Uncharted Territory: DJ BL3ND Takes Top Spot, Diggy Simmons Climbs, Gackt Debuts
This week marks the debut of Billboard Pro, Billboard's new website and service for emerging and independent artists. Billboard Pro members are able to track the online metrics that comprise their Heat Score, which is the formula that drives Billboard Uncharted. Visit the site to learn more and sign up for a four-week free trial.
Now onto the chart: Billboard Uncharted has a new No. 1, and it's DJ BL3ND, the Los Angeles mixmaster also known as "the DJ in the Chucky mask". DJ BL3ND has been a mainstay on the chart since it launched, and finally takes the pole position thanks largely to more than 250,000 song plays on SoundCloud during the chart week. His stardom, which took off on YouTube last year, is a result of his high-energy DJ sets. Read more about him as one of Billboard Pro's Featured Artists.
Taking the No. 2 spot this week is Javier Jofré, the Argentinian singer/songwriter whose heartfelt tunes have earned him more than 18,000 Facebook fans and more than a dozen regional Facebook fan pages, and drew 217,000 song plays on MySpace Music during the chart week. The vocalist and composer enjoyed a breakout tour in the Dominican Republic last year, which landed him numerous television and radio spots.
New to Uncharted this week is Gackt, the Japanese solo artist whose efforts to organize a relief fund for the victims of the recent earthquake and tsunami catastrophe have gained him over 40,000 Twitter followers in the last week. Gackt was the first Japanese artist to release his music catalog on iTunes.
Moving up an impressive 10 spots from No. 37 to No. 27 is Diggy Simmons, the newly 16 year-old son of Run DMC's Reverend Run, who is also a star on MTV's reality series "Run's House". But true to his family legacy he has formidable rap skills and has released several mixtapes, which landed him on Billboard.com's 21 Under 21 last year. His rise on Uncharted is partially due to the 20,000 new Twitter followers he earned during the chart week.
Finally, debuting at No. 49 is Bombay Bicycle Club, the London rock band that won the 2006 "Road to V" competition in order to open that year's V Festival in the UK. The band, now signed to Island, cracked the chart thanks to more than 85,000 song plays on Last FM and more than 3,000 new Facebook fans during the chart week.
To discover new music and get a head start on following the careers of these emerging artists, find the rest of this week's chart on Billboard.com or in Billboard Magazine, and check in with Uncharted Territory every week for more.