Vinyl Sales Soar in 2022, Outpacing CDs for First Time in 35 Years
The vinyl resurgence shows no sign of slowing down, with the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) reporting that vinyl sales surpassed those of CDs for the first time since 1987. In 2022, vinyl enthusiasts purchased more than 41 million units, representing a 3% increase from the previous year. Meanwhile, CD sales fell by 28%, with only 33 million units sold in 2022.
The top-selling vinyl artist of the year was Taylor Swift, whose album Midnights sold 945,000 copies. Harry Styles followed with Harry’s House selling 480,000 copies. Other notable albums included Olivia Rodrigo’s Sour, Kendrick Lamar’s Good Kid, MAAD City, and Fleetwood Mac’s Rumors.
Despite the vinyl surge, streaming platforms continue to dominate the industry. The RIAA reported that music streaming users grew to 92 million in 2022, a significant increase from 84 million the year before. According to Spotify, Bad Bunny was the most-streamed artist for the third year in a row, while Taylor Swift became the woman with the most streams in the platform’s history.
While streaming remains the primary source of income for the music industry, the resurgence of vinyl highlights the enduring appeal of physical media. Music fans continue to seek out the tactile experience of holding and playing vinyl records, especially for albums with significant cultural and historical value.
As vinyl sales continue to rise, it will be interesting to see how music companies respond to this renewed interest in physical media. In the meantime, fans can enjoy the nostalgia of spinning their favorite albums on a turntable and appreciate the unique sound and aesthetic that vinyl offers.