Record labels, rejoice — if you’re primarily trying to sell actual records, anyway. Within the RIAA‘s latest report about the status of the music industry — generally, a predictably doom-and-gloom affair, with streaming overshadowing everything and sales down across the board — there is a ray of sunshine to be had. Vinyl, once a borderline-obsolete musical format, has not only been immune to the music industry’s increasingly steep sales decline, it’s actually experienced a recent boom. The New York Times reports:
Among physical formats, CD sales continue to plunge while vinyl records grow into a surprisingly robust niche. Sales of albums on CD fell 19 percent by revenue to $716 million, while LP sales grew 43 percent to $146 million. A decade ago, LP sales were barely significant. But with vinyl now firmly established as a premium-priced collector’s item and an audiophile favorite, they represent about 4.6 percent of the total.
43%! That’s a pretty big increase in this day and age, but as far as music sales are concerned, just about anything is, really. It’s not close enough to offset the overall tumult, of course, but enough to put a smug ol’ smile on Jack White’s face, at least.