In the “isn’t data cool” category, check out this graph which compares 8-track sales to digital album sales.  While the game is far from over, I can’t help but notice that the growth rate for 8-track is better than digital albums.  It’s really no surprise since you can’t beat the convenience of downloading tracks.  But this is more eye-poking evidence to the music business that packaged music is all about singles and that the album is going the way of the Model T.

Here’s the blurb from the article.

The digital album may ultimately win this race, though cumulative 8-track sales are still much larger than digital album sales to-date.  And here’s a scary thought: at current growth rates, the brick-like 8-track could actually be hailed the victor.  Take a look at these shipment totals, based on RIAA figures dating back to 1973 (the format was actually introduced in the mid-60s, though we don’t have reliable figures for that pre-1973 period).

I’ve got no real pearls of wisdom here today, other than the obvious: if you’re in the music business and want to make living, embrace social media to get the word out.  Build an audience organically, and then get on the road to earn some cash.  Live performances are the only way to survive in this new game…


Comments on: "8 tracks beat digital album sales?" (2)

  1. Michael Mejah said:

    Makes you wonder about what the movie guys will do once we all get our fibre optic links to IsoHunt or whatever.

    DRM? Maybe, but everyone knows about the glaring A-hole problem (of which we dare not speak). Live acting, oh I mean theatre, well that’s hardly gonna keep filling the media moguls pockets with cash.

    It’s gotta be something like relentless innovation, 4D movies??? Or they could just give up and disappear as an industry much like the great music behemoths of yesteryear…. interesting times.



  2. […] a follow up to to my bit on 8-tracks versus digital sales, following is a remarkable history of recorded music from 1973-2010 that will make any music […]


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