It scratches and no algorithm will guide you to your next favourite track, but Britain just can’t get enough vinyl.
Sales of LPs in the UK rose to nearly five million this year, the highest figure in three decades and the 13th consecutive year of growth since 2007, as younger customers as well as baby boomers help to fuel the demand.
Vinyl now accounts for 18 per cent of albums sold in Britain, according to the BPI, the umbrella group for UK record labels. The format is also a boon to artists and record labels, generating almost twice as much in revenues as music video streaming platforms such as YouTube.
Oasis and Kylie Minogue were also popular, while Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours was the top seller
Despite the average vinyl album selling for £21 and the coronavirus temporarily shutting down not only record stores but also the few remaining pressing plants, sales topped 4.8 million, beating last year’s figure of 4.3 million and the highest figure since 1991.
Even cassette tapes sales have risen, with 157,000 purchased in the past year, double the amount last year.
Geoff Taylor, chief executive of the BPI, said: “The surge in sales despite retail closures demonstrates the timeless appeal of collectable physical formats alongside the seamless connectivity of streaming.”
This year’s biggest seller is expected to be Rumours by Fleetwood Mac from 1977. Other big hits on vinyl include Oasis’s 1995 album (What’s The Story) Morning Glory, Amy Winehouse’s 2006 album Back to Black and Nirvana’s 1991 record Nevermind. New studio albums from Harry Styles, Kylie Minogue and AC/DC also fared well, while the most popular cassette was Lady Gaga’s Chromatica.
4.8m vinyl LPs sold in 2020, up from 4.3 million last year, and the highest figure since 1991
13th year of consecutive growth since 2007. Vinyl accounts for 18 per cent of all album sales in the UK
£21 average price for a vinyl album
Tale of the tape
157,000 albums sold on cassette in 2020, up from 80,404 last year, and the highest figure since 2003
8th consecutive year of growth since 2012
£7 average price for an album on cassette
From The Times
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