In the modern digital age of Spotify, Netflix and other streaming services, you would expect tangible, physical media sales to pale in comparison and become a niche outlet. Surprisingly, this couldn’t be further from the truth as vinyl sales figures have increased 52% year-on-year. In contrast to this, streaming services became more widely used at a 27% rate. Additionally, vinyl sales accounted for $222 million while streaming revenue reached $163 million.
According to data analyst Joshua Friedlander:
“Overall, the music industry has become the most-digital in terms of all traditional media outlets – magazines, newspapers – in terms of transition. There is more optimism out there than there was. Two-thirds of the market is still physical [CDs]. It used to be monolithic. Now it’s a mix of things, a revenue diversification that makes a more stable source to grow off of. [Streaming] services have mostly grown through word of mouth. There hasn’t been a big Spotify advertising push. When you get a player like Apple involved, that really generates a whole new level of awareness”.
The data from the RIAA is fascinating and exemplifies how popular vinyl is becoming with collectors and music enthusiasts. Clearly, the future revolves around streaming technology, but it doesn’t provide the same satisfaction as owning a huge LP with gorgeous artwork. Pink Floyd’s prism design on Dark Side of the Moon is sublime and a visual masterpiece. Vinyl records also contain extras, printed song lyrics and sometimes divulge information about the recording process. I would hate to see the end of album art cover because some of the classic albums feature some of my favourite pieces of artwork. Storm Thorgerson sadly passed away some time ago and produced a huge array of distinctive artwork for Pink Floyd. Surely in 2015, we can find room to properly honor the classics through our love of vinyl.
Thank you TweakTown for providing us with this information.