Published: Wed, September 16, 2020

Vinyl records outsell CDs in U.S. for first time since 1980s

Vinyl records outsell CDs in U.S. for first time since 1980s

A report on the first half of 2020 across the recorded music industry reads: "Vinyl album revenues of $232m were 62% of total physical revenues, marking the first time vinyl exceeded CDs for such a period since the 1980s".

The last time vinyls were ever this popular, music groups like Mr. Mister and the Pet Shop Boys were chart-toppers, Newser reported.

Vinyl records have outsold CDs in the United States for the first time since the 1980s, according to data from the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).

Vinyl records, also known as "records pressed on wax", were commonplace before other formats, such as cassette tapes and CDs, become the preferred mode of listening to music. Will vinyls' resurgence continue? Major physical retailers such as Urban Outfitters have played a key role in vinyl's continued growth, while the older generation of record stores have seen a revitalization that has helped to somewhat offset the dwindling interest in CDs. Because 2005, earnings for vinyl have increased tremendously.

According to that report, vinyl sales peaked in Australia in 1987 when the format was raking in $80 million a year. At the first half 2020, vinyl sales was up 4 percent, while CD sales was down 48 percent, according to the RIAA. Concerts and visits to concerts are all gone.


For streaming services only, more and more listeners are willing to pay to play.

Streaming services brought in a total of $4.8b, a 12% boost over the first six months of previous year. Paid streaming service subscriptions, such as Spotify and Apple Music, increased by 24%, RIAAreported.

Streaming represented a whopping 85% of all recorded music revenue in the first half of the year with physical at 7%, downloads at 6% and synchs at 2%.

So far, overall music industry sales have grown 5.6%, mainly driven by streaming, for a total of $5.7 billion during the first six months of this year, alone.

Like this: