I grew up in Southern California listening to the King, the Genius, Mr. Dynamite, Little Miss Dynamite, Mr. Excitement, the Bobbys Darin, Vee and Vinton, Dion, the 4 Seasons, the Beach Boys and more over radio station KFWB, and then to the Fab Four, the M’s of Motown: Marvin and Martha, the Miracles and the Marvelettes, alongside Mick (Jagger) and Mark (Lindsay) and Mitch (Ryder) and the Monkees over radio station 93/KHJ.  My first recollection of keeping track of songs played on the radio was in 1959.  Each time I heard the Everly Brothers sing “dream, dream, dream” I would tally the occasion in pencil on the side of my bedside radio.  That was my introduction to the oldies. 

I started collecting the KHJ weekly song surveys in 1965 and set aside Wednesday nights beginning in 1966 to write down their unveiling.

My first ranking of pop songs was of my personal collection of 45s.  That was followed by rankings of my favorite songs of the year for 1967 and again for 1968 off the KHJ Boss 30’s.  I used a simple ranking system which I applied to my own weekly “Top 18” lists.

I moved on to ranking the national hits using the Billboard charts in the early ’70s. 

At the end of the decade, my “Top 1000” of the ’70s was broadcast over local radio in the Coachella Valley in California.

Ranking the ’60s is my most recent and most ambitious ranking of pop music, the culmination of years of research while at National Central University in Taiwan where I teach in the Department of English.  It’s a fusion of my interests in history and culture, language, pop music and ordered lists.

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