Today [Saturday, April 16] marks the ninth annual Record Store Day, a celebration of independent record stores and all things vinyl. Record store owners have more to celebrate this time around, as vinyl album sales have exploded over the last few years thanks to a resurgence in vinyl enthusiasts.
Despite multiple streaming services becoming the most common way to consume music, vinyl records are just as popular. The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) reported vinyl sales outpaced advertising revenue on tiered streaming services like YouTube and Spotify last year.
According to the RIAA, vinyl sales are up 52 percent from the first half of 2014 to the first half of 2015 — or from $145.8 million to $221.8 million.
Vinyl’s revival, however, can’t compare to the revenues from digital music, which was worth $2.3 billion in the first half of the year, up six percent from the first half of 2014. That doesn’t mean the dusty James Brown records sitting in the basement aren’t worth anything. As the popularity of Record Store Day soars, it’s clear vinyl albums are a hot commodity and in no way ready to head back to the basement.
Many record stores are celebrating the event by hosting artists for in-store performances, most notably Rasputin’s in Berkeley, Calif. Somehow, the store got Metallica to agree to play an acoustic set, which fans are able stream on the group’s Facebook page at 4 p.m. PST, just one component of Metallica’s work on behalf of this year’s event for which they serve as official ambassadors.
Public Enemy‘s Chuck D and Foo Fighters‘ Dave Grohl have served as ambassadors in the past.
To check out all of Record Store Day’s special releases, visit here. The list includes a 12″ of Afrika Bambaataa‘s “Plant Rock” and J Dilla‘s The Diary.