Track of the Day: 'Lake Shore Drive' by Aliotta Haynes Jeremiah

Editor’s Note: This article previously appeared in a different format as part of The Atlantic’s Notes section, retired in 2021.

All you Chicagoans out there can probably relate to reader Max:

So, I’m a transplant to Chicago, and am sure that you will be inundated by songs about New York (my real hometown) and Los Angeles (where I spent my late 20s). While I don’t think any song can accurately capture a city in its totality, I think Aliotta Haynes Jeremiah’s “Lake Shore Drive” captures the feeling of driving on the iconic roadway in Chicago, at a particular time in the past. The blue lights and the concrete mountains all speak to the place as it was in the ’60s and ’70s. The blue lights are gone, replaced with bright yellow lights that produce the worst light pollution in the world (We’re #1, We’re #1). The area they were driving to is the Gold Coast, now called the Viagra Triangle … someone should put that in a song.

Or a web series:

Max adds:

Skip Haynes redid “Lake Shore Drive” after the Blizzard of 2011, which snowed in LSD. Love his version too.

Those lyrics are below:

Snowbound on Lake Shore Drive,
getting out of town.
Won't get my car back,
'til springtime comes around.

Thought that I would make it,
but oh boy was I wrong.
I'm sitting here on Lake Shore Drive,
singing this sad song.
I'm stuck in Lake Shore Drive,
'til a snowplow comes along.

There ain't no road just like it,
anywhere to me.
When I took Lake Shore Drive,
should have brought my skies.
I'm stuck here on Lake Shore Drive,
trying not to freeze.

It starts up north on Hollywood,
no one's gettin through.
Got snowed in half way home,
nothing I could do.
I hope they come and get me,
the snowplows make it through.
I didn't fill the tank before I left,
I would have if I knew.
I should have filled the tank before I left,
I would have if I knew.

There ain't no road just like it,
anywhere to me.
When I took Lake Shore Drive,
should have brought my skies.
I'm stuck on Lake Shore Drive,
trying not to freeze.

Someone help me please.

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