BOStunes: Hear Local Music Next Time You Call City Hall

The city is turning the newly upgraded phone system into a place to showcase talent.

On the Phone Photo via

On the Phone Photo via

No more will strange elevator music pipe through the telephone when you call City Hall.

Officials announced Wednesday that they will be featuring local bands and talent, broadcasting their original songs through the phone when people are being transferred between offices, through a new program called “BOStunes.”

Although residents can speak with a live representative 24 hours a day when calling the city, music is played when a call is transferred. The program aims to replace the stodgy old tunes with ones recorded and submitted by bands from the area. “We think that music should be as uniquely Bostonian as you are,” according to a press release from city officials.

Since the city recently updated its phone system, officials thought it would be a good time to integrate the plan. “We’re turning our newly upgraded phone system into a place to showcase our talented local musicians,” officials said.

Between now and December 2, bands can submit original tracks to be included in the transfer music playlist. The city will promote them via their website and social media. Of course, there are some restrictions: at least one member of each band or group must live in Boston at the time of submission. Bands also have to keep it clean. The city is banning any songs that are profane or discriminatory in nature.

Finally, bands can’t cover other peoples’ songs and send them in. Each song submitted has to be original.

Within minutes of word getting out through BostonTweet, the hashtag to promote the contest, #BOStunes, was trending in Boston on Wednesday as bands kept trying to promote their music. “So many terrific submissions already—thanks, all! Keep [them] coming!,” tweeted DoItBoston, the organization sponsoring the initiative through social media. The Twitter handle is run by the Department of Innovation and Technology.

For additional rules and regulations about the program, visit the city of Boston’s website.