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Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

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Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

Old 07-23-12, 12:48 AM
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Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

You'd think everyone who wants to listen to Queen's "Greatest Hits" already owns a copy of the album. But here, you'd be wrong.
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Last week, old albums outsold new ones for the first time since Nielsen SoundScan started tracking U.S. album sales back in 1991. The first half of 2012 brought sales of 76.6 million catalog albums (i.e, albums released more than 18 months ago) as opposed to 73.9 million current albums. Some of the best-selling catalog albums are fairly recent beasts that won't go away (Adele's "19," Taylor Swift's "Speak Now"); some are ancient classics that should be carved into Mount Rushmore ("Dark Side of the Moon," "Licensed to Ill").
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According to Nielsen analyst David Bakula, the primary catalyst for the trend is cost: Catalog albums are usually priced between $5.99 and $10.99, while new albums are often $13-$18. "I really, truly do believe that there probably is a consumer that is buying music here that wasn't buying music in the past," Bakula told the OC Weekly.
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But surely there are other reasons, things that depress the sales of new albums more than they inflate the appeal of old albums: everything from streaming services to the effects of the Long Tail to the overlap in demographics between file-sharers and fans of new music. Right? Plus, y'know, the fact that there's a longstanding bias (masked as "traditional wisdom") suggesting old music is simply better than new music.
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So what is it? Do you buy new albums? Old albums? Would you buy more new albums if they cost less? Is cost even a factor? Are you buying any music at all, old or new, or what?
Old 07-23-12, 12:59 AM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

even if taylor swift inflated the numbers, that news still puts a smile on my face.
Old 07-23-12, 02:48 AM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

also when someone dies, their most popular albums usually experience a boost in sales, obviously
Old 07-23-12, 04:16 AM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

True but not really big musicians had died recently except Whitney a couple months ago.
Old 07-23-12, 08:22 AM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

Originally Posted by JeffTheAlpaca
True but not really big musicians had died recently except Whitney a couple months ago.
I take it you missed the mention of "Licensed to Ill" in the original post.

As for me, I buy primarily new(er) music when the MP3 pricing is right ($5 or less), or when a store like Best Buy has the physical CD on sale on/near release date for $8 or less. I don't buy much catalog stuff unless I find something in the clearance section at Half Price Books for $3 or less.
Old 07-23-12, 09:24 AM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

This is not entirely surprising news. Younger people don't buy albums, for the most part. They torrent or Spotify. Older people who are not as savvy still buy CDs or go to iTunes. And they couldn't care less about Taylor Swift or Adele or Nikki Minaj or whomever.

id like to put taylor swift on my face.
Old 07-23-12, 09:33 AM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

Originally Posted by sniper007
So what is it? Do you buy new albums? Old albums? Would you buy more new albums if they cost less? Is cost even a factor? Are you buying any music at all, old or new, or what?
If it's an artist I already know and love, I'll buy the the physical album if there's some sort of "special" version available. I'll even do this for "new" artists if their music really interests me. If there's not an interesting physical product available, I likely won't pay full price for it.

I will not buy MP3s, WAVs, FLACs, etc. unless they're bundled with physical media.

Even the music I pay for... I hope/expect to be able to hear it on a streaming service, since that's far more convenient. Sure, I paid anywhere from $20 to $350 for a deluxe vinyl special edition of something, but I still want to hear it in my car or at work. Streaming is the best option for that.

If it's not on a streaming service or an interesting physical package, I don't bother listening. I'm not going to waste my time torrenting the music at that point, although I still know people who ONLY torrent their music, despite how much they "love" the specific artists.
Old 07-23-12, 10:38 AM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

I've always been into physical media-only, but it's hard to resist some of these album downloads when Amazon has them for $.99-2.00.
Old 07-23-12, 11:06 AM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

Originally Posted by Hokeyboy
This is not entirely surprising news. Younger people don't buy albums, for the most part. They torrent or Spotify. Older people who are not as savvy still buy CDs or go to iTunes. And they couldn't care less about Taylor Swift or Adele or Nikki Minaj or whomever.
Yep. IMO, the Billboard charts have been an increasingly inaccurate representation of what's truly popular for at least 15 years. This is how you wind up with Neil Diamond going to number one like he did a few years ago.
Old 07-23-12, 03:13 PM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

Originally Posted by Hiro11
Yep. IMO, the Billboard charts have been an increasingly inaccurate representation of what's truly popular for at least 15 years. This is how you wind up with Neil Diamond going to number one like he did a few years ago.
At least the album chart is. The singles chart is still a fairly accurate barometer of overplayed mainstream hits.
Old 07-23-12, 03:35 PM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

