Monday, January 7, 2008

CDs Going the Way of the 8-Track

Reuters reports that album sales sank in 2007, dropping 15 percent. While Josh Groban's Noel and High School Musical 2 sold less than 4 million copies each (small compared to Usher's 8 million albums sold in 2004), overall music sales increased 14 percent with single digital music track sales surging 45 percent. Seems that fragmentation driven by digital distribution is bringing us back to the good old days of rock 'n roll when the 7" single ruled. What will it take to bring back "album rock"? The numbers indicate that younger music consumers may not appreciate the joys of listening to the same artist for 30+ minutes at a time. Or, musicians may be abandoning the form with their labels and producers pushing them toward a focus on the single.

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