I saw a lot of griping on line about this year’s Record Store Day – prices too high, some indie stores not being able to participate, more focus on the large retailers and presses etc…. The stores that I visited were busy and the store owners seemed happy with sales. I bought a couple of records that I actually had hoped to find – that’s always nice – but honestly, I dropped $66 for two discs – that’s a lot by my standards. And, the quality of one of the discs was not great.
All that said, reports are that sales were up again to record levels.
The official figures have been released, and they indicate a resounding success story for vinyl around the world with numbers for RSD 2018 smashing all previous records since its inception in 2007. Worldwide data from the 11th annual Record Store Day indicates the third-largest weekly numbers around the world for vinyl record sales since they were tracked back in 1991. Both Nielson In the US and Official Charts Company in the U.K. noted that it was the biggest event in the history of the day, with sales jumping up 16% from the previous RSD in 2017.
Billboard reported that the day helped showed sales of an incredible 733,000 vinyl albums during week in the U.S. alone, with the U.K. reporting 60,000 albums and 30,000 singles sold. This even was originally intended to support independent record stores and does appear to be achieving this with 580,000 of those unit sales coming from indie retailers. Without these sales, overall numbers for the day would have dropped by 2.5.%.