Shazam, already a leading source for music discovery across the world, plans to take that one step further in 2018 with the announcement of its Next to Know platform.
The initiative, which begins in January, will present four artists each month that Shazam’s staff believes could be among the next breakthrough acts in music, pulling from tagging data from its users as well as staff curation. Once an artist is chosen, they will not be featured again, meaning the program will have a roster of 48 by year’s end.
“A Shazam is a strong signal that a music fan loves a song and is proactively looking for more information,” Julian Marshall, global head of content, Shazam, says. “In previous years, our data has helped highlight household names way ahead of them breaking into the mainstream. However, we’ve seen a change in how quickly an artist can break and we want to reflect that, too. That’s why, every month, we will update ‘Next to Know’ with four artists who are about to break out.”
To ring in the new year, Shazam has announced a crop of 10 artists who its team of curators believe are poised for a U.S. breakthrough in 2018, all of which could, according to Shazam, be featured as part of its Next to Know class in one of the upcoming months.
They include: dance duo Sofi Tukker; R&B/pop singer Jessie Reyez; “do re mi” artist blackbear; Norway’s Sigrid, K-pop superstars BTS; alt-pop teen Billie Eilish; English singer-songwriter Tom Walker; Lil Pump, whose “Gucci Gang” recently peaked at No. 3 on the Billboard Hot 100; “Let You Down” rapper NF; and country music’s Devin Dawson.
Already, a few of the above artists are showing signs of future success on the Billboard charts. Along with Lil Pump’s “Gucci Gang” success, NF’s “Let You Down,” his first song on the Hot 100, reaches a new peak of No. 16 on the latest chart (Dec. 30), while BTS has led the Social 50 chart for a combined 53 weeks and recently scored its first top 40 song, “Mic Drop,” at No. 28 (Dec. 16). Additionally, Sofi Tukker’s “Best Friend” is rising up the Alternative Songs and Pop Songs airplay charts following its inclusion in an ad for the iPhone X, and “All on Me,” Dawson’s debut single, has peaked at No. 14 on Country Airplay.