More from the 2010 Blog, The End of the Rock’s Summer in Popland, Part 1


Learn more about an era of music and the connections behind the songs. Interwoven with personal anecdotes, commentary and artist history. A unique way to tap into music nostalgia and discovery.


My Personal Chart, November 7, 2010

See my chart here


I have a running joke that I like bands that sound like Nickelback more than I like Nickelback. Often, I am irritated by Nickelback. The song that irks me the most is “Photograph” from 2005 (“and what the hell is on Joey’s head”). Even with that, the song reached #30 on my personal chart. I think it took a little time before I was completely annoyed. Theory Of A Deadman is one of those bands and not ironically the first band to be signed to Chad Kroeger’s label 604 Records. They have relatively similar histories on my chart. Nickelback 31 charted songs, 2 top 10’s, TOAD 29 songs, 3 top 10s, but TOAD has had more than double the songs reach my top 30.

This was the ninth single from the band’s 2008 album “Scars & Souvenirs”, their most succes

This was the ninth single from the band’s 2008 album “Scars & Souvenirs”, their most successful album. It spawned 3 top 3 Rock songs (“So Happy”, “Hate My Life” and the #1 “Bad Girlfriend”) and 2 Hot AC and Pop hits with the Rock ballads “All Or Nothing” and “Not Meant To Be”. They have always had a tongue-in-cheek side, most recently with the humorous “Straight Jacket” in 2017, a song that was discussed on an early episode of the Beyond Radio Presents podcast. Another song about a bad girlfriend, the best lyric is:

“And you’re supercali-pessimistic-expiali-narcissistic You are Mary Poppins, you’ll be soon be going out of business Guys, let me witness, you got a Honda Civic ‘Cause you’re backseat driving my life”

It’s full of clever phrases and haunting backing vocals with a number of critics panning it. During the song’s run on my chart, I went back and forth on it, but in the end, I enjoyed it. It just missed the Rock top 10. Their most recent Rock #1’s are more sobering efforts; “Rx (Medicate)” (also from 2017) a song about prescription drug abuse, and last year’s “History Of Violence” about domestic violence.

By the end of the aughts, Rock artists were increasingly fading from Pop radio, with it almost being a dirty word by 2020. Between 2009 and 2012 you can see the erosion according to the Billboard Hot 100. In 2009 4 Rock songs made the top 20:

#6 New Divide/Linkin Park

#7 Second Chance/Shinedown

#15 No Surprise/Daughtry

#19 If Today Was Your Last Day/Nickelback

In 2010 only 6 songs landed in the top 50:

#17 According To You/Orianthi

#27 The Catalyst/Linkin Park

#34 This Afternoon/Nickelback

#36 September & Life After You/Daughtry

#37 Radioactive/ Kings Of Leon

2011 saw 5 in the top 50 but none in the top 30

#35 (It) Feels So Good/Steven Tyler

#38 The Adventures Of Rain Dance Maggie/Red Hot Chili Peppers

#41 Crawling Back To You/Daughtry

#42 Waiting For The End/Linkin Park

#44 When We Stand Together/Nickelback

In 2012 only 6 titles made the entire top 100

#30 Burn It Down/Linkin Park

#67 Tattoo/Van Halen (their first single to hit the Hot 100 in 17 years and only for one week)

#94 Bully/Shinedown

#94 Gold On The Ceiling/Black Keys

#95 Lost In The Echo/Linkin Park

#97 Oh Love/Green Day

See the pattern? Mostly the same artists or big names. Nickelback was prominent here and had a healthy Pop presence throughout the 2000-10 decade. According to Joel Whitburn’s latest edition of his Top Singles Book, they were the #25 artist of the 2000s. California’s Linkin Park was arguably the biggest Rock act of the aughts. “Waiting For The End” (105) was on its way to a #11 peak on my chart, the last time they would make my top 25. The atypical ballad has a great build to it and gives lead singer Chester Bennington a great showcase. He claimed that this and the song “Iridescent” (a true ballad) were his favorites from the album “A Thousand Suns”. The album deals with subjects like nuclear warfare. The songs “The Catalyst” and ‘Waiting’ both hit #1 on the Alternative chart with “Iridescent” peaking at #19. The band would hit the summit one more time in 2012 with “Burn It Down” and in 2017 they made the Pop top 20 with “Heavy” featuring the female artist Kiiara, which was a true departure from their previous work.

