Older acts No. 1 with aging buyers as CD sales wane

Labels used to be obsessed about youth, but “old people” are the ones still buying CD, reports Boston Globe:

Partly this is due to lower overall album sales. The recent reissue of the Rolling Stones’ 1972 album “Exile on Main Street’’ debuted at number two on the strength of only 76,000 copies sold, according to Nielsen Soundscan. Sales in that range have been equally winning for other “heritage acts’’ like Carole King and James Taylor, and Melissa Etheridge. (This has also been a boon to indie acts, which can debut high on the chart with totals in the 40,000 range.)

These figures are a far cry from the highs of the early 2000s. In a week in March 2000, boy band ’N Sync sold 2.4 million copies of its album “No Strings Attached,’’ setting the US record for sales in one week. Britney Spears and Eminem each sold more than 1 million copies of an album in its first week.

To even make the Top 10 back then, an album typically had to sell in the six figures. Sales in the 70,000 to 80,000 range would rate only the bottom half of the top 20. Today that can be good enough for number one. The third volume of music from the TV show “Glee’’ hit number one two weeks ago with only 63,000 copies sold.

via Older acts No. 1 with aging buyers as CD sales wane – The Boston Globe (via Allmusic)

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