Musicians under O’Hare flight path lament ‘Highway Over Our Heads’

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The fight against excessive airplane traffic east of O’Hare Airport now has an anthem — and a music video.

The tune is called “Highway Over Our Heads” and it was created by Old Town School of Folk Music instructor Joel Frankel, 55, who deals with the rumbles and roars of airplane engines day and night at his home in the North Park neighborhood.

“It’s just intolerable,” Frankel said.

Here are a few lines:

“The highway jammed with silver jets

queued up in a never ending line

Some folks below heard the writing on the wall

started looking for a “For Sale” sign

So say good-bye to the peace and the quiet of the night

Say hello to the rumble and the roar

Say goodbye to the health of your family

Say hello to staying indoors”

The song catches the mood of the Fair Allocation in Runways Coalition, which seeks a more equitable distribution of plane traffic, the brunt of which began approaching O’Hare Airport from east last October. The coalition claims they didn’t have a voice at the table when the changes were being made and are calling for a more democratic process in resolving the issue.

“The song is a way to express what we’re talking about in music,” said Jac Chalier, who co-founded the coalition, an umbrella group that includes 22 neighborhood organizations.

“We’re going to move if we don’t get the results,” Frankel said.

“And I’m certain I speak for hundreds of families as well,” said Frankel, who sings the song with his daughter, Layla, who’s also an instructor at Old Town School of Folk Music.

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