The project to determine my peak music year continues this week with a look at the 1968 BillBoard Hot 100.  If you want to recap 1965, 66 and 67 you can click here.

For the first time so far in this endeavor, the winner of the round not only had the most songs at the #1 position, but also the most overall time spent at #1 as well.  1968 was an interesting year, as there were five individual songs that each spent four consecutive weeks or more at #1, not including one of the songs by this year’s winner that spent nine consecutive weeks at #1.  Dying of suspense?  OK, I’ll have mercy and announce the winner as…The Beatles!  Somewhat anti-climactic, isn’t it?  The Beatles had two songs that made #1 in 1968;  Hello Goodbye which spent 2 weeks at #1 (after having spent time at #1 the previous year also) and Hey Jude which spent an amazing nine consecutive weeks at #1.  So here you go.

Hello Goodbye, two weeks at #1

And Hey Jude, nine weeks at #1

Another interesting thing about Hey Jude is that it bucked the AM Radio format of the two and a half minute song, as it clocked in at a little over seven minutes, almost four minutes of which is “Na Na Na Na-na-na-na”.  As I mentioned in one of the earlier posts, it is possible The Beatles dominated the chart until their breakup in 1970 (I don’t know for sure – I have not cheated and looked ahead).  They’ve won every year now 1965 through 68.  I guess we’ll find out together.

I mentioned that there were five songs that each spent four consecutive weeks or more at #1.  One of them is instantly recognizable as one of the best songs of the sixties…period.  I’ll just tell you the name of the artist:  Otis Redding.  Now listen:

A note of irony in that the song did not reach #1 until after Otis Redding’s death that year in a plane crash, the first posthumous #1 song in BillBoard Hot 100 history.  Too bad.

Oh…also…Sittin’ On The Dock Of The Bay is two minutes and forty two seconds long.  So it also bucked the two-and-a-half minute format.  Just by a lot less.   See you next week when we wrap up the sixties with The 1969 BillBoard Hot 100.  See ya!