The Top 2000 over the years

Part 2: Various perspectives on the popular list

Raymond Meester
4 min readJan 5, 2023

Based on the Top2000 Database we already used in part one, I try to give some other perspectives. Instead of a top 40 of hits of the moment, I create various top 40 lists on all editions of the top2000.

By Score

Highest score over the years

In this category the number one of the list of a specific year gets 2000 points, the number 2 1999, and so on. Here is the top 40 over all editions:

Highest score over the years II

As newer songs are a bit disadvantaged, because they enter the list later, we give in this category more weight to the last years. Thus, the 2022 numbers counts 24 times, 2021 23 times, and so on.

Highest score over the years III (21st century)

As the scores still have a pre-eminence over the 21st century, I will focus in the last score solely on the 21st century, creating a year neutral list.

Positions: Highest, lowest and average

In this category we look at the top 40s of the highest, lowest and average positions over all the editions.

Highest position

There are 5 songs that reached the number one position. Only one (Child in time) reached number 2.

Lowest position

This is a ranking by the lowest position in the list. Bohemian Rhapsody never got below the second place. Here is the complete top 40:

Average position

Ranking by the average position of song over the years.

Differences & Frequencies


In this list, we show the biggest differences between the highest and lowest ranking of a song over the years.


This list in how many editions a song had an entry. The complete top 40 was in all editions (In total, 572 songs are in all editions).

Number of songs by artist

The Beatles have by far most entries of songs over the years. Followed by Rollings Stones and Queen. Coldplay is a relative modern band with lots of entries.

Excel (.xslx) or LibreOffice (.ods) with all data can be downloaded from my GitHub page: