AfterDawn: Tech news

CD sales continue to die

Written by Andre Yoskowitz (Google+) @ 06 Oct 2009 12:08 User comments (18)

CD sales continue to die Earlier this week, the annual Future of Music Coalition Policy Summit began, allowing musicians, techies, managers, entrepreneurs and critics to meet and find the best ways to make money in a world now dominated by the Internet.
Publicist Ariel Hyatt released some very interesting numbers on the opening day, mainly about U.S. album sales.

There were 115,000 albums were released in 2008, but only 110 were considered "hits," meaning they sold more than 250,000 copies.

On top of that, only 1500 had sales above 10,000 and there was even 6000 albums that did not reach 1000 sales.

Soon enough, it will be blatantly clear that CD sales are dead, and as Greg Kot of the Chicago Tribune says, the recordings "will be more like adverstisements for opportunities that actually do make money: live performances, merchandise, licensing to movies, commercials and video games, ring tones, etc."

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18 user comments

16.10.2009 12:19

One foot in the grave and the other on a banana peel.

Ringtones still make money? Don't smart phones give you the option to create your own from whatever music cip you want?

26.10.2009 12:56

The real question is, now that storage capacities are in the terabytes, and very cheap, why don't online music stores provide the option of uncompressed .wav files, or something similar, so we don't have to put up with taking the hit on quality with crappy sounding mp3s loaded chock-full of who knows what kind of DRM. Don't even get me started about the SACD format. As soon as I can download high quality music from an online store without any DRM, I will be the first to sign up. But sadly, e-tailers will sell you stripped down shit with abysmal quality, and you don't even own anything. If your hard drive craps out and you don't have a backup, then you're screwed. At least if they had some type of a system where your purchase was tied to your name or info somehow, and you could download a song you've bought an unlimited number of times, it may be worth it. Soon it will be like the movie industry, where they try to get saps to buy the same movie in a hundred different formats, and each of those in 15 special editions, director's cut, gold plated, limited edition, big shit in a small box format. Ok I am done.

36.10.2009 18:07

well i think all the blame is the radio stations fault.. think about it 90% of the radio stations are /or going to top 40 only. I've heard lady ga ga on the radio so much that I'm sick of her if I'm that sick of her from the radio only why would I buy her cd or a ticket to a live show

46.10.2009 19:48
H08
Inactive

CD sales are dying mostly from piracy. nobody buys music anymore, not even through itunes.

56.10.2009 20:41

I dunno if I would go all out and say Piracy is the blame for the lack of cd sales. Although it's no doubt a factor, it's probably smaller than say I dunno, the sheer lack of quality of music out there. Just because so many artists pull out so much music doesn't mean that all off them warrant purchasing those albums. Especially if the price tag starts retailing at $20-30 a disc.

I always went the rule of thumb that in order for me to purchase an album, I need to at least enjoy half the song titles on said album to make it worth my time and my $ to purchase. Lets face it, over the years the quality of music hasn't necessarily improved, and by quality I mean having great songs stick in your head for decades to follows. Radio is partly to blame for this as well, I agree with deak91 that constantly replaying songs from the same artist *industry created artists are the worsts*, is what makes music seem distasteful. *Not that it sounds bad, it's just I can't see myself listening to the likes of lady ga-ga in 10 years time, hell even 5*

66.10.2009 21:36

i agree if a cd has 3-4 good songs i"ll buy the cd (back when i still bought cds) but i think radio stations and record companies need to ease up on the music they release to the radio stations back in the 70' and 80' the best part of buying a full record is the few songs that where good that you heard on the radio and finding the hidden gems that were not played on the radio hell now they are pushing out any and everything this make the sales drop i think the artist has become not aggressively creative but aggressively lazy when you compare today to the eighties and nineties

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 06 Oct 2009 @ 21:39

77.10.2009 2:49
shellyg
Inactive

i think ringtones now can make money , the online music didn't provide the ringtones for free , but some website does , in some other fomous site that is not in avalible .

