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29 December 2021

Vinyl Sales Figures Highest For 30 Years

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Vinyl has continued its remarkable come back, with sales of records the highest for 30 years in 2021, figures show. More than five million vinyl records were sold in 2021 – up by 8% on the previous year, and marking a 14th consecutive year of growth for the format, according to the British Phonographic Industry (BPI).

The BPI has also found that records now make up 23% of all albums purchased in 2021. It is the biggest year of vinyl sales since the early 90s, when the Phil Collins album …But Seriously was the best-selling record. Among the albums leading the way in terms of sales figures are Ed Sheeran’s =, Fleetwood Mac’s 1977 classic Rumours. Adele’s comeback record 30, and ABBA’s reunion album Voyage.

Vinyl isn’t the only retro music format on the rise – there were more than 190,000 cassette tapes purchased last year, which is up a fifth on 2020 sales. It’s the highest number of cassette sales since 2003, when the compilation album Now 54 was the biggest seller.

Sour, the debut album from US pop-rocker Olivia Rodrigo, is thought to be the biggest selling tape of 2021 in the UK, alongside Dave’s We’re All Alone In This Together and Queen’s Greatest Hits.

Geoff Taylor, chief executive of the BPI, Brit Awards & Mercury Prize, said: “It’s a great time to be a music fan, with wider choice on offer than ever before supported by great value.

“Thanks to record label investment into new music and talent, fans can purchase and collect the music they most love on vinyl, CD and even cassette, whilst also enjoying access to over 70 million songs to stream instantly whenever and how often they want, in turn enabling a new generation of artists to create music and sustain successful careers in a global market.”

The BPI will report its final music consumption figures on 4 January 2022.

Predicted bestselling vinyl albums for 2021
1 ABBA – Voyage
2 Adele – 30
3 Fleetwood Mac – Rumours
4 Ed Sheeran – =
5 Amy Winehouse – Back To Black

Predicted bestselling cassette albums for 2021
1 Olivia Rodrigo – Sour
2 Dave – We’re All Alone In This Together
3 Lana Del Rey – Chemtrails Over The Country Club
4 Queen – Greatest Hits
5 Coldplay – Music Of The Spheres

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