Album Sales Down 11%

We all could have guessed that album sales are going down with the rise of the age of digital music. Billboard and Variety gave the music world some hard figures this week, confirming that U.S. album sales are down 11 percent from this time in 2007, topping out at 204.6 million in the weeks between December 31 and June 29.

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We all could have guessed that album sales are going down with the rise of the age of digital music. Billboard and Variety gave the music world some hard figures this week, confirming that U.S. album sales are down 11 percent from this time in 2007, topping out at 204.6 million in the weeks between December 31 and June 29. On the other hand, digital music sales are blowing up like fireworks on the 4th of July.

Sales of physical CDS have fallen 16 percent since 2007. Variety claims the drop in CD sales is a side effect of music stores like Virgin and Best Buy downsizing or eliminating their CD products. That leads you to think; which came first, the falling CD sales or the downsizing mega-store?

On a positive note, digital album sales are up, up and up-34 percent to be exact. The 31.6 million units of digital albums sold represent 15.5 percent of album sales this year. It’s a good year to be Universal Music Group, because the top three albums in sales this year have all been released under the label. Lil Wayne’s Tha Carter III has sold 1.5 million units so far, followed by Jack Johnson’s Sleep Through The Static, at 1.2 million units and Mariah Carey’sE=MC2 which sold 1.1 million units (and that’s just mid-point sales for the year.)

While it seems like the CD was in its prime just over a decade ago, that music medium may be seeing the twilight of its years. You never know, CDs might make a comeback like their older, more sustainable brother, vinyl. Vinyl album sales have gone up drastically, already selling 803,000 units in 2008 compared to 454,000 in all of ‘07.



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