Rolling Stone is working on new charts for the music business, but it’s unclear exactly what directions their path to a launch will take. The company announced and almost immediately delayed the launch of its own set of charts, which are currently in a private beta. The charts will be powered by BuzzAngle Music, which received an investment from Rolling Stone parent company Penske Media Corporation last year.
It made the initial announcement during the Music Biz Conference in Nashville. The five new charts it introduced were top 100 songs, top 200 albums, top 500 streaming artists, trending 25 artists, and breakthrough 25 artists. The album chart will be updated daily and the artist-focused lists would see weekly updates.
The presenters gave May 13 as the launch date for the five charts, but Rolling Stone released a statement shortly after the conference to announce a delay to the public beta date. The charts will remain in a private beta for an unspecified amount of time “to optimize with our industry partners and fully ensure the smoothness of our presentation.” The note doesn’t give any detail on how this delay will impact BuzzAngle Music, which was expected to rebrand as Alpha Data with the chart launch.
While it was BuzzAngle Media, the company’s charts offered a counterpoint to the Billboard and Nielsen tracking with its own take on how to assess the industry’s move to streaming. The new charts will continue to offer different values to paid subscription and ad-supported streams. It seems likely that this may simply be a rebranding following the PMC acquisition, and pairing its data with the more well-known Rolling Stone name could get more eyes on BuzzAngle/Alpha Data’s analyses whenever they do launch.