Guess the Top 20 in the Triple J Hottest 100

10 July 2009

Written by: Lawrie Zion

UPDATE – JANUARY 25 2010 – We realise that a lot of people reading this will have found this archival relic through search engines, but we’ve left it as it is was when it was first published during the countdown for the Hottest 100 of all time in July 2009.


Have you figured out what’s going to be number one? It’s certainly been more than interesting being drip fed the “bottom 80″ of Triple J’s Hottest 100 of all time this week. There’s some wonderful inclusions, and – as anyone would hope – a wildly unpredictable mix of  music championed by the Js and public radio, along with a range of more overtly “mainstream” tracks.

If it all means anything, it’s that Triple J has a refreshingly broad audience. And just as we discovered 20 years ago, this is not the kind of  list that could have been generated by a commercial FM audience.

But how does this help us figure out what’s going to make it into the Top 20? With any luck, there’s still going to be room for some surprises. Still, the punter in me can’t quite help myself. As well as treating past charts and what we know about this year’s list as my form guides, I’ve been following the posts on the Top 20 prediction thread of Triple J’s site, which include some apparently informed speculation about the breakdown of the top 20 tracks by decade, and I’ve come up with this.

20 – Bohemian Rhapsody – Queen

19 – Weather With You – Crowded House

18 – Wish You Were Here – Pink Floyd

17 – Bittersweet Symphony – The Verve

16 – Lullaby – The Cure

15 – Power and the Passion – Midnight Oil

14 – Dancing Queen – Abba

13 – Wuthering Heights – Kate Bush

12 – Young Folks – Peter, Bjorn, and John

11- The Ship Song – Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds

10 – Stairway to Heaven – Led Zeppelin

9 – Sympathy for the Devil – Rolling Stones

8 – Paranoid Android – Radiohead

7 – Under Pressure – Queen and David Bowie

6 – Primary – The Cure

5 – Under the Bridge – Red Hot Chili Peppers

4 – Wonderwall – Oasis

3 – Last Goodbye – Jeff Buckley

2 – Love Will Tear Us Apart – Joy Division

1 – Smells Live Teen Spirit – Nirvana

I could be outrageously wrong of course. So if you want to engage in some wild predictions or even resort to a flurry of wishful thinking, send your submissions to us here at Upstart before midday Sunday. Lawrie Zion