Music listeners do not need to mourn the decline of CDs and vinyl albums. In 2018, CDs and vinyl made more money for the record labels in America than the digital downloads.
In the Recording Industry Association of America’s (RIAA) “Year-End Revenue Report,” their revenue in 2018 spiked up 12 percent to their highest amounts in over a decade, to $9.8 billion, which was up by one billion from 2017 ($8.8 billion). In a pie chart, statistics revealed that streaming did constitute three-quarters of the market’s revenue, with digital downloads (such as iTunes) at 11 percent and physical units accounting for 12 percent. At the same time, the total subscription revenues went up to $7.4 billion in 2018, from $5.7 billion in 2017.
Four years ago, in 2015, digital retailers and streaming services had an equal share of approximately one-third of the market’s revenue, but ever since, streaming is people’s method of choice for listening to their favorite artists and bands.
In his interview with Digital Journal in August of 2018, Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Glenn Hughes (of Deep Purple fame), affectionately known as “The Voice of Rock,” stated that the resurgence of vinyl is “wonderful” and it has an element of nostalgia to it. “Vinyl is part of my early youth, as a pre-teen. Everybody likes to go back and have that moment in time. I absolutely adore vinyl,” he said.