Gram Parsons, Betty Davis, and Neu! punctured the bloat of 1973

To commemorate 60 years of the Billboard Hot 100, Off The Charts revisits each year since it was established to spotlight songs and artists that didn’t make the cut, yet still made a significant impact. Years are chosen randomly and—to make it even harder on ourselves—rules for inclusion are that neither the songs nor…

Pulp, Team Dresch, and Autechre were the true alternative in 1995

To commemorate 60 years of the Billboard Hot 100, Off The Charts revisits each year since it was established to spotlight songs and artists that didn’t make the cut, yet still made a significant impact. Years are chosen randomly and—to make it even harder on ourselves—rules for inclusion are that neither the songs nor…

David Bowie, The Monks, and Steve Reich were buried under one of rock’s biggest years

To commemorate 60 years of the Billboard Hot 100, Off The Charts revisits each year since it was established to spotlight songs and artists that didn’t make the cut, yet still made a significant impact. Years are chosen randomly and—to make it even harder on ourselves—rules for inclusion are that neither the songs nor…

St. Vincent, No Age, and Yeasayer were the next wave of 2007

To commemorate 60 years of the Billboard Hot 100, Off The Charts revisits each year since it was established to spotlight songs and artists that didn’t make the cut, yet still made a significant impact. Years are chosen randomly and—to make it even harder on ourselves—rules for inclusion are that neither the songs nor…

Muddy Waters, Loretta Lynn, and The Phantom were the jukebox gems of 1960

To commemorate 60 years of the Billboard Hot 100, Off The Charts revisits each year since it was established to spotlight songs and artists that didn’t make the cut, yet still made a significant impact. Years are chosen randomly and—to make it even harder on ourselves—rules for inclusion are that neither the songs nor…

The KLF, Dead Moon, and some band called Nirvana were the bleeding edge of ’89

To commemorate 60 years of the Billboard Hot 100, Off The Charts revisits each year since it was established to spotlight songs and artists that didn’t make the cut, yet still made a significant impact. Years are chosen randomly and—to make it even harder on ourselves—rules for inclusion are that neither the songs nor…

The Stooges, Nico, and Swamp Dogg were the underground heroes of 1970

To commemorate 60 years of the Billboard Hot 100, Off The Charts revisits each year since it was established to spotlight songs and artists that didn’t make the cut, yet still made a significant impact. Years are chosen randomly and—to make it even harder on ourselves—rules for inclusion are that neither the songs nor…

The Rapture, Ladytron, and The Streets had the true hits of 2002

To commemorate 60 years of the Billboard Hot 100, Off The Charts revisits each year since it was established to spotlight songs and artists that didn’t make the cut, yet still made a significant impact. Years are chosen randomly and—to make it even harder on ourselves—rules for inclusion are that neither the songs nor…

Aphex Twin, Curve, and Jawbreaker had the best-kept secret hits of 1992

To commemorate 60 years of the Billboard Hot 100, Off The Charts revisits each year since it was established to spotlight songs and artists that didn’t make the cut, yet still made a significant impact. Years are chosen randomly and—to make it even harder on ourselves—rules for inclusion are that neither the songs nor…

Bauhaus, Run-DMC, Cocteau Twins, and other should’ve-been hits from 1983

On August 4, 1958, Billboard put Ricky Nelson’s “Poor Little Fool” atop a brand-new chart it dubbed the Hot 100. Prior to that, the industry had relied on a shaky system that aggregated record store sales, radio DJ spins, and jukebox plays to measure a song’s popularity. The Hot 100 finally put all of those competing…