I’ve been looking for a year-long blog project for a while, even before I heard about WordPress’ Project 365.  But when they started talking about it, I decided to go ahead and come up with a one-year blogging experiment.

I’m taking a walk through Billboard Magazine’s #1 pop songs… I was a weekend DJ for an oldies station (WBBT-FM/Richmond, VA) for 7 years, after all.  Back in the ‘80s, I actually collected every single to hit the Billboard Top 40 – that collection was sold off years ago, sadly.

So anyway, here’s what you’re going to see here.  Each day, I’m going to spotlight one song that reached the #1 spot on Billboard’s Hot 100 (or the predecessor charts) on that day in the “Rock Era” (between 1955 and 2011).   I’m doing it by Billboard issue date — which is about 10 days to 2 weeks after the song was really most popular, but you have to pick something… Billboard issue dates were Saturdays until the late ’50s, then Mondays, where they have stayed ever since.

What are my criteria?  A song that interests me, and/or gives me something to write about.  Not every post will be exclusively about the song of the day – some will tell stories tied to the song, or I’ll find something in the lyrics that allows me to wander off on a tangent.   They won’t all be long posts, or necessarily great writing… but if I keep doing it all year, they should get better…

There are some days where no songs went to #1.  To keep the blog-a-day momentum going, I’ll write up a song that went to #1 within a few days on either side of that date.  You’ll see what that means within the first two weeks of 2012.

Needless to say, the Billboard charts are copyrighted by Billboard Magazine and Nielsen Media Research.  As far as I know, this use of the data is a protected fair use – if Billboard thinks otherwise, we’ll all find out together.

The list I used was compiled by the Bullfrog’s Pond website.


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