Bennington, who committed suicide in July 2017, was briefly the lead vocalist of Stone Temple Pilots between 2013-15. This was after the original vocalist Scott Weiland was fired in 2013. The band was supposed to do a tour for the 20th anniversary of their album “Core”, their debut during the Grunge era featuring the monster “Plush”, but it never materialized supposedly because Weiland couldn’t pull off the vocal abilities of his younger self. He also died, from an overdose and alcohol and cocaine, in 2015.

In 2010 their song “Cinnamon” (44) would reach #5 on my chart by the end of December. The song has a decidedly ‘60s Brit-Pop feel, not the first time they went that direction. In 1996 “Lady Picture Show” followed a somewhat similar stylistic path, a bit more psychedelic and definitely Beatlesque. That same year was the last time before “Cinnamon”, that the band was in my top 10, with the song “Trippin’ On A Hole In A Paper Heart”. That song has one of my favorite instrumental guitar breaks ever.

In 2003 STP had split up with Weiland going on to form Velvet Revolver with Slash and 2 other members of Gun N’ Roses and the Deleo Brothers from the Pilots hooked up with Filter’s lead singer Richard Patrick as Army Of Anyone. That group produced one album and one top 5 Rock song with the #3 “Goodbye”, a song that did moderately well for me. Filter had peaked at #5 on my chart in August 2010 with “Fades Like A Flower”, their fourth top 20 on my chart. It was featured on the soundtrack of the disaster movie “2012” starring John Cusack but saw no real radio exposure.

Velvet Revolver was a much more impactful band on my chart, placing 4 songs in my top 100 of the year between 2004-07, all reaching the top 10 on my weekly chart: “Fall To Pieces” #10, “The Last Fight” #7, “Slither” #6 and the non-radio song “You Got No Right” #1. That song has such a GNR/Slash guitar break which I’m sure sent the song over the top for me, though the song is absolutely a complete package. It also has a Beatlesque part before the guitar solo. The debut album from the supergroup, “Contraband”, debuted at #1 and sold almost 3 million copies. It won the band the Grammy for Best Hard Rock Performance in 2005, which Weiland had also won in 1994 with STP on the song “Plush”.

After Velvet Revolver, Slash released his debut solo album in 2010, the first of 4 in the last decade. That album featured a myriad of guest vocalists. The opening track “Ghost” (17)was sung by Ian Astbury of the ‘80s UK band The Cult. It went to #3 on my chart. Other singers included Fergie, Adam Levine, Chris Cornell, and Ozzy Osbourne. One of the singers, Myles Kennedy, became the voice on the tour because Slash was so impressed and said he was “one of the best Rock & Roll vocalists out there”. I totally agree. He became the primary vocalist on the next 3 albums and those produced 2 #1 songs on my personal chart (2012’s “Standing In The Sun” and 2018’s “Driving Rain”-I just see the correlation!) and 2 on Rock radio (“You’re A Lie” and “World On Fire”) plus 5 other top 10s.

Kennedy was actually offered to audition for Velvet Revolver but turned it down. He came on my radar in 1998 as the lead vocalist for the band Mayfield Four with their debut album. 5 songs from that charted for me, including 2 #1’s, “Shuddershell” for 2 weeks and “Always” for 5 weeks. I don’t recall their second album in 2001 but it produced their only Rock radio song, the #37 “Eden (Turn The Page)”. After Mayfield Four broke up Kennedy teamed up with 3 former members of Creed and became Alter Bridge. This has been a more fruitful endeavor with 15 songs charting on Rock radio since 2004. In 2008 the ballad “Watch Over You” reached #7 on my chart (#19 Rock and #40 HotAC as well) and has gone on to become one of my all-time favorite songs. It is a strummy ballad that is the most amazing showcase for his voice. Gorgeous and stately, his vocal explodes about halfway through (“who is gonna save you when I’m gone”). It’s a heartbreaking but beautiful song. Could be about death but more likely about being pushed out of a relationship due to substance abuse. It became the unofficial theme of “Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew” after being featured in a number of episodes (some scenes with former Guns N’ Roses drummer Steven Adler).


