The Hip’s MMP Summer 2016 Setlists

The Tragically Hip just concluded their “Man Machine Poem” tour on August 20, 2016 in Kingston, ON. The team at Macleans did a great public service by going through all of the setlists and counting how often each song was played during the tour. Their chart was a good start, but it has a few issues. The choice to organize the songs in reverse-chronological order is a little strange; the fact that the x-axis has something to do with both time and popularity within album (songs seem to be in descending order within album) might be a little confusing to some. The other reason I wanted to take my own crack at presenting these data is the fact that the first few times I tried to open the page I got a 404 error because Maclean’s subscription was maxed out. So, I thought I’d put together my own highcharter version of the set list data.

Songs played on the Man Machine Poem Tour

As you might have guessed, the Hip drew more songs from their earlier work than their newer stuff, and played those songs more frequently. The most recent record is the exception to the second of those trends, but not the first: A few “Man Machine Poem” cuts got regular play, but only a few of them.

You’ll notice that my version of this chart isn’t perfect either: they played multiple songs from both “Music @ Work” and “In Violet Light”, but the songs were played with the same frequency so they don’t show up too well in this chart. I couldn’t figure out how to create a jitter effect with highcharter.

Album view of the same data

The relative importance of the early stuff is even more ovious when we take an album view rather than a song view (that is, song plays summed to the album level).