The pandemic and self-isolation have sparked a surge of interest in vinyl records, which has taken the music market by surprise. Moreover, the driving force behind this demand is youth. We will tell you how the industry is adapting to the new reality.
Eternal hits: demand for vinyl records is backAlexandra Lyzhina
Streaming continues to dominate the music market. So, back in 2019, it accounted for 80% of all revenue in this industry. However, vinyl did not repeat the fate of CDs or floppy disks: this format is still relevant because it offers an experience that cannot be obtained when listening to music from a phone.
The statistics speak for themselves.
- According to Recording Industry Association of AmericaIn 2020, for the first time since 1986, vinyl record sales in the United States surpassed CD sales.
- 2021 is also breaking records, with sales growth of 108% in the first 6 months compared to the same period in 2020, according to CNBC.
Thus, in contrast, during a pandemic and a general downturn in retail, music stores have benefited. Many music lovers had more time to listen to albums at home and decided to expand their record collections.
According to Billy Fields, a resident vinyl market expert at Warner Music Group, the reason for this is simple: “It’ll always be cool.”
“I listen to music on streaming services around the clock every day. But vinyl recording is an opportunity to make it tactile, ”says Gigi Lone, an undergraduate student at the University of Toronto. – You really can’t get emotions like this through Spotify. It is simply the possession of what is dear to you. “
“Of course there is a clear fashion trend effect here,” says Chip Hoisler, owner of the Tunes music store in Hoboken, New Jersey. “But there’s something about that when we take the record out of the sleeve and put it on the turntable. And the characteristic crackling on old copies only adds to the impressions. “
For many, vinyl records have become something like prints and paintings – works of art that can be displayed at home.
“The album cover, the aesthetics of the record itself, the grooves on the surface – that’s what attracts me,” says Lone. “And I like it when people hang them on the walls. It’s part of the culture. “
The growing demand for vinyl is causing unrest in the music industry as it disrupts the production and supply chain.
Hypermarkets such as Walmart, Amazon and Target saw an opportunity to make money and started selling vinyl records. They now account for 13% of all sales, up from 4% in 2018, according to Billboard. But that also means they place a lot more orders than independent record stores and vinyl makers can handle.
As a result, consumers face order delays, and even the world’s largest performers wait months for their vinyl to hit the shelves.
For example, Taylor Swift announced a re-release of her album, Red, a few months earlier to ensure that a vinyl version would be available by the time of release.
Although sometimes delays with vinyl records play into the hands of the performers. For example, Swift’s latest album Evermore returned to No. 1 after the vinyl version was released.
Of course, the development of technology leads to the fact that certain forms of information carriers are becoming obsolete. But vinyl remains timeless thanks to its “cool” effect.
Cover photo: Kamyshnikova Victoria /
Source: RB.RU by rb.ru.
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