Playlist Metrics

So I sat down and created a list of every single artist included on one of the 52 playlists so far. Here are some of the more interesting numbers.

Three songs were repeated: Sam Cooke’s “A Change Is Gonna Come” (just repeated this very week, in fact), Bill Withers’ “Ain’t No Sunshine,” and Linda Ronstadt’s “When Will I Be Loved?” Why those three? No idea.

Coming as no surprise, Bob Dylan and Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers tied for most songs on playlists at 15 each. If you include the solo Tom Petty song with the Heartbreakers pile, that would bring him to 16, but that seems disingenuous.

Behind Dylan and the Heartbreakers, the numbers drop off quite steeply. Tom Waits, The Rolling Stones, The National, and the Beatles all had six songs each. The Wallflowers came in at 5, as did Van Morrison.

Overall, there were approximately 346 different musical acts featured on the 52 playlists. Considering that three of those playlists were exclusive to a single band/musician, that’s pretty fantastic.

I’ve purposely left myself out of these calculations, even though I did the whole 8-song EP a couple of months ago, but that would’ve put me just ahead of the groups that did 6.

What have I learned from going through the data? There’s a fairly wide variety of musicians and bands on display. Do I have the most eclectic taste ever? No. Most of the stuff I listen to can be broadly categorized as classic rock, alternative, or Americana. You’ve got the occasional Lizzo or some soul and 50s/60s R&B thrown in for fun, but nothing I’ve put on a playlist particularly surprises me.

My favorite playlist was probably either Playlist #5, created for my friend Lauren’s birthday, or Playlist #14, created for my dad’s birthday. Both of these playlists had me playing around with themes and I really enjoyed how they hung together as a list of great songs. I also really enjoyed the recent Romeo and Juliet Playlist, #46. I like themes. They’re fun and sometimes challenging to build around.

Any regrets? I wish I’d put more time and thought into the playlist for my mother’s birthday, #10. I mean, not even one Supertramp song on there? What was I thinking?

I’m going to keep doing the playlists and writing about them each week. It brings me joy and makes me write, two things that I think are important. I hope you enjoy them, too.