In a society where virtually everything is being digitized, one sector is defying the wave -- the music industry. As singers troop to have their music on YouTube and other digital platforms, a number of buyers are moving in the opposite direction.
Stunningly, 72% of those who have been buying music in vinyl format are estimated to be less than 35 years old, according to MusicWatch. Even more fascinating is the fact that NPD Group says that only 42% of the same cohort account for overall music buyers. Despite the convenience offered by the likes of Spotify and iTunes, it seems that the manual spinning of records is a trendy new sensation.
So, what’s the phenomenon all about? Why should young people defy the digital appeal of modern music? Well, for outsiders, it’s baffling. But if you take it from the horse’s mouth -- namely industry experts and music lovers, three things stand out.
First, vinyl lovers say they feel they have some sort of control when they're playing their record collection. Apparently, it feels good when you put on only what you want, at your preferred time, instead of relying on an algorithm to deliver up your sensory experience. This demographic seems similarly apathetic toward letting the radio deejay pre-determine their tunes. Second, there seems to be something charming, even sort of magical with this set, about harnessing the tangible. Spinning discs every twenty or so minutes can allow one to really feel a part of the whole process. Third, it has been said that the quality of and warmth sound of vinyl, is unrivaled.
The record resurgence has put pressure on vinyl outlets to meet the growing demand. Current sales surpass those recorded in the 80's and 90's. In 2014, for example, 87,000 copies of Jack White’s Lazaretto were sold, breaking records -- and the trend continues.
There are those who think the trend is just a passing wind. But if it’s true that numbers don’t lie, then we reliably could forecast that the phenomenon will stick around for some time. And that's not just spin.