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Inspired by a Chicago example, songs in the key of the DOE

The Chicago Public Schools employee in charge of running a Web site for the district’s alumni recently created an iTunes mix featuring music by Bo Diddley, Kanye West, and other famous CPS grads.

And the person who started the playlist is issuing a “playful challenge” to New York and Los Angeles to come up with comparable mixes, the Chicago Tribune reports.

What would a New York City public schools iTunes mix sound like? I didn’t actually create one, but I did come up with some musicians who got their starts attending the city’s public schools:

  • Tony Bennett, Art and Design
  • Harry Chapin, Brooklyn Tech
  • The Cleftones, Jamaica HS
  • Bobby Darin, Hunter College High School
  • Al Kooper, Martin van Buren HS
  • Thelonious Monk, Stuyvesant
  • Barbra Streisand, Erasmus Hall HS
  • Suzanne Vega, LaGuardia

What big names am I missing? A Stuyvesant alum compiled a list of albums by Stuy grads on Amazon.com, but does some enterprising soul want to curate an actual playlist for download? You’ll have to do it on your own, because the closest thing the DOE has to an alumni office is the Fund for Public Schools, and all it appears to offer alums are links to a handful of individual high schools’ alumni groups.