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Posted by: Brother Of Jerry ( )
Date: February 08, 2019 04:43PM

...on that tragic and fateful day...

Jacqueline Steiner, 94, lyricist for "Charlie on the MTA", has passed away. I have never heard of her, unfortunately, but that Kinston Trio hit from 1959 was perhaps my first introduction to folk after a decade of pop and rock and roll. Before the folk rock of Dylan, CSN(&Y), etc, there was Charlie.

For those not familiar, the song was a light-hearted political protest about a fare increase on the Boston Metropolitan Transit Authority - the MTA. Charlie was short a nickel, and couldn't get off of that train. He never returned, no, he never returned, and his fate is still unlearned. (poor old Charlie) He will ride forever 'neath the streets of Boston. He's the man who never returned.

The Kinston Trio version opens with a 3 part banjo-guitar lick that is sprinkled with dissonant notes, which became instantly recognizable when you heard them again - you knew what was coming.

According to her NYTimes obit, when subway tokens were eliminated from the MTA, and replaced with a scannable card, it was (and still is) know as the CharlieCard. Then governor Mitt Romney joined the Kinston Trio in a rousing chorus to kick off the new card. IMHO, if there is any immortality in this world, Ms Steiner achieved it with Charlie.

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/02/05/obituaries/jacqueline-steiner-dead.html



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/08/2019 04:45PM by Brother Of Jerry.

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Posted by: 3X ( )
Date: February 08, 2019 07:53PM

keyboard glitch?


"Kingston Trio" - I remember them well ...

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Posted by: Brother Of Jerry ( )
Date: February 09, 2019 07:28AM

Yep, exact same typo twice in one post. What are the odds? :-/

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Posted by: 3X ( )
Date: February 09, 2019 07:31PM

Actually, it's 3 times - but who's counting, eh?


:)

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Posted by: Brother Of Jerry ( )
Date: February 09, 2019 09:22PM

I think I made one typo and became a victim of renegade autocorrect. Somehow this is Bill Gates' fault, even if I am on a Mac.

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: February 09, 2019 08:02PM

Reply to BoJ.

No one remembers Pete Seeger? It seems to me that there was a rich folk tradition from at least the Depression. . .

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Posted by: Brother Of Jerry ( )
Date: February 09, 2019 09:28PM

I almost mentioned Pete Seeger in the original post, but the Kingston Trio, followed soon after by Peter Paul and Mary were the first folkies I was aware of. I grew up listening to Cousin Brucie Morrow at WABC in NYC. He didn't play a lot of Seeger. :)

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Posted by: 3X ( )
Date: February 09, 2019 09:33PM

Mary Travers - can you believe almost 10 years since her death?

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Posted by: caffiend ( )
Date: February 08, 2019 08:56PM

For those too young or denizens west of the Berkshires, this is the ballad:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kacASNARakQ

I'm old enough to remember paying the nickle upon debarking the train. Here's how it worked: you entered the system in the city (subway) tunnels, paying with a token. Three Green Line trolley branches climbed to street-level service, and you had to pay a 5-cent surcharge for that extra mileage. Not everybody paid--it was unenforceable.

"Charlie's wife goes down to the Sculley Square Station, at quarter past two,
And through the open window she hands Charlie a sandwich as the train comes rumbling through!"

Q-1: Why did she hand him a sandwich, instead of a nickle? Considering she had to pay a token to enter the station?

Q-2: Sculley Square (now "Government Center" was the down-and-out district--bars, cheap hotels, red light district, etc. What was his wife doing in Sculley Square?

I was just down at Boston City Hall, dubbed "the ugliest building in the country." (Google it.) I found two services I needed with "new, improved" fees. So typical of Taxachusetts: everytime you turn around, a fee, tax, fine or service has been raised.

Standard invitation to RfM-ers to look me up, should you come to Beantown. I'll buy you a Dunkin Donuts Coffee, and show you the sites!

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Posted by: 3X ( )
Date: February 08, 2019 09:06PM

"...should you come to Beantown. I'll buy you a Dunkin Donuts Coffee"

No beer in Beantown?

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Posted by: caffiend ( )
Date: February 08, 2019 11:09PM

Not only will I take you to the original Sam Adams brewery,* but I'll let you drink all my free samples!

*This brewery is now primarily for product research and development, plus special commemorative or honorific batches.

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Posted by: 3X ( )
Date: February 09, 2019 07:37PM

Actually, got my own brew-pub a short walk away, sqrt(2,025) mins west of yrself, as crow-dog flies.

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Posted by: Backseater ( )
Date: February 09, 2019 01:35AM

although I didn't realize until just now that it was the Kingston Trio. The radios played it over and over again until our parents were sick of it. Some others from that era were "Tom Dooley," and "Thunder Road."

Good times, about halfway between Korea and Viet Nam.

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Posted by: Topper ( )
Date: February 09, 2019 03:01AM

Well, how about that! Brings back memories.

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Posted by: Jersey Girl ( )
Date: February 09, 2019 09:14AM

I had that Kingston Trio album when I was in High School and know most of the words to that song and others. I moved on to Dylan, Joan Baez, Judy Collins, Dave Von Ronk etc.

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Posted by: presleynfactsrock ( )
Date: February 09, 2019 07:22PM

Love that song, and folk songs in general. Thanks for the interesting post. Boston is on my bucket list (come on ole bones, you got to wait to completely fall apart until after I make it there) and Caffiend would love to have a guide and drink.

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Posted by: caffiend ( )
Date: February 09, 2019 07:56PM

It's a standing invitation to one and all. Admins are good at helping us connect upon request. (Note: Amyjo, I'd love to hear from you.)

3X: I raise my coffee mug to you, 2/3 the continent to your East.

I've driven for a living all my working life: construction, tractor-trailer (still have my Class A), postal trucks,* city cop. I'll give you a tour to shame the Duck Boats!

*I was actually a very "gruntled" postal worker.

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Posted by: 3X ( )
Date: February 09, 2019 08:20PM

3X: I raise my coffee mug to you, 2/3 the continent to your East.


Better check your math, jarhead :)

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Posted by: caffiend ( )
Date: February 09, 2019 08:34PM

Assuming your 2,000 miles away, that puts you somewhere in the Intermountain West, i.e. Utah?

Boston to Salt Lake is about 2,000, to San Francisco is about 2700 miles. Close enough to 2/3, I (mis)figure. Regardless, 3X, I can feel your vibes.

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Posted by: 3X ( )
Date: February 09, 2019 08:56PM

Wrong unit of measurement.


Does CZ have an email address for you?



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/09/2019 08:57PM by 3X.

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Posted by: caffiend ( )
Date: February 09, 2019 09:03PM


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Posted by: caffiend ( )
Date: February 09, 2019 09:05PM


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Posted by: 3X ( )
Date: February 09, 2019 09:14PM

I sent email to CZ - he presumably will forward it to yourself when he has time to do so - maybe tomorrow?

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: February 09, 2019 08:00PM

Wrong place



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/09/2019 08:01PM by Lot's Wife.

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Posted by: sbg ( )
Date: February 09, 2019 09:33PM

Just finished watching PBS special on PP&M. It amazes me that their music is a relevant today as it was in the 1960’s.

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