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This Week In Billboard Chart History: Don Henley’s ‘End Of The Innocence’ Begins

This week 25 years ago, the Eagle's landmark solo set debuted. Plus, remembering key chart feats for Garth Brooks, Soundgarden and Miley Cyrus.

Your weekly recap celebrating significant milestones from more than seven decades of Billboard chart history

July 14, 1990
“Holding you I, held everything. For a moment, wasn’t I the king?” Garth Brooks sings in “The Dance,” a true modern country classic. The touching ballad began a four-week command on Hot Country Songs 24 years ago today. Last week, Brooks announced his return, with a new studio album, his first since 2001, and tour on the way. (Count down Brooks’ top 25 Hot Country Songs hits here.)


July 15, 1989
Don Henley‘s third solo album, “The End of the Innocence,” debuts on the Billboard 200 at No. 97. Two months later, it peaks at No. 8; it’s eventually certified six-times Platinum by the RIAA. In 2000, when Henley released follow-up “Inside Job,” he reflected on the classic “Innocence” in a Billboard cover story. “I still love the song ‘New York Minute,’ and ‘The Last Worthless Evening’ is just straight-ahead pop, but it’s good. And, of course, [the title cut, a No. 8 Billboard Hot 100 hit co-written with and -produced by Bruce Hornsby] is very fixed in time. I think it has enough universality that it could still apply today, but it was about the Reagan era.” Henley also relayed the reach of the No. 21-peaking “The Heart of the Matter”: “I have a collection of the most amazing letters about that song from all over the world that I treasure. I’m gonna keep them forever.”

July 16, 1994
Twenty years ago today, Soundgarden snared its first Mainstream Rock Songs No. 1, as “Black Hole Sun” began a seven-week total eclipse of the chart. Renowned parent album “Superunknown” became the band’s sole No. 1 on the Billboard 200, topping the March 26, 1994, tally.

July 17, 1961
On this date 53 years ago, Billboard’s Adult Contemporary chart originates. Brook Benton‘s lighthearted “The Boll Weevil Song” is the survey’s first No. 1. (Current leader “All of Me” by John Legend is the 780th AC leader.)

July 18, 2009
Miley Cyrus‘ “The Climb” completed its climb to No. 1 on Billboard’s Adult Contemporary chart. The song, from the box office hit “Hannah Montana: The Movie,” marked her first AC chart entry after she’d made her mark with younger fans familiar with her Disney acting.

July 19, 1980
Billy Joel‘s 13th Billboard Hot 100 hit was a lucky one: “It’s Still Rock and Roll to Me” became his first No. 1 on this date 34 years ago. He’d reign again with “Tell Her About It” in 1983 and his musical history lesson “We Didn’t Start the Fire” in 1989.

July 20, 1991
EMF reaches No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 with “Unbelievable.” What does the U.K. group’s moniker stand for? Epsom Mad Funkers, the name of a fan club of fellow British band New Order.