In the UK, Taylor Swift drives vinyl sales over CDs for the first time in 35 years

Published 31 Dec 2022 at 11:00 am

Singer Taylor Swift continues to rock British pop. Thanks to the success of his latest album “Midnights”, released in October, the volume of global vinyl sales has exceeded the volume of CD sales in the United Kingdom, an event not seen for thirty-five years, reports “Guardians”.

In just two months, this new opus from the star artist has become the best-selling cross-channel vinyl album of the century, boasting a huge fan base for the 33-year-old singer. Fans have already bought about 80,000 copies, according to the Entertainment Retailers Association (ERA).

Vinyls, the wind in the sails

Around 5.5 million vinyls have been sold this year in the UK, the total of which could exceed sales of CDs by £20 million. By 2021, vinyl sales had increased by 23% to a turnover of £136m, while CD sales had fallen by 4% to £150m.

CD sales have been on a distinctly downward trend in recent years, in the UK and beyond. They peaked in 2000 with 2.45 billion units sold worldwide. Before that, “compact disc” had dethroned vinyl in 1988 and the audio cassette in 1991.

The return of retro

A time that seems very distant today, the majority of music lovers now use digital platforms to listen to songs in streaming. However, vinyl has experienced a new fashion for several years. Among the British, sales have been steadily increasing for fifteen years.

It’s no longer just fans of collector’s albums who buy vinyl today, but also young people, like Taylor Swift fans. Of the ten best-selling vinyl albums this year in the UK, eight were released in 2022. Retro is definitely back and appealing to multiple generations. The health crisis contributed to the trend: music lovers were able to redirect their spending from canceled concerts to tangible listening media.

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