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Next Big Sound to close

By | Published on Monday 4 October 2021

Next Big Sound

Twelve years after launching – and six years after being acquired by Pandora – music analytics platform Next Big Sound has announced that it is shutting down. Its team will now move over to Pandora’s Artist Marketing Platform.

“It’s been a wild ride”, says Next Big Sound’s Business Analyst Jay Troop in a blog post. “After twelve years of tracking music data across hundreds of thousands of artists and hundreds of billions of streams, it’s time to say goodbye. Next Big Sound will be shutting down on 1 Nov 2021”.

Troop goes on to explain that this is “the final step of a multi-year transition”, adding that “Pandora’s AMP tools have been the primary focus of our development and growth for two years already”.

Pandora acquired Next Big Sound in 2015, after rival music data start-ups The Echo Nest and Musicmetric were purchased by Spotify and Apple respectively.

As with those platforms, once NBS had been taken over by one particular streaming service, the other streaming platforms stopped providing their data to it. As a result, and as with The Echo Nest and Musicmetric, the focus increasingly became data projects within the parent company, although NBS lived on as a brand.

Pandora had launched AMP seven months earlier, and it seemed likely that the Next Big Sound acquisition was an attempt to improve that service. Indeed, I’m not sure at the time anyone expected it to take six years for the two platforms to fully merge.

Still, there are some services that Next Big Sound continued to offer after the Pandora acquisition that will not be available to users following the transition of the set-up to AMP.

“After a lot of deliberation, we have decided that Next Big Sound social data is not going to be moving over to AMP with us”, says Troop. “We’ve decided to focus our team’s efforts on giving artists valuable, actionable insights to help them grow and monetise their fanbases on Pandora”.

“This means that it’s also time to say goodbye to the Pandora Predictions chart”, he adds. “Our Next Big Sound Predictions were always intended to be a look across streaming and social media to identify artists on the rise, so with these social data sources going away we’re going to retire the Predictions chart as well”.