87.10.2009 19:54

When was the last time I bought a cd? My last one was from the Smashing Pumpkins which was a mistake. I do not think cd sales are dying from piracy at all. It is the quality of the music and musicians that is making the cd sales decline. Having 1 or 2 maybe 3 songs that are good are not enough to purchase a whole cd.

98.10.2009 1:25

One way to increase sales of cds would be to add more bonus tracks or instrumentals & acapellas, remixes, etc. A label will re-release an artists "Remastered" CD with just a few bonus tracks, stop being so greedy. The paying public deserves more. Lower the price of cds. They will be obsolete soon.

108.10.2009 13:10

Heh...I used to buy CD's weekly in the 90's.

Now...occasionally a good CD comes out, but two things are different. I didn't hate the music industry back then and music just seemed better with all the new music styles that were coming out. What new style has come out lately that doesn't sound like Nickelback or R&B?

I pirated back then (taped crap off the radio...copied my friend's cassettes), but I still bought plenty of music whenever I could.

118.10.2009 13:17

Originally posted by deak91:
well i think all the blame is the radio stations fault.. think about it 90% of the radio stations are /or going to top 40 only. I've heard lady ga ga on the radio so much that I'm sick of her if I'm that sick of her from the radio only why would I buy her cd or a ticket to a live show
You're......[how do I say this without hurting your feelings]...confused

You see, the radio stations have ALWAYS done that. Variety is not exactly a word that gets tossed around freely at radio stations so to speak. Either way, realistically speaking the main causes are obviously piracy (although I don't think it's THAT big of a deal...at least not as bad as the RIAA makes it out to be) and the fact that most people would rather download and sync at a price, instead of purchase, convert to mp3, then sync. There's just too many steps to go through to get your music on your player...if you're not living in the stone age and use a CD player of course. The last reason is obviously the lack of quality music. When was the last time you actually got an album where MOST of the songs were generally considered "good" or "Great".... for me that was a loong time ago. Linkin Park's Reanimation for me...you can make all the jokes you want but every album that's came out after that from various artists I've only liked 3-4 songs out of the whole thing. It's a shame really..there's just way too much filler in music nowadays. If you look at all the popular bands it's true too. Look at the latest SOAD Album for example......so many songs but why are a lot of them so bad?!


The final thing is...the medium is just terrible. Might as well distribute digitally..if you're smart.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 08 Oct 2009 @ 13:28

128.10.2009 14:09

No body is looking at the obvious. I am a 60 year old Rock N Roller,
and I truly believe the reason CD sales are in the toilet, are two fold, First people today do not sit down to actually "listen" to music.
Music has become something to fill the background of their lives, to sell products or as an added part of the entertainment systems, like movies, video games and net surfing.

Second and most importantly, the music today just flat SUCKS!!!
I have been buying, collecting and listening to Rock for 46 years, I collect vinyl records with nearly 5000 vinyl albums that run the the gamut of rock from 1963 to current releases on vinyl and I own some damn fine audio gear to listen with.

To prove my point, the release of the new Beatles remasters for two weeks, this 40 year old music held 16 of the top 25 slots for sales.
Why, because that is real rock music whether you like the Beatles or not, there is damn little of today's music that even comes close to the quality and soul of what real rock is about.
The only two bands that have even come close have been Velvet Revolver and Chickenfoot.

And again the fact that people do not listen to music in a conventional way is in the proof of how few people actually own a real music system. Think for a moment as to all the people you know, and of them, how many own an actual stereo or sound system just for music listening? Amazing isn't it?

Like I said, in our present culture music has become a background enhancement or a distraction, rather than a medium of enjoyment and entertainment.
Another example of new music sucking so bad, is to look at concert ticket sales. only a mere hand full of new bands can pull in paid tickets, while these 40 year old bands with only one original member sell out at every event. A look at the top 100 albums in sales consistently shows sales of these 40 year old albums.

So what then? until the music business goes back to being run by music people instead of a bunch of MBA suits, whose only concern is dollar bills rather than producing music, and real artists, rather than media driven faces and hot bodies with music and voices created by pro tools rather than true talent the music industry will totally collapse, and a new medium or format will not save it, and the only source of truly good music will be your local bar band.

