Do Us A Tape! Cassette Sales Grew By 74% In 2016

From What Hi-Fi

It’s not just vinyl that’s seen a revival in recent years – sales of cassette tapes were on the rise in 2016.

Unless you’ve been living under a rock these last few years you’ll be all too aware of the vinyl revival that has taken place. Whether a desire for a physical product in the age of streaming, a love of the vinyl sound or simply a form of nostalgia, vinyl sales have become a slightly chunkier slice of the music pie in recent years.

Now it seems cassette tapes are the latest retro audio format to enjoy a resurgence. Nielson Music reports that cassette album sales in the US increased by 74 per cent year-on-year in 2016.

But before you rush to check the share price of BASF or start dusting-off your Nakamichi Dragon, we should point out that 2016 sales totalled a meagre 129,000, up from 74,000 in 2015. This, as Billboard reports, is a tiny share of the more than 200 million albums sold in total in the US last year, 13.1 million of which were on vinyl.

Nevertheless, cassettes have seen a mini resurgence. And once again, high-street store Urban Outfitters has played its part. Not content with shifting serious numbers of vinyl records and (not very good) Crosley turntables, the store has also released exclusive cassette tapes from artists including Justin Bieber and The Weeknd, helping to boost sales.
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