VINYL REVIVAL

Did anyone buy anything on "Record Store Day"?

There was only one Everly Brothers vinyl at my favourite shop and I have it, but I got a fantastic album of Dion's (and the Belmonts) titled the same as the artist. It is 'Rare and previously unissued' the condition is nearly mint cover and mint vinyl. Very Happy.

The album is full of either unissued or #alternate takes.

There was an excellent "Hollies" album there, I may go back for that one. Smile
Last update on July 2, 6:03 am by Chris.
David Bowie helps vinyl sales hit 25-YEAR high as CDs and downloads plummet


AS STREAMING continues to kill off the sales of CDs and digital downloads, it seems vinyls are still enjoying a healthy resurgence in popularity.

David Bowie was part of the vinyl resurgence in 2016, after he passed away in January



Thanks in part to Record Store Day and the nostalgia effect, sales of the classic format hit a 25-year high in 2016, according to the BPI.

With 3.2 million records sold, the total was a huge 53% up on 2015, with David Bowie’s "Blackstar" the most-purchased.

The death of Bowie triggered a huge upsurge in purchases, while Amy Winehouse’s Back To Black - released in 2006 - was the second most-bought, ahead of Guardians Of The Galaxy Mix 1.

Radiohead’s A Moon Shaped Pool came in fourth, with Fleetwood Mac’s classic Rumours at No5 and The Stone Roses’ eponymous collection at No6.


The icon's discography sold extremely well, including his new album Blackstar




Amy Winehouse's Back To Black also sold strongly




Further down the Top 10, Bob Marley’s Legend ended the year at No7, The Beatles’ Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band was No8, Prince’s Purple Rain No9 and Nirvana’s Nevermind No10.

Despite its rising numbers, however, it’s important to note that vinyls still only account for 2.6% of all music sales.

In contrast, 47.3 million CDs were purchased in 2016, a fall of 11.7% on 2015, while downloads plummeted by 29.6% with just 18.1 million albums bought.

In contrast, 32.6 million were bought online when the download market was at its peak four years ago.

It is now widely believed that streaming services such as Spