It has been my custom to mark significant milestones with a post about the blog, citing various statistics; things like the most popular posts, the countries from where Just Backdated attracts most hits and any odd anomalies that occur, like all those hits from Russia that arrived suddenly last year and disappeared equally suddenly, a bit sinister that. Us bloggers have access to pages that give us this kind of data, and through them I know precisely how many hits every single one of all my posts, now numbering 638, has received.
Here then is the top 10, with the date of the post in brackets, followed by the number of hits:
1) JOHN, PAUL & KEITH In Santa Monica (June 3, 2014) – 13,874
2) PALAZZO DARIO – The Palace That Tommy Bought (Feb 10, 2016) – 5,400
3) WHO UK TOUR 2014 (June 30, 2014) – 5,165
4) JIMMY PAGE – The Day Jimmy Met Robert (July 28, 2016) – 4,638
5) LAUNCHING DEAR BOY (Feb 13, 2015) – 4,149
6) THE WHO – My Hidden Gems Album (Aug 21, 2014) – 3,697
7) THE WHO – Hyde Park, London (June 27, 2015) – 3,589
8) PRETEND YOU’RE IN A WAR – Who Book Review (Sep 9, 2014) – 2,831
9) UNDERTURE – Keith’s Great Triumph (Oct 7, 2014) – 2,806
10) PETE TOWNSHEND INTERVIEW – June 1974 (May 25, 2014) – 2,747
I’m still slightly puzzled by how many (presumably) Who fans hit on the second-placed post about Kit Lambert’s palace in Venice, which I would have thought was of marginal interest compared to more primary Who posts like show reviews and interviews from their golden era or reports on the group’s history and personnel. My only explanation is that it was posted last year, after Just Backdated had become reasonably well established, of which more later.
Bubbling under, ie over 2,000 hits, are loads more Who-related posts but looking back over all 638 I noticed that Blogspot’s mathematics is not infallible, and that according to the overall listing (as opposed to most hits) my post about Rory Gallagher’s battered old Fender Stratocaster (Oct 14, 2014) has actually received 3,113 hits which would put it in eighth place in the table above. The only other non-Who post above 2,000 is the one about Deep Purple’s misadventures in Jakarta, an extract from my book about the group, which is on 2,527.
Hovering just below the 2,000 mark are my obituary of Slade’s tour manager Graham ‘Swin’ Swinnerton (1,914) and one or two others (Jim Lea, Adrian Boot, Wilko Johnson, Jimmy Page, Bowie and Beatles). It’s gratifying to see that a few of my book reviews are read by around 1,500 viewers and that the hits are gathering steam the longer Just Backdated continues, the daily rate now rarely below 600. Last week’s Blondie review is just shy of 500 already and as far as I am aware it hasn’t been shared on any fan or Blondie-related sites, unlike many of my Who posts and a few on Abba, Led Zep and The Beatles.
With regard to JB becoming more established, it’s clear to me that regardless of their subject matter more recent posts seem to get more hits than those from a year ago, let alone when JB was launched at the end of 2013. One of my earliest ever posts was the heartfelt and well-received appreciation of John Entwistle that I wrote for Bass Guitar magazine (which has now had 2,543 hits) and I tend to think that if it was posted for the first time tomorrow I’d get double that. It’s right at the bottom of the Who listings now, but it gets a spike whenever the anniversary of John’s death comes around, even if it is a bit hard to find. This steady increase, of course, is reflected in the shorter time spans between landmarks like 400,000 hits to 500,000 etc.
As for geographical data, the US tops the league with 223,765 followed by the UK (103,523), Russia (37,186), Canada (15,595) and Germany (13,127). The bottom half of the top 10 is occupied by France, Japan, Australia, Ukraine and The Netherlands.
If I add up the hits from the top ten countries I get 417,639 which means over 80,000 hits are from the rest of the world, and I’ve noticed that in the past few months I’ve had hits from South Korea and, more recently, China, so Just Backdated is slowly but surely creeping across the Far East. I’d like to welcome my Chinese followers and, in case they missed the post from April 23, 2015, offer you absolute proof that The Beatles were compatriots of yours.