In Thursday’s (4/11) Washington Post, Caitlin Dewey writes, “It looks like all those Record Store Days might have paid off: According to a new industry report, vinyl record sales in 2012 hit their highest point since 1997—you know, the same year Radiohead released ‘OK Computer’ and Hanson’s ‘MMMBop’ topped the charts. The report, published by the quaintly-named International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, tallies $171 million in global vinyl sales in 2012, up 52 percent from the year before. That echoes other reports, including Nielsen’s most recent Soundscan, which have found strong growth in vinyl sales over the past five years—not to mention a steady uptick in vinyl-related Kickstarters and analog fan blogs. … It also probably helps that independent record stores and labels have, since 2008, made a concentrated effort to market vinyl. Every third Saturday of April, labels offer limited-edition vinyl records at some 700 independent stores. The event has morphed into something of a cultural phenomenon, and independent stores have, per Nielsen, seen a gain in sales. Many labels have also begun promoting records in other ways: packaging them with MP3 download codes, for instance, or selling them as part of collectors’ bundles.”

Posted April 12, 2013