A Journal of Musical ThingsThe Continuing Fade of the CD - A Journal of Musical Things
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Published on January 24th, 2013 | by Alan Cross

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The Continuing Fade of the CD

It’s been forever since a bricks-and-mortar store could say that they sold more music than iTunes.  USA has this look at the rise of digital and the death spiral of the CD.

Music’s digital revolution may not be your father’s vinyl shop, but it’s not only a youth quake anymore.

The takeover has spread so widely that in 2012, for the first time in history, digital stores became the primary outlet for buying albums, eclipsing mass merchants that had been the leading sales sector for the previous five years.

And booming digital sales this month suggest the shift is broadening more dramatically.

“As the days tick by, more people get accustomed to experiencing music digitally,” says Keith Caulfield, Billboard’s associate director of charts/retail. “At the beginning of January, we used to see a huge surge of physical album sales (from cash gifts). Now everyone has iTunes gift cards, and moms and grandparents got their first iPads and iPhones. So Grandma is downloading that Susan Boyle album.”

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About the Author

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.



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