Music Blog: The End of HMV and Musical Evolutions

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death from above leeds festival 2018

Does it really come as a surprise to anyone that HMV is struggling again to bring in the dolla?

I actually called in to a HMV the other day to try and find some car CDs (yeah, I’m a technophobe like that and still use a CD player in my car).

I didn’t think my CD hitlist was that obscure before I went in. But a quick browse at a CD section in there and I was done. They had nothing I wanted. Just some absolutely awful chart CDs, which all seemed to be crappy compilation albums.

So really, it’s no wondering people don’t have the patience to nip in and buy things any more. Especially when Spotify and YouTube exist and people can get instant access.

I actually don’t know if the CDs I wanted were anywhere else in the store, as the layout was annoying and I don’t have the patience.

Anyway….

It really goes to show how times have changed within the music buying and selling industry doesn’t it?

In retrospect, I should have just nipped to the local independent music store. Who may have had what I wanted, with them being older albums. But still, it meant a bit more effort and a walk across town.

Alongside seeing the HMV news, experiencing the awful shopping experience in there, and receiving a press release about record labels and their recorded sales, it got me thinking about the stats from these record sales (as you can see below)…


Taken from online label manufacturer www.data-label.co.uk who have looked at the biggest record label companies and the highest recorded sales by their top selling artists.

Top 10 most successful bands by record sales

  1. The Beatles – 178 million sold.
  2. Garth Brooks – 148 million sold.
  3. Elvis Presley – 136 million sold.
  4. Led Zeppelin – 111.5 million sold.
  5. Eagles – 101 million sold.
  6. Billy Joel – 82.5 million sold.
  7. Michael Jackson – 81 million sold.
  8. Elton John – 78 million sold.
  9. Pink Floyd – 75 million sold.
  10. AC/DC – 72 million sold.

Would these sales still be the same and would these bands be ranking in this top 10, if they were released now?

I mean, if you look at Spotify’s 2018 Wrapped stats, it indicates a pretty different story.

And that’s without Ed Sheeran, who is was most streamed artist of 2017 globally, and remains the most-streamed artist on Spotify with 45 million monthly listeners.

If the likes of Elvis and Elton John released music today, would it come close and how would the stats change?

Times have changed and so has the way people shop for, stream and listen to music. Artists make money in other ways, such as live shows, merchandise and even being influencers nowadays – and value cannot be placed on record sales alone.

Should music fans be doing more to support the revenue streams of their favourite artists?

Probably.

But until buying music becomes a better experience, I’m not sure I will be one of them!

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