Here’s Jill Stein’s Absurd Folk-Rock Song About Biking in Boston

streets of boston

Back in August, word got around that Green Party candidate Jill Stein was at one time half of a forgettable-at-best alt-folk-rock duo called Somebody’s Sister, which sounded like… well, a “barefoot Christian rock group striving to capture a Sheryl Crow vibe,” according to the Stranger’s Rich Smith. He is not wrong!

Somebody’s Sister somehow released four records full of vaguely protest-y, aggressively bland songs throughout the ’90s, including 1999’s Circuits to the Sun. You absolutely do not need to listen to it—or any of these records, or any of the songs on them—even once.

But! Should you choose to, might we recommend the seventh track on Circuits, “Streets of Boston,” which finds Stein crooning about how very relaxing it is to commute by bike here—meaning, of course, that she has almost certainly never commuted by bike here.

You can listen to “Streets of Boston,” which has exactly one specific reference to Greater Boston and otherwise sounds like it’s written about a woman biking down country roads in an advertisement for arthritis medication, here. And, because we’re gluttons for punishment, we listened to it (several times!) and have kindly transcribed the lyrics for you below.

She gets up in the morning
Drinks half a pot of tea
Puts on a long, white skirt
Socks up to her knees
Throws a poncho in her pack
Got her hair back, long and soft
Helmet strapped on her head
And she blasts off

You know what’s great? Getting your long, white skirt covered in grease after it inevitably becomes ensnared in your bike chain. This is an impossibly impractical cycling outfit—but at least she was prepared enough to bring a poncho!

Biking the streets of Boston
Biking to a better day
She doesn’t mind the rain or the shine
Gonna get there sometime
She don’t mind the traffic
She don’t mind the noise
Blazing a trail
Wheel and rail
Riding ’cause it’s her kind of joy

What is that SOUND Stein makes at the beginning of this chorus? HGGHH-BIKING.

[Ohhhhhhs]

Would it be a generic ’90s rock song without them?

Sweat on her forehead
Fumes in her eyes
Tail lights glow 
Vroom [??], they’ll go drifting by
Blazing through the traffic
Steady as she goes
Bumper-to-bumper, passing them by
Lemmings in their rows

Full disclosure: Not actually sure she says, “Vroom,” here, because she’s an adult woman and future presidential candidate and not a toddler playing with Hot Wheels. But it sure does sound like it.

Heading for the bike trail
Where raspberries grow
She knows something pretty in the pit of the city
Where sweet, wild winds blow

Where is this section of the bike trail?

Biking the streets of Boston
Biking to a better day
Davis Square, Chestnut Hill
While on Jamaica Way
She don’t mind the traffic
She don’t mind the noise
Blazing a trail
Wheel and rail
Riding ’cause it’s her kind of joy

Hey, those are neighborhoods in the Boston area with which we are familiar!

She’s out there in the sun and underneath the stars
On a roll, she’ll try to go, don’t get there in their cars
Bikers of the nation are the future generation
[???] 
But to her, it’s a salvation
Ridin’ through the streeeeeet and a sensation
Driven by the vision of a common liberation

Silver wheels are shining you can see her from afar
Hold on to your hat, here comes one less car

OH BOY, were you expecting that this would have a terrible rap verse at the end? We sure weren’t! What a way to cap this thing off.

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