


Here’s a song I wrote a few years back. It’s a true story. So true that when I play this song out I usually tell people it happened to me. It felt like it happened to me. Here’s what actually happened.

But, then again, you could just search for “CTA Blue Line Crash” and you’d come up with a thousand different examples, the most recent being this: http://www.wgntv.com/wgntv-blue-line-smoke-aug28,0,5246199.story

Anyway. It’s a funny song about a sad thing. It’s almost as funny as this article: http://news.medill.northwestern.edu/chicago/news.aspx?id=155614

Finally, Chicago is tops in something.

So I took the point of view of someone on the train. But, really, we were all on that train because we all ride every train and if you haven’t yet been in a CTA accident then you surely will soon.

The Talkin’ CTA Blues is also on my new album “It’s Chicago!” that just came out on August 10. You can buy and download either just this one song or the entire album, which is all about Chicago, at CDBaby.com or through iTunes.

Or, you can always come out and see a live show and I’ll have real, touchable CD albums.

Hope ya like it.