Taking Peaks, Part 4: Nos. 25-1
Taking Peaks, Part 4: Nos. 25-1

No. 5
"Brick House," Commodores (1977)

The R&B icons charted six songs higher than this disco classic, although "Brick House" remains their top-peaking uptempo track. The Commodores reached No. 1 twice, with "Three Times a Lady" (1978) and "Still" (1979). "Easy," "Sail On" and "Oh No" each rose to No. 4. After Lionel Richie departed for an enormously successful solo career, the band continued to impact the chart's upper ranks, sending "Nightshift" to No. 3 in 1985.

Honorable Mentions:
"It's the Same Old Song," Four Tops (1965)
"More Than a Feeling," Boston (1976)
"Cum On Feel the Noize," Quiet Riot (1983)
"Summer of '69," Bryan Adams (1985)
"Rock Your Body," Justin Timberlake (2003)

No. 4
"We Will Rock You/We Are the Champions," Queen (1978)

Queen charted on the Billboard 200 as recently as September, when "Live in Ukraine" debuted. The set, recorded with Paul Rodgers, raised funds to combat AIDS, from which the Ukraine population suffers at an alarming level. Reflecting on the outdoor concert that garnered an estimated audience of 350,000, Rodgers recalls, "In my eyes, the only true benefit to having 'celebrity' status is to use it to make a difference. Ukraine is a special place with special people."

Honorable Mentions:
"Stand By Me," Ben E. King (1961)
"Unchained Melody," the Righteous Brothers (1965)
"Sweet Caroline (Good Times Never Seemed So Good)," Neil Diamond (1969)
"Thriller," Michael Jackson (1984)
"Ironic," Alanis Morissette (1996)

No. 3
"Imagine," John Lennon Plastic Ono Band (1971)

Lennon's second revered anthem promoting peace on this list (see No. 14) reached one of the senses that few songs do: taste. In 2008, Ben & Jerry's created "Imagine Whirled Peace," an ice cream combining caramel and peace-sign shaped chocolate, with proceeds benefitting the Lennon Estate and non-profit organization Peace One Day. Said the company's co-founder Jerry Greenfield, "When Ben & Jerry's decided to engage in a campaign about peace, we couldn't think of a better person to exemplify the message than John Lennon."

Honorable Mentions:
"California Girls," the Beach Boys (1965)
"Build Me Up Buttercup," the Foundation (1969)
"Last Dance," Donna Summer (1978)
"Sexual Healing," Marvin Gaye (1983)
"Mambo No. 5 (A Little Bit Of...)," Lou Bega (1999)

No. 2
"Louie Louie," the Kingsmen (1963)

As with Nos. 41 and 11, a No. 2 peak can induce frustration for chart-watchers one position away from celebrating significantly greater chart glory. (Daryl Hall & John Oates, in fact, have seen titles stop at all three numbers). Still, a No. 2 peak hasn't prevented a pair of songs from earning the honor of top Hot 100 title of the year: "Breathe," Faith Hill (2000) and "Hanging By a Moment," Lifehouse (2001). The Kingsmen's classic party song spent six weeks peaking in the runner-up spot; no title would peak at No. 2 for so long a stretch until Gerry Rafferty tallied an equal stay in second place with "Baker Street" in 1978.

Honorable Mentions:
"Dream Lover," Bobby Darin (1959)
"Can't Help Falling in Love," Elvis Presley (1962)
"Like a Rolling Stone," Bob Dylan (1965)
"Yellow Submarine," the Beatles (1966)
"What's Going On," Marvin Gaye (1971)
"Also Sprach Zarathustra (2001)," Deodato (1973)
"Y.M.C.A.," Village People (1979)
"Girls Just Want to Have Fun," Cyndi Lauper (1983)
"Dancing in the Dark," Bruce Springsteen (1984)
"I Want Your Sex," George Michael (1987)
"Pour Some Sugar on Me," Def Leppard (1988)
"Wild Thing," Tone Loc (1989)
"Express Yourself," Madonna (1989)
"Bohemian Rhapsody," Queen (1992)
"Under the Bridge," Red Hot Chili Peppers (1992)
"Whoomp! (There It Is)," Tag Team (1993)
"All I Wanna Do," Sheryl Crow (1994)
"Without Me," Eminem (2002)
"Boulevard of Broken Dreams," Green Day (2005)
"Since U Been Gone," Kelly Clarkson (2005)
"You Belong With Me," Taylor Swift (2009)