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Rock Ruled Music In 2008: Biggest Sellers Revealed


07/03/2009
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Rock Ruled Music In 2008: Biggest Sellers Revealed was a top story from Jan and here it is again as we look back at the biggest stories from 2009 so far: (antiMusic) The Nielsen Company sent over their year end SoundScan report for 2008 and there were some very interesting results. You know how the music biz keeps crying that the sky is falling? In reality music sales continue to grow and 2008 set a new record. Overall music sales increased over 10% in 2008 to over 1.5 billion.

Overall album sales on the other hand dropped -8.5% to 535.4 million while digital album sales soared 32% to 65.8 million units sold in 2008. While the digital future keeps growing, old school vinyl is making a major resurgence and jumped 89% last year to 1.88 million LPs sold.

Before we get into the top selling artists etc, an interesting side note: while MTV and their assorted channels, radio, and the labels seem to focus a lot of their energy on rap, R&B and country, it appears that alternative, rock and metal are far more popular with record buyers. Rap took a nose dive of almost 20% in 2008 with sales of 33,410 million units, compare that to the 50,476 million metal albums sold. R&B which dominates Top 40 radio only managed sales of 77,014 million (a drop of almost 20% from 2007). Country music was the worst hit in sales decline, falling 24% in 2008 to end up BEHIND metal in sales at 47,657 million. While all genres saw a drop in sales in 2008, it was the rock related ones that declined the least. Alternative CD sales fell -8.7% with 80,919 million units sold. Rock declined -6.5% with 139,666 units sold (interesting almost twice as much as R&B. MTV pay attention to why your ratings are dropping) and metal saw the smallest decline in sales with only a -4.7% drop in 2008.

Who were the biggest sellers of 2008? Taylor Swift came out on top with 4,003,000 units sold. AC/DC roared back in 2008 coming in at No. 2 with sales of 3,418,000. Lil Wayne was 3 with 3,382,000. Coldplay came in fourth with 2,691,000. Metallica was fifth with 2,466,000 with Kid Rock just behind them with 2,405,000 albums sold last year. The rest of the top 10 looked like this:
7. Jonas Brothers (2,340,000)
8. Sugarland (2,063,000)
9. Nickelback (1,953,000) 1
0. Jack Johnson (1,895,000).

Did someone say vinyl sales almost doubled? Here is how the top 10 vinyl albums sales ended up in 2008:
1. In Rainbows/ Radiohead
2. Abbey Road / Beatles
3. Chinese Democracy / Guns N' Roses
4. Funplex/ B-52's
5. Third/ Portished
6. In the Aeroplane… /Neutral Milk Hotel
7. Dark Side of the Moon/ Pink Floyd
8. Fleet Foxes/ Fleet Foxes
9. Death Magnetic/ Metallica
10. O.K. Computer/ Radiohead

- The Nielsen Company included these interesting facts in their report



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