Fate of College Radio Charts Uncertain at CMJ After Almost 40 Years
One of the remaining bastions of the college-rock era has fallen silent, at least for now. For the second week in a row, CMJ has not published its weekly college radio charts, calling into question the fate of an institution that has tracked the music played by college stations around the country since 1978. No date has been set for when the venerable—and, once, invaluable—charts will resume.
Adam Klein, who owns CMJ through his Abaculi Media, has not responded to Pitchfork’s requests for comment on the matter. The charts typically go out on Tuesday afternoons. On Tuesday, February 7, in an email to radio promoters and publicists obtained by Pitchfork, Klein said the charts might resume by the end of last week, and would “definitely” be back this week. On Tuesday, February 14, in another email viewed by Pitchfork, Klein told the CMJ community, “There will not be charts this week and I will let you know where we stand on timing before the end of the week.”
The chart hiatus is just the latest in a series of setbacks for CMJ. The last-known remaining employee, Lisa Hresko, recently took a new job with indie-label trade group A2IM. And last year’s lack of a CMJ Music Marathon, for the first time in the event’s 35-year-history, came despite Klein’s assurance it “absolutely” would happen in 2016.
Here is Klein’s February 7 email to radio promoters:
Hi – regarding CMJ charts today – Unfortunately with Lisa’s departure we are scrambling a little – we will hopefully have this week’s charts up later in the week, but definitely will be back next week and stabilizing our service rapidly.
We are so sorry for this break here break here but will be in…