Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Daft vinyl comeback

Daft Punk like vinyl. Photo: Wax Poetics/ Nabil Elderkin with Warren Fu
This story has been getting a ton of coverage online... NME: Daft Punk's 'Random Access Memories' becomes Amazon's best selling vinyl album ever [well, since 1999]

Which is hardly surprising, since it has probably has had the biggest vinyl production run of any recent contemporary release, at a guess.

Engadget came up with this delightful headline... Amazon vinyl sales up 745 percent since 2008, 8-track mulling comeback. Shot, Engadget.

The Independent ran a vinyl comeback story recently (picked up here by the Weekend Herald last Saturday) which has the usual huge percentage rise, but gives them some much needed context with solid numbers, something often missing from these vinyl comeback puff pieces...

Independent: Why vinyl is Top of the Pops... thanks to Daft Punk, Bowie and Led Zeppelin

"... independent record shops, which account for 50 per cent of all vinyl sales, saw a 44 per cent increase in album sales in the first half of 2013.

Paul Firth, the head of music at, said: "There's the obvious impact of one very big release this year – Daft Punk – but beyond that there's a general support for vinyl amongst the labels right now. Most big releases come with a vinyl edition now, which hasn't always been the case.......What's perhaps most incredible about vinyl sales is their outperformance of CDs. While sales of the format surged 15 per cent last year to reach their highest level since 2004, CD sales declined nearly 20 per cent.

It's the same in the US, where sales of the format rose 33.5 per cent in the first half of the year.
But despite the figures, vinyl is still a niche product. UK album vinyl sales last year were 389,000, compared to CD sales of 69.4 million. Amazon did not disclose specific sales numbers but Mr Firth indicates sales on the site are still in the thousands.

Mr Castaldo admits vinyl is still less than 2 per cent of all music sales, but adds: "The industry feels there could be very optimistic times."

And while we're on the vinyl comeback...I've run this previously, but here you go....

Attention media types: How to write the 'vinyl is making a comeback' story

1. Find a young person to say something 'cool' about vinyl.

2. Quote some statistic on the increase in vinyl sales with absolutely no context for what that means for overall sales for the music industry.

3. Find a local record shop with a crusty old owner who can talk about the joys of LPs and the tangible experience you don't get with MP3s. Also, get them to describe their clientele and how young they are these days.

4. Highlight that it's not just vintage vinyl that is undergoing a resurgence, but new vinyl is being released too, from 'modern artists' like Adele and Justin Beiber.

AND YOU'RE DONE. Nice way to cover 'a passing fad', as one acquaintance put it recently.....

Oh. And this: Whole Foods Markets Selling GMO-Free Vinyl Albums In Southern California.

Because HIPPIES.... ugh.

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