This post was supposed to go up on January 1, but real life got in the way. A friend passed away on December 30, and it’s taken some time to get through it and get back to reality.
I guess that leads to the first thing that amazed me about this project – nothing of that scale happened early enough in the year to knock me off schedule.
The second was that I completed it. I’ve started a lot of things that never finished. I undertook Project 365 in the fall of 2011 – with the research and song selection going right through New Year’s Eve 2011 – in order to prove to myself that I could actually complete something meaningful.
And I did. Yes, I did pre-post occasionally… around work schedules and a Christmas trip to see the family… but more than 90% of the posts were written on the day they were posted.
Not all of them were exactly masterpieces, naturally. But overall, I’m happy with how it came out. I’m not doing it again anytime soon – maybe in a year or two, but certainly not in 2013. I need that prep time back right now…
To wrap up the wrap-up, a few numbers…
Every year from 1955 to 2011 is represented by at least one song. The most songs came from 1974 and 1988 (15 each), and 1985 and 1986 (14 each). Yes, 58 of the 366 songs came from just four years. I can explain the ‘80s music, as that was when I really was into pop music. I’m not sure I can tell you why I picked so heavily on 1974. Four years were represented by one song each (1955, 1957, 2004, 2011). The year of my birth, 1963, got 6 songs.
As to artists, it should be no surprise that the Beatles had the most entries, with 6 (one that I had to pick as it was the only #1 song that day, 5 that I chose). If you add in solo Beatles and Beatles projects, there are a total of 14 songs (Paul 3, Ringo 2, Wings 1, George 1, John 1). Stevie Wonder, Whitney Houston, and the Rolling Stones got 4 mentions each – although Wonder gets a 5th as a “featured” artist.
The concept of “featured” artists made this a little more difficult – I used the designations from my research source (Bullfrog’s Pond’s compilation of the Billboard lists) to determine who the song artist was, for the most part. Generally, whichever artist released the album that contained the single got the credit. I only threw in the towel once, on the Brandy & Monica single “The Boy Is Mine” (June 6) as while Brandy’s album came out first (by a month), it was the title track of Monica’s album.
As you may recall, there were 7 days where no song ever debuted at #1. I took advantage of that to bring in 6 artists who I otherwise would have left out of the project (Avril Lavigne, Ne-Yo, David Seville, the Chiffons, Player, and Coolio). Yes, some of those were a challenge – and some were fun, like picking Player so I could mock the utterly-expressionless Ronn Moss again.
There were 43 days on which only one #1 song debuted – which included two “must use” songs each for Phil Collins, the Supremes, and Destiny’s Child.
There were 1075 songs available to me, of which I used (of course) 366.
And finally… although it really wasn’t relevant (other than making my choice more difficult), the day with the most #1 songs was April 21, with 8.
Thanks for following along. If you’d like to see more of my writing, visit my primary blog…
…and in the words of Casey Kasem, who used the Billboard listings for years to power American Top 40, “keep your feet on the ground, and keep reaching for the stars”. Take care.