Streaming

Pandora Is Shutting Down Next Big Sound

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The music analytics service will be fully absorbed into Pandora's Artist Marketing Platform (AMP), ending its life as a standalone brand.

Six years after Next Big Sound was acquired by Pandora, the music analytics platform is going quiet. In a blog post published Friday, the brand said it will be shutting down effective Nov. 1.

“It’s been a wild ride,” reads the post, signed by "The Next Big Sound Team." “After 12 years of tracking music data across hundreds of thousands of artists and hundreds of billions of streams, it’s time to say goodbye.”

The post characterizes the platform’s closure as “the final step of a multi-year transition,” adding that the Next Big Sound team “is excited to focus on improving and expanding” Pandora’s Artist Marketing Platform (AMP), which provides artists with streaming data around their music on the service. The AMP tools have been a focus for Next Big Sound since shortly after Pandora’s acquisition of the company in 2015. Moving forward, AMP will continue sharing Pandora streaming data with Next Big Sound partners including Billboard, MRC Data and Chartmetric.

Next Big Sound adds it is working to ensure that the integration process “is as seamless as possible for all of our users and partners," noting that full track-level reporting is already available in Pandora’s AMP dashboard. That said, there will be some changes once the brand fully shutters at the start of November. In perhaps the biggest news on that front, Next Big Sound will not be moving its trove of social media data over to AMP. This means that the Pandora Predictions chart – which harnessed both social and streaming data to highlight artists on the rise – will be discontinued. Notably, the post points Next Big Sound's current users to Chartmetric, another music analytics service where artists can track their social media data.

Next Big Sound's programming notification emails, which update artists on where their music is being programmed on Pandora, will be making the transition over to AMP, albeit "with a new look and feel." Lastly, its Pandora charts -- Top Spins, Trendsetters and the recently-launched Top Thumb Hundred -- will also be continued, albeit with "a facelift and some tweaks." All three charts will continue to be curated weekly, with chart emails to resume once the development of AMP's new email system is completed in a few months.

Launched in 2009, Next Big Sound was a trailblazer in the music analytics space, compiling data from multiple streaming services into a single dashboard. In May 2015, it was snapped up by Pandora in the wake of Spotify and Apple’s acquisitions of two of Next Big Sound’s music data competitors: The Echo Nest and Musicmetric's parent company Semetric, respectively. Following Pandora’s purchase, the DSP's rivals ceased providing data to Next Big Sound, which pivoted its efforts to working on projects within the Pandora ecosystem.