I’m a firm believer that music (and all arts in general), should be covered like sports. Not in terms of the front of front page of the sports section (who won or who lost), but in the back where the stats are (who did what).
So I’m happy to introduce the Billboard Roll Call, which collects Kansas City (and KC regional) artists who have charted a single on the Billboard Top 40 during the rock era, defined as anything after January 1955.
It’s an eclectic list, including jazz artists such as Count Basie and Stan Kenton, mainstream country artists like Martina McBride and Sara Evans, rock acts like Puddle of Mudd and Melissa Etheridge, and rappers like Eminem.
A couple of provisos:
- Information is taken from The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits (ninth edition), by Joel Whitburn, which covers 1955-2009. Yep, I read the whole sucker and marked it up. Any errors and omissions are purely mine.
- I cast the net really wide and included any artist from Kansas and Missouri, within a three-hour drive of Kansas City. This means that they were born, grew up or went to college in the region.
- The Billboard charts measure popularity, not quality. Sometimes the two mix, sometimes they don’t.
Hope you enjoy. Look for more roll calls as the year progresses.