This is not surprising before rock and roll took over the top selling musical artists were always geared towards old people.
Old 07-23-12, 10:51 PM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

Originally Posted by Hiro11
This is how you wind up with Neil Diamond going to number one like he did a few years ago.
You're right, Neil Diamond has barely any fans.
Old 07-24-12, 08:29 AM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

Originally Posted by Numanoid
You're right, Neil Diamond has barely any fans.
None at-tall.
Old 07-24-12, 08:51 AM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

Once Spotify arrived, I gave up on physical albums altogether.
Old 07-24-12, 08:59 AM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

Originally Posted by The Bus
Once Spotify arrived, I gave up on physical albums altogether.
I do really miss the artwork and reading the liner notes of the vinyl. Some bands really put some effort into that art.
Old 07-24-12, 10:04 AM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

I wonder if sales of new "albums" might have anything to do with the fact that everything I hear whenever I listen to the radio these days SUCKS?

It seems to me that if a person can open their mouth and sounds come out, some label will give them a recording contract. I've never heard so many new "artists" on the radio as I have within the last couple of years and for the most part they all SUCK.

It's no wonder to me that sales of newer material is down while sales of older material is up. I wouldn't give you a plug nickel for most of the stuff I hear coming out of my speakers these days. -kd5-
Old 07-24-12, 11:05 AM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

I can't say this surprises me. I'll openly admit that I buy less than 5 CDs a year, but I acquire many times that amount. I'd buy catalog titles all day long for under $10 a pop, but the reality is they aren't often priced that low. New albums are even worse. $16 for something I can easily find for free? Try again.
Old 07-24-12, 12:26 PM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

Originally Posted by kd5
I wonder if sales of new "albums" might have anything to do with the fact that everything I hear whenever I listen to the radio these days SUCKS?

It seems to me that if a person can open their mouth and sounds come out, some label will give them a recording contract. I've never heard so many new "artists" on the radio as I have within the last couple of years and for the most part they all SUCK.

It's no wonder to me that sales of newer material is down while sales of older material is up. I wouldn't give you a plug nickel for most of the stuff I hear coming out of my speakers these days. -kd5-
New music doesn't suck. You're just getting old.
Old 07-24-12, 12:43 PM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

Originally Posted by The Bus
Once Spotify arrived, I gave up on physical albums altogether.
I said that at first, but it's not entirely true for me right now. I buy a lot LESS music than I used to, but I'm willing to pay MORE for the stuff I buy if it's special in some way.

Originally Posted by The Cow
I do really miss the artwork and reading the liner notes of the vinyl. Some bands really put some effort into that art.
For "normal" releases, I've mostly stopped caring about that stuff. The artists that still make an effort are the ones offering deluxe packages. I don't immediately buy every deluxe package out there, but every band has fans that WILL pay a little to a lot extra, depending on what they're offering. It's all about finding the right quantities for each "version" to make it profitable.

Originally Posted by Hokeyboy
New music doesn't suck. You're just getting old.
I couldn't agree more.
Old 07-24-12, 02:52 PM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

Originally Posted by Hokeyboy
New music doesn't suck. You're just getting old.
Yeh, you're probably right... -kd5-
Old 07-24-12, 03:36 PM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

New music doesn't suck, but the radio sure as hell does.
Old 07-24-12, 03:39 PM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

I take it you missed the mention of "Licensed to Ill" in the original post.
The Beasties (Yaunch) albums did not sell that well compared to other artists who died and Licensed to Ill was probably the only Beasties album in the top 20 in the Amazon sales chart where as with Whitney or Michael they had at least 8 of their albums in the top 10 immediately after their deaths.

Maybe they did better in digital sales or their audience skews younger.

Most of the old KISS albums you can get under $10.

Metallica will still charge $13 for their older catalog titles.
Old 07-24-12, 03:40 PM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

Originally Posted by Hokeyboy
New music doesn't suck. You're just getting old.
The popular mainstream stuff absolutely do suck. I don't care what age you are.
Old 07-24-12, 04:17 PM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

^ True, but it doesn't suck to children, which is the market it is designed for, or it wouldn't be popular. I'll never understand adults that continue to listen to top 40 radio. This is a product made for and marketed to CHILDREN.

Probably the same people that still put ketchup on their hot dogs.
Old 07-24-12, 06:14 PM
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Re: Old albums outselling new ones for first time ever

Originally Posted by Gunde
The popular mainstream stuff absolutely do suck. I don't care what age you are.
Not all of it sucks. Quit being such a hipster.

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