Vinyl, Vinyl everywhere: The analog record in the digital world

Book chapter


Osborne, R. 2018. Vinyl, Vinyl everywhere: The analog record in the digital world. in: Wolf, M. (ed.) The Routledge Companion to Media Technology and Obsolescence Routledge. pp. 200-214
Chapter titleVinyl, Vinyl everywhere: The analog record in the digital world
AuthorsOsborne, R.
Abstract

In the United States sales of vinyl records have grown tenfold since 2007. While only 988,000 vinyl albums were sold in 2007, a total of 9.2 were sold in 2014. This constitutes 6% of all physical album sales. Meanwhile, 1.2 million units of vinyl were sold in the UK in 2014, the highest sales figure since 1996. Sales of record players are also on the rise in each country, as are the numbers of independent record stores. This activity is not wholly retrospective either: new music is being released on vinyl and many of its consumers are young. Why, out of all analogue formats, has the vinyl record shown not only resilience but growth? In this chapter I provide a brief history of the vinyl record, looking at the key attributes that have contributed to its popularity, including its auditory suitability for recorded music and its visual and tactile appeal. I also look at vinyl’s relationship with the formats that have sought to replace or accompany it: the compact disc, the cassette, the download and the digital stream. Finally, I address the nature of the vinyl revival: what has driven it; what is distinct about current modes of vinyl appreciation; can the popularity of vinyl be maintained?

Research GroupMusic group
LanguageEnglish
Page range200-214
Book titleThe Routledge Companion to Media Technology and Obsolescence
EditorsWolf, M.
PublisherRoutledge
ISBN
Hardcover9781138216266
Publication dates
Print29 Nov 2018
Online21 Nov 2018
Publication process dates
Deposited25 Jan 2019
Output statusPublished
Accepted author manuscript
Copyright Statement

This is an Accepted Manuscript of a book chapter published by Routledge in The Routledge Companion to Media Technology and Obsolescence on 29/11/2018, available online: http://www.routledge.com/9781138216266

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ISBN: 9781315442686 (eBook)

Web address (URL)https://www.taylorfrancis.com/books/9781315442686/chapters/10.4324/9781315442686-14
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