Donald Bowman

138.10.2009 17:39
stimpy120
Inactive

It's the price that is keeping most people away. I bought the new KISS cd "Sonic Boom" this week at Walmart and it came with the "Sonic Boom" cd and a "Classic KISS" cd and a KISS DVD with some video from there concert in Brazil this year all for $12.00. Now thats what I call a deal! Why can't the other cds from other bands be like this?

1410.10.2009 21:07

Quote:
Originally posted by deak91:
well i think all the blame is the radio stations fault.. think about it 90% of the radio stations are /or going to top 40 only. I've heard lady ga ga on the radio so much that I'm sick of her if I'm that sick of her from the radio only why would I buy her cd or a ticket to a live show
You're......[how do I say this without hurting your feelings]...confused


confused?? how is that being confused ???? why buy the cd if the radio stations play all the songs that are hits from the cd top 100 all day all night on more than 15 t0 20 stations i get to listen to them for free right there i saved 25-30 bucks and thats just regular radio not tv, digital tv music radio, mtv, mtv2, bet, vh1 or any other music outlet other that regular radio hell any of them i can record and put on my ipod burn(music or video)to a cd or make a ringtone the simple fact is if its everywhere then there is no need to go buy it

1510.10.2009 21:21

Quote:
Quote:
Originally posted by deak91:
well i think all the blame is the radio stations fault.. think about it 90% of the radio stations are /or going to top 40 only. I've heard lady ga ga on the radio so much that I'm sick of her if I'm that sick of her from the radio only why would I buy her cd or a ticket to a live show
You're......[how do I say this without hurting your feelings]...confused


confused?? how is that being confused ???? why buy the cd if the radio stations play all the songs that are hits from the cd top 100 all day all night on more than 15 t0 20 stations i get to listen to them for free right there i saved 25-30 bucks and thats just regular radio not tv, digital tv music radio, mtv, mtv2, bet, vh1 or any other music outlet other than regular radio hell any of them i can record and put on my ipod burn(music or video)to a cd or make a ringtone the simple fact is if its everywhere then there is no need to go buy it please remember its cd sales they are trying to keep and its an old sales format in an ever changing medium if they dont adjust and change they will not be able to get new artist because they will see that they can not read how the public want the music sold to them

1611.10.2009 9:14

Okay ygor's 60. I'm 61. Still have my Pioneer receiver/amp from 1971. Pretty much gave up on records and tapes though. Ocassionally buy a cd or music dvds. Download from utube. Classic rock? It's good, but too confined. Moved on to metal and hard rock. Ever listen to Monster Magnet? Saw Motley Crue' Carnival of Sins on the satellite and had to rent it. Yes this music contains restricted material but life is restricted nowadays. Watch what you say in public!

1713.10.2009 7:39

What utter crap
The reason for the continuing drop in sales is because the record labels still pushing the levels beyond the capabilities of the replay equipment.
The recent release of the Beatles Remasters has proved a small point where the heavy compression levels were removed and the signals were allowed to naturally peak above -3dB, which is a good start but still too high to make any real difference.
Recent agreements with AES and APRS have now set the levels at -3dB but the record labels are ignoring them, we await the first prosecution - EMI first, if these two bodies have any balls.

People stil want to buy CD's and more advanced formats like SACD and DVD-A but the children in the record labels are so arrogant that they ignore everyone above their age and think they are cutting edge when they are causing the format to die.
You will be amazed as to how many bands want old style recording and mastering levels.

1814.10.2009 13:54

Thank you Donald Bowman for FINALLY providing an intelligent reason for the decline in CD sales. I hadn't thought about quite in that way, but yeah---very few people really LISTEN to music anymore. It's a major drag for collectors like me who believe in high-quality, permanent physical media collections. Now they're telling us we have to shell out money for music subscriptions which means paying over and over again for the same music. Forget that. I'll start stockpiling CD players now.... My mother is 77 and can still play the LP she bought in 1958 for the cost of a turntable and a bit of electricity. Something tells me no one will be able to say the same thing about an MP3 file in the year 2060.

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