When the CD was first released the “experts” deemed that the vinyl LP was “dead”; only to see the dwindling numbers bounce back as the 12 inch discs became “collector’s items”.

Today the “experts” are claiming that the CD and the LP are “dead” because streaming has taken over as the primary format when it comes to listening to music…at least in the United States.

And while music streaming makes up 84 percent of all revenues, the RIAA – Recording Industry Association of America – states that sales of physical music items has increased by double digits over the past year…and has seen an increase for the ninth year in a row.  LP’s have outsold CD’s 23 million and 15 million respectively.

In the first half of 2023, the RIAA has announced that music – whether it be physical sales or streaming subscriptions has earned over $8 Billion.  Subscriptions make up 78 percent of the streaming revenues.

RIAA Chairman and CEO Mitch Glazier spoke on the recent report saying, “this report describes a thriving, growing music ecosystem that continues to reach new heights and shape our culture. And it reflects the creative human genius and hard work of all the artists, songwriters, labels, publishers, and services who make the music happen and meet fans and audiences where they are in today’s forward looking and innovative music community.” 

It should be noted that when it comes to counting “sales” for award certifications the RIAA equals a single sale of a song to 1,500 streams of that song.  And the artists earns tenths of a cent in royalties for each of those streams.

The only area where the RIAA saw a drop was in the digital download sales, which account for just three percent of overall revenues.