According to research just published by the Entertainment Retailers Association (ERA), rapid increases in the sale of vinyl mean it has now overtaken even the mighty Playstation brand in physical sales in the UK. Indeed, only Nintendo Switch games are outselling vinyl – although vinyl is catching up rapidly with them too, according to the research.
“Vinyl’s rise and rise seems unstoppable. For a 74-year-old analogue format to eclipse the digital-age technology of games platforms is quite extraordinary. Ten years into its long climb back to favour, the vinyl revival is most definitely here to stay” says ERA head honco Kim Bayley.
Should DJs take note of this?
For DJs, vinyl remains a source of great affection, and even an aspiration to learn for those raised on digital. But we do need to keep this in context. Most Playstation users don’t buy physical games – if we compared the vinyl revenue to that of downloaded/subscription Playstation games, I think we’d see a different picture.
Another clue to what’s really going on: In reporting this story, Mixmag also noted that apparently “32% of all vinyl collectors in the UK reside in Glasgow [Scotland]”. You don’t get statistical anomalies like that unless the numbers overall are small – and indeed, vinyl sales of £82m is tiny compared to sales at the peak of the format (and compared, we would posit, to streaming revenues).
Perhaps the bigger lesson is that old formats never die – the Kindle didn’t kill books, digital photography didn’t kill film, the car didn’t kill the horse (unless it drove into it of course) – instead, older formats find their niches. And there’s no denying that among DJs, vinyl still has a very solid niche of interest.
Read this next: 7 Reasons DJs Still Use Vinyl & Turntables Today
Should you get into it? For most, no (expensive, not much music released on the format) – but if you want to, rest assured it’ll still be here in the decades to come, which is something that wasn’t by any means clear back at the start of the “digital revolution”.