Music sales are following the trend established over the oast several years: Digital Sales Up, Physical unit sales down, and overall revenue sliding further.

• Total album sales fell to 428.4 million units, a drop of 8.5%  (2007 = 500.5 million).

• Physical album sales fell 20% to 362.6 million (from 450.5 million)

• Digital album sales rose 32% percent to 65.8 million units;

• Digital track sales were up 27%, breaking the 1 billion mark for the first time at 1.07 billion.

• Total transactions rose 10.5% to 1.5 billion;

• All Genres saw losses: Classical music dropped 26%; Country fell 24%; Latin was off 21.1%;

• Vinyl album sales also grew with 1.88 million vinyl albums purchased for the year.

Concerts saw higher revenue, due primarily to higher ticket prices. For the 100 top-grossing shows:

• Box-office receipts from North American concerts were $4.2 billion, up 7.8%;

• Average ticket prices cost $66.90, up 8%;

• Number of tickets sold fell 3%, to 35.6 million

Top 10 highest-grossing tour of 2008 in North America:

Madonna – $105 million
Celine Dion – $94 million
Eagles – $73.4 million
Kenny Chesney – $72.2 million
Bon Jovi – $70.4 million
Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band – $69.3 million
Neil Diamond – $59.8 million
Rascal Flatts – $55.8 million
The Police – $48 million
Tina Turner – $47.7 million

Data via Pollstar

Previously:
CD Sales Plummet 15%; Digital Sales Gain 45% (January 2008)

http://www.ritholtz.com/blog/2008/01/cd-sales-plummet-15-digital-sales-gain-45/

Sources:
Album sales continue to slide in ’08
Music industry down 14% from last year
PHIL GALLO

http://www.variety.com/VR1117997892.html

GIGONOMICS: NOW ROCK BANDS MUST SING FOR THEIR SUPPER
INTELLIGENT LIFE magazine, Winter 2008

http://www.moreintelligentlife.com/story/gigonomics-now-rock-bands-must-sing-their-supper

Album sales plunge, digital downloads up
Trend is troubling for struggling music industry as sales fall in all genres
AP, 5:13 p.m. ET, Thurs., Jan. 1, 2009

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/28463074/

Music sales up 10% in 2008, thanks to downloads (and vinyl)
Jacqui Cheng
Ars Technica, January 02, 2009 – 01:30PM CT

http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20090102-music-sales-up-10-in-2008-thanks-to-downloads-and-vinyl.html

Concert Industry Bucks the Recessionary Trend
ETHAN SMITH
WSJ, JANUARY 5, 2009, 10:39 A.M. ET
Tickets Sold Slip, but Higher Prices Fuel an Increase

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123068161346644043.html

Category: Markets, Music

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

16 Responses to “Music Sales 2008”

  1. rob says:

    WTF??? <> Barry – Surely this is a joke! Who still buys vinyl? I would have figured for sure this was a dead technology!

  2. rob says:

    Oops… for future reference, don’t quote anything on here using brackets. The above should have been WTF??? “Vinyl album sales also grew with 1.88 million vinyl albums purchased for the year.” Surely….

  3. Sharon C says:

    I sure hope they’re building nice concert halls in the nursing homes… looks like that’s where the money will be. I was rather shocked at the lineup on the top 10 for concerts. Re the vinyl… my kids buy more of them then CD’s, they really like mixing “the oldies”

  4. That’s funny, I was fixin’ to note that this: “Vinyl album sales also grew with 1.88 million vinyl albums purchased for the year.”–was, incredibly, encouraging.

    For those that missed the ‘Memo’: MP3′s, for music, Blow.

  5. bcreeda says:

    I am a new reader and sending this from New Zealand, so perhaps you do math(s) differently than us, but my kiwi eyes tell me that your first stat is incorrect.

    Total album sales fell to 428.4 million units, a drop of 8.5% (2007 = 500.5 million).

    The drop would be 14.4%, not 8.5%.

  6. going broke says:

    I’m amazed that the “Eagles” still bring in that much. Seen ‘em many times last 30+ years, never disappoint.

    @bcreeda… it’s possibly the new “Madoff Math” that’s sweeping the world, probably coming to your area soon.

  7. Che Stadium says:

    Its good to see that I’m not the only one buying vinyl. As far as the old acts go, I hope there will be a US tour by Blue Cheer in 2009.

  8. asiankida says:

    I don’t buy vinyl, but that’s mostly because I have limited space and am not that big of an audiophile. I personally still buy CD’s because I can’t justify shelling out cash for something so fleeting and intangible as an mp3. If it’s an album I feel that I can listen to over and over again, then I will make the purchase because I consider it as an investment.

  9. JohnnyVee says:

    A roomate in collage(-I like the spelling better than college) dragged me to a Bruce Springsteen concert–I wasn’t a fan at the time. It was the best live concert I have ever seen. And, I saw KISS back in the day.

  10. Jojo99 says:

    I brought a bunch of CD’s – but they were mostly all used. I rarely buy new. I think a lot of people buy used CD’s also but the industry doesn’t appear to have any way to track used CD sales.

    The used stores I frequent also seem to have a lot of used vinyl which again, I doubt are tracked.

    I never buy digital. MP3′s sound too crappy and besides I can make my own digital copies if desired at my own chosen bit rate.

  11. Used CDs have been a fascinating data point for many years — I’ve been working on massaging some data together on this for quite some time

  12. I guess somewhere along the line I became a curmudgeonly old fogey.. When bands start sounding like other, earlier bands… Granted, it might be nice to take in live music, but even then “it’s too loud!”.

    Can I really be that old? Or is there that much more chaff out there that it makes wheat so much harder to find? (Or is it that “back in my day”, MTV actually _played_ music videos, and radio stations had a playlist longer than 30 songs? WLIR/WDRE FTW…)

    Frankly, the newest music I have comes from the ‘music of YTMND’ collections… (otherwise I’d never have heard of Dragonforce, Electric Six, Coburn, etc…)

  13. jason says:

    Madonna – $105 million
    Celine Dion – $94 million
    Eagles – $73.4 million
    Kenny Chesney – $72.2 million
    Bon Jovi – $70.4 million
    Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band – $69.3 million
    Neil Diamond – $59.8 million
    Rascal Flatts – $55.8 million
    The Police – $48 million
    Tina Turner – $47.7 million

    From this data it looks like only Geezers can afford to go out to shows…what do the kids do these days? Is it that MP3′s have finally killed the mega acts and fragmented the scene?

  14. gloppie says:

    I only buy Vinyls at thrift stores, Goodwill, Salvation Army and the like. $1 is my price limit for an album.
    There is great music to be enjoyed for cheap.
    Mp3 is bad for your ears, it will deplete your enjoyment of Music overtime. Mp3 uses masking algorithms to remove what the human hearing “can’t hear”. If it was played, it can be heard, trust me. By removing it, this encoding desensitizes your ear/brain. After a while, yes you can’t hear it, anymore. Shame on them.
    Digital Audio (non-lossy) is ok, with enough bits (>24bits) and high enough sampling rate (>96 Khz)
    Needless to say, most current production is not to my liking.

  15. fiveboroughs says:

    Hey Barry, since the new design lost the running sidebar of music, how about top 10 albums of 2008?

  16. skyhirecords says:

    Rap was down 30% in 2007 and everyone had a field day. How much is it down 2008 ????. Classical music dropped 26% but not a comment?????

    http://www.ritholtz.com/blog/2008/01/cd-sales-plummet-15-digital-sales-gain-45/