Mark Tremonti, of Alter Bridge and Creed, started his own band in 2011, Tremonti. He has his own impressive Rock pipes. In 2016 the band’s song “Dust” peaked at #8 on my chart, another song about death, perhaps suicide, with a fantastic guitar solo and soaring vocal:

“You carried the weight of everyone After all the time we spent Rewriting the rules that now we bend The whole damn thing has turned to dust You left alone, defeated us.”

Like “Watch Over You”, this song over time has been elevated for me. Between 2012-16 Wolfgang Van Halen was in the band and he played bass on this song. He is currently in the Rock top 20 as Mammoth WVH with “Distance”, his tribute to his father Eddie Van Halen.

Slash is featured on one of the heavier songs, “What I Want”, on Daughtry’s debut album. After Chris Daughtry’s success on the fifth season of American Idol, the album exploded becoming the fastest-selling album in the Soundscan era and the best-selling album of 2007, according to Billboard. The band had 3 songs on my chart this week, “What I Meant To Say” (26), “September” (43), and “Photograph” (78) with Santana (a cover of the Def Leppard song). And no, that did not do nearly as well as the original on my chart.

Chris Daughtry was quite busy during the last third of the aughts, collaborating with a number of artists featured here. Chad Kroeger co-wrote the band’s hit “No Surprise”, Daughtry co-wrote the 2009 Theory Of A Deadman single “By The Way”. He was a guest vocalist on the song “The Past” by Sevendust in 2008 and that album also has appearances from Myles Kennedy and Mark Tremonti. Sevendust had their highest charting Rock song in 2010 with the #7 “Unraveling” but have been consistent performers on Rock radio since 1997. Both Daughtry and Sevendust are in the current Rock top 40, Daughtry’s return to Rock form “World On Fire” is #20 and Sevendust’s “Dying to Live” is #34.

Daughtry also worked with 2 artists that impacted the Christian music market at the time. Ed Kowalcyzk had a bad falling out with his band Live in 2009 and released the solo album “Alive” in 2010. There was always an underlying spirituality with Live but he went deeper into it on this album (which hit #6 on the Christian Albums Chart) with songs like “Grace” (#2 on my chart in August) and “Drink (Everlasting Love)” (29). The latter was co-written by Daughtry. In 2003 Kowalcyzk performed the John Lennon song “Imagine” with Slash at a 2003 concert called “Peace On The Beach” in protest of the Iraq war. He also performed the song on tour with Live in 1999 feeling it was an appropriate song leading up to the millennium. Videos from the tour are much better than the beach concert footage. I had seen Live a number of times and on this tour, they followed “Imagine” with my favorite song of all-time (at that point), “Pillar Of Davidson”. It was the greatest concert experience of my life. We discuss it on the Beyond Radio Presents podcast, Castlist 005, Episode 2.

Finally here, Daughtry teamed up with the Christian Rock band Third Day in 2009 on the song “Slow Down”. That along with “This Is Who I Am” and the #1 “Run To You” all made my top 25 songs of the year. Their album “Revelation” was big for me, with 6 charting songs and the title track possibly my favorite song by the band (my #14 of 2008). I wrote about them last month as well and 2 songs from 2000, “Sky Falls Down” and “What Good” re-entered my chart. Both originally peaked at #101. This week ‘Sky’ sits at #2 and “What Good” at #14. It’s so great to re-discover past songs. Right now, another song from “Revelation” is playing, ‘Otherside”. This one I don’t remember and didn’t chart then but could very well now.

Part 2 will explore another side of Rock music in 2010.

Read more of the Blog here

By: Radio Tim 
Dec 4, 2020