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Lawmaker looks to make ‘Roadrunner’ Mass. state song

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Massachusetts has a state bird: black-capped chickadee. A state dog: Boston terrier. A state fish: cod. A state beverage: cranberry juice. And even a state bean: navy bean. But the Bay State does not have an official rock song. Not yet, at least. But that could change if a bill about to be submitted by Dorchester Representative Marty Walsh is passed. Word is the Democratic lawmaker, acting on behalf of Joyce Linehan, a friend, constituent, and well-connected arts publicist in the city, is set to propose that the 1972 Modern Lovers classic “Roadrunner” be designated the official rock song of the Commonwealth. Why? Well, it’s a great song; Jonathan Richman, the band’s singer, was born in Natick (and drummer David Robinson lives in Rockport); and the lyrics of the oft-covered song evoke a unique sense of place, with references to Stop ’n’ Shop, the Turnpike, “128 when it’s dark outside,” and “suburban trees, suburban speed.” All in favor, say “Aye.” “Aye.”

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