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Today, WXPN is wrapping up its annual countdown, The Greatest Year In Music. Over the last couple of months, WXPN asked our listeners to vote for their top 5 years in music. The winning year – well, the year that got the most votes – was 1969.

As a part of this week long celebration of music history, we wondered what songs have stood the test of time, based on Spotify song play counts for songs from 1969 over time. With the help of Matt Daniels over at Polygraph, he designed a chart that tracks Billboard hits from 1950-2005 and their play counts on Spotify.

Keep in mind that many notable artists, including The Beatles and Taylor Swift, are not on Spotify. That said, the data is revealing and fun to see.

For many excellent musical reasons, 1969 was voted the Greatest Year In Music. in 2014, from all the songs on Spotify from 1969, the Jackson 5’s “I Want You Back” has the most Spotify plays, yet it was only #19 on the Billboard charts from 1969. On the other hand, “Aquarius/Let The Sunshine In” by The Fifth Dimension, which was #1 on the Billboard charts in 1969 was the 17th most played song on Spotify in 2014.

Go here to explore more yourself. You can track individual years, decades, songs, and artists. Fair warning: you will go down a big data rabbit hole!

Check out all of our Spotify playlists for each of the 20 years in the Greatest Year countdown here.

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