Beyond Radio is the place where music discovery and music nostalgia collide. It is your one-stop source for playlists, music charts, remembrances and recommendations. Our Podcast and music therapy playlists combine elements of nostalgia and discovery, while my blog entries reflect on our musical past through the lens of my personal charts from decades past. I weave a story that includes the connection between artists, chart facts and personal anecdotes that hopefully conjure a connection to the soundtrack of your own life. The current charts and playlists are updated monthly or bi-monthly (bi-weekly for the BR250) and are curated based on a passionate audience that produce their own personal charts weekly.
In these episodes an overarching theme about searching for a higher plane/higher power became an unexpected narrative. The conversation revolves around one of my favorite little-known bands and connections are made to Queen, Live, Muse, U2 and Radiohead.
We start with a brand-new song from the lead singer of a long running Adult Alternative leaning band and segueing to a huge '90s song from a one-hit wonder. That band becomes the catalyst for the narrative, and it goes to wonderful places.
The central figure band deserves to be heard by the masses. Hailing from Nashville, a music city where anything goes, they describe themselves, Epic Melodic Rock. I hope you'll listen, give feedback, and delve deeper into their music.
The next episode after these 2 will be an interview with the band, which will lead to a new podcast project in the Beyond Radio presents universe.
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Beyond Radio Presents - Castlist 009 - Ep 4 - Retro Song Trilogy
This is a long episode but has 3 sections so easy to take a break between sections. The first section is a followup to our Hopeful Boy Pop episode where we re-visit previous artists and songs discussed while bringing in some new stuff as well. Through it we stumble upon a new trend, the sped up or slowed down versions of songs.
Section 2 highlights a number of songs from 1972 that have had greater impact on me now, 50 years later. This is part of a yearly project that I prompted myself to do a bit after the podcast started in 2018. This leads into a look at, IMO, some of the worst songs of the '70s and a couple of bands from the era that I want to dive deeper into.
Section 3 jumps to 1992, which saw a mix up in my top 6 songs of the year, with the new #1 of 1992 now possibly in my top 10 of all-time.
The Beyond Radio 250 comes back this week but in an entirely different form. It is currently my weekly personal chart. It may morph into somewhat of a mix with some other factors. I had stopped compiling the chart back in December 2021 as it was just too time consuming to process even monthly. My focus for a long time now has been the podcast, which is the true joy of my music life. It is a unique bridge between music nostalgia and music discovery and a great vehicle for learning background information and connections of artists from the past, while connecting them to current music. It has also led to the discovery of more music from the past for me. All the songs that Jeff and I discuss can be found on the Spotify playlists that correspond to each season of the podcast (lovingly called the Pod-Castlist). Here are the playlists for the current season and my personal chart, which I update every 2 months.
If you Follow me on Spotify you will also find playlists associated with my annual music party, the 40th annual will be held this June. I am making playlists for each chart position in the top 50 of the year. A chronological playlist starting with the songs of 1983. I have completed the playlists for positions 31-50 and playlists for positions 21-30 will appear during March. In Spotify type beyondradio (as one word) in the search box, click on profiles and you'll see my face and name (Tim Harris). Or go directly to it here: https://open.spotify.com/user/beyondradio?si=ce9ccfc845914f32Or
Beyond Radio Presents: Number One Contenders
You can follow all the podcasts on Spotify and you can also access them through the podcast tab above. In this episode, I compare 2 versions of the same song, one that did not excite me and the other spent 8 weeks atop my personal chart. With that 2 month stay at the top in mind, I talk about potential #1 contenders, songs that missed the mark because of it, and some of its predecessors this year.
This has happened in the past with the song "Meet On The Ledge" by Fairport Convention. I was no fan of that song, easily on a hated list but when Counting Crows covered it, the song spent 4 weeks at #1 on my personal chart.
The Music Party 49's, Year-End looking backwards
The original #49 was ironically the song that topped the 1982 list that was compiled for this past summer’s party.”1999” by Prince was released in September 82 and peaked at #44 on the Hot 100 but saw the bulk of its success in 1983 after “Little Red Corvette” became a top 5 hit in the spring.
Over the course of the parties the 49’s saw food (Edamame, candy and cherries), along with “Something In Your Mouth” and “Something Just Like This”. There were also songs about sunshine, lightning and the night.
In back-to-back years (2015-16) there was “Same Damn Life” and Déjà Vu”. In 20011 & 2012 “S&M” led to a “Good Feeling” (oh there are Pornographers in the mix too, well new ones). 2 remakes of 70’s tunes also made the grade in 2001 and 2003.
In 2017 Chris Cornell pondered “Our Time In The Universe” from the 2015 album “Higher Truth”, the same year he left our planet. In 2006 the title tune from the movie version of “Rent” showed up on the list. Its creator Jonathan Larson lost his life the day of the first Off-Broadway preview of the musical in 1996. The 2021 film “Tick Tick…Boom” was based on events in Larson’s life as a struggling composer and playwright. Andrew Garfield won a Golden Globe for his portrayal of Larson.
By far my favorite song at #49 through the years is the Jellyfish tune “Joining A Fan Club” from the 1993 album “Spilt Milk”. This song was a favorite among our circle of friends at the time and is an important part of our personal soundtrack and probably in my top 100 songs of all time. It is an epic, satirical look at Fanclub-dom, from the traditional
(“Joining a fan club with my friendsFilling our bathtubs with T-shirts and 8 x 10's.”)
to the holy
(“Mom's writing checks to the minister in the corner singing "dig down deep"Cause if you wanna go to heaven all you gotta do is pay to pray.”)
This is Power-Pop at its finest. The instrumental bridge from 2:08 to 3:08 is blistering yet melodic with many layers. The short-lived band (only 2 early ‘90s albums) certainly maintains a cult following and a few of the members are now the Lickerish Quartet. In the past 2 years they have released 3 EP’s (Threesome Vol.1, 2, and 3) and have reached my top 10 4 times with 2 #1’s.
Before the beyondradio.com website debuted in 1995 I had a newsletter called Musicscape. In it I compiled a chart based on friends doing their own weekly personal chart along with information on new releases. It was a small group of people and it started before I discovered hundreds of people on the internet who posted their own personal charts. During the life of the newsletter (mid-1993 to early spring 1994) “Joining A Fan Club” reached #11 and spent over half a year on the chart. I still have some of the newsletters I produced and looking back it seems so quaint. This was still a time when personal computers were a relatively new thing, and I was still putting the countdown for the party on cassette tapes. I still have most of those as well. Oh, the olden days.
Speaking of the olden days, this time of year has me reflecting on past decades and assessing how I feel about the music in current day. This year I look back at 1972, 82, etc. The new1972 list saw some major differences from the past. I did not do a personal chart in 1972. It was 1974 when I commenced my weekly list. Going back a little over 20 years ago I compiled my first top 25 of 72 but clearly, I did not give it a lot of thought.
The current top 25 is completely reflective of how I feel about these songs now. “Conquistador” has always been a potent entry for me but “American Pie” took a big dip, going from #1 to #21. The biggest drop was “Layla” which fell from #16 to #122. “Conquistador” transports me right back to my 11-year-old self and was an early indicator of my love for a rock/orchestra mix. The Electric Light Orchestra was a favorite band of the late ‘70s and show up for the first time here at #11 with “10538 Overture”.
The big winners in my top 250 of 1972 were the Partridge Family (23 entries-4 in the top 25) and Elton John (12 entries-2 in the top 25). It was an absolute pleasure to re-discover “Never Been To Spain” by Three Dog Night. I feel like I’ve listened to this song like it’s a new one this year, though I have vivid memories of this from childhood. A great build on this song, it’s my favorite by the band now. They were a solid band for me in the early ‘70s.
Unfortunately, The Honey Cone’s “One Monkey Don’t Stop No Show” is not available on Spotify. The Motown-esque girl group is best known for their #1 song “Want Ads” from 1971. This single reached #15 on the Hot 100. It was a bright spot in R&B at time as so much of that genre had a heaviness over it. Even many of the love songs had a gloom over them (i.e. Al Green, “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face”-one of the creepiest songs I know).
The Carpenters manage 3 songs in the top 25, one of those being the album cut “Road Ode” (#25), a great song showing the dynamic between quiet verses and lush and expansive chorus. A song I had completely forgotten about shows up at #13. Chi Coltrane’s “Thunder And Lightning”, a rollicking blues-pop jam. The song hit #17 on the Hot 100 and according to Wikipedia it was a #1 record in New York City. That makes sense since I grew up in North Jersey. I can see how this song would lead to my appreciation of Bonnie Raitt. Sadly Coltrane ended up as a one-hit-wonder.
2 1 PROCOL HARUM Conquistador
x 2 THREE DOG NIGHT Never Been To Spain
8 3 THE HONEY CONE One Monkey Don't Stop No Show
x 4 PARTRIDGE FAMILY If You Ever Go
x 5 THE OSMONDS Down By The Lazy River
x 6 PARTRIDGE FAMILY Maybe Someday
x 7 BOZ SCAGGS Dinah Flo
12 8 RASPBERRIES Go All The Way
13 9 THE CARPENTERS Goodbye To Love
10 10 CLIMAX Precious And Few
x 11 ELECTRIC LIGHT ORCHESTRA 10538 Overture
6 12 BEE GEES Run To Me
x 13 CHI COLTRANE Thunder And Lightning
x 14 PARTRIDGE FAMILY Last Night
11 15 THE CARPENTERS Hurting Each Other
14 16 ELTON JOHN Tiny Dancer
x 17 PARTRIDGE FAMILY Love Must Be The Answer
22 18 THREE DOG NIGHT Black & White
5 19 AMERICA I Need You
24 20 ELTON JOHN Rocket Man (I Think It's Gonna Be A Long, Long Time)
1 21 DON MCLEAN American Pie
x 22 JOHN LENNON Happy Xmas (The War Is Over)
x 23 DANIEL BOONE Beautiful Sunday
20 24 NILSSON Without You
x 25 THE CARPENTERS Road Ode
Countdown to the Annual Music Party
This coming June with be my 40th annual music party. We go in-depth about the music party on the 5 episodes from Castlist 002 of the Beyond Radio Presents podcast. For those not in the know, the first party was in January 1984 and counted down the top 125 of the year based on a group of my friends' top 50's of 1983 (David Bowie's "Modern Love" was the first #1). By the mid-90's the party had morphed into a summer party and soon became a weekend event and really an annual reunion of friends and family. I did not know when I had the initial idea that it would go on for this long but I am blessed that it has.
My life has been one immersed in music, starting with The Partridge Family (the bulk of episodes from Castlist 001 relate PFam songs to some of the genres that I have gravitated towards), leading into my weekly personal chart, the music party, and then this website. During the first 20 years of the website it was mainly focused on the charts I compiled from personal charts from across the globe. All of these things fueled my insatiable search for new music.
Once I started the podcast in 2018 that has become my main focus and it has been a true joy to produce. The premise of the podcast, where music nostalgia and music discovery collide, made me look backward as well as forwards. What a gift it is to sift through my history with music and create a way for people to discover music through my lens (and of course my podcast partner Jeff Morris' as well). It was his suggestion that I do a podcast so the gift really came from him.
The 40th annual music party is scheduled for June 24, 2023. In leading up to that I decided to make a series of playlists that feature the songs that attained each position in the top 50 each year. The first playlist is all the #50's from the last 39 years. The playlists won't always have 39 songs as some songs ended up performing better the following year they hit a certain position.
The songs are in chronological order and are a mix of well-known and obscure songs. Typically the participation of submissions would be anywhere from 20 to 50 people so in the years where there were fewer it was easier for songs that were not big hits to reach the top 50. This past summer there was substantially less participation which allowed "Coconuts" by Kim Petras reach #4 and the remake of Reba McEntire's "Does He Love Me" with Dolly Parton come in at #6. I personally love the eclectic mix that the party countdown provides.
The first #50 was the Creedence Clearwater Revival's "Have You Seen The Rain" as done by Bonnie Tyler (maybe a travesty to some but it turned the song into a grandiose upbeat anthem). The signature production by Jim Steinman is evident. Ironically Steinman's muse Meat Loaf showed up at #50 11 years later with "I'd Do Anything For Love (But I Won't Do That)". In 2020 the song "Die To Live" by the Danish metal band Volbeat was #50 and with it's mix of metal and boogie-woogie horns it is very reminiscent of Meat Loaf's addition to the Rocky Horror movie "Hot Patootie-Bless My Soul". We discussed this in an episode of the podcast but with 65 episodes I'm not sure which one (we've easily discussed over 1000 songs thus far).
To show the diversity of the countdown, #50 in the last 4 years has been by Barbra Streisand, Volbeat, Blake Shelton, and Jack White. Shelton shows up another time with a largely overlooked duet that went to #4 in Iceland in 2013. There's also a punk band with a transgender lead singer, a poignant song about a father and son by a British singer-songwriter, a Canadian 2-hit wonder from 1993, and a lip-syncing duo.
The typical (pop, rock, country, etc.) and atypical (heartland, rhythmic adult) as charted by our personal chart panel. See the full top 100's and the top 100 of each genre's primary voter panel side by side. The voter panel charts show you what songs in other genres the panel appreciates as well.
The Top 10's
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