Glee: The Billboard Cover Story

McKinley High School's most musical students began their sophomore year Tuesday (Sept. 21), as Fox's "Glee" began its second season (and drew grade-A ratings).

The "Glee" troupe performed versions of Jay-Z and Alicia Keys' "Empire State of Mind," Lady Gaga and Beyonce's "Telephone," Travie McCoy's "Billionaire," "Listen," from "Dreamgirls," and "What I Did for Love," from "A Chorus Line."

"Season two begins with more budget cuts looming and the 'Glee' kids reeling from their loss at Regionals," Columbia Records, which releases and promotes the show's music, touted prior to the airing. "In episode one, 'Audition,' the club is in an 'Empire state of mind,' as there are new members to recruit in order to make it to New York for Nationals.

"This episode introduces Sunshine Corazon (Charice) and Sam (Chord Overstreet) but Rachel and Finn don't see eye to eye on them.

"Meanwhile, McKinley High has a new football coach, Shannon Beiste (Dot Marie Jones), who immediately shows herself to be a threat to both the 'Glee' club and the Cheerios," the label teased.

Upon the return of "Glee" - and a week before the "Glee" cast will likely extend its sum of Hot 100 entries past 64, the seventh-best total in the chart's history - Chart Beat looks back at 30 TV theme songs that have impacted Billboard charts in the past 30 years. (Even if "Glee" itself, a TV series that has revolutionized the way the medium has spotlighted music, features only an approximately two-second a capella vocal stab for its theme ...)

"Theme From the Dukes of Hazzard (Good Ol' Boys)," Waylon Jennings

No. 1 (one week) Country Songs, No. 21 Billboard Hot 100, 1980

"Theme From Greatest American Hero (Believe It or Not)," Joey Scarbury
No. 2 Hot 100, 1981

"Theme From Hill St. Blues," Mike Post
No. 10 Hot 100, 1981

"Theme From Magnum P.I.," Mike Post
No. 25 Hot 100, 1982

"Where Everybody Knows Your Name," Gary Portnoy
(theme from "Cheers")
No. 28 Adult Contemporary, No. 83 Hot 100, 1983

"Theme From St. Elsewhere," Dave Grusin
No. 15 Adult Contemporary, 1984

"Miami Vice Theme," Jan Hammer
No. 1 (one week) Hot 100, 1985

"Peter Gunn," the Art of Noise featuring Duane Eddy
No. 2 Dance/Club Play Songs, No. 50 Hot 100, 1986 (Eddy had reached No. 27 on the Hot 100 with the theme in 1960, a year after Ray Anthony took his version to No. 8.)

"Moonlighting (Theme)," Al Jarreau
No. 1 (one week) Adult Contemporary, No. 23 Hot 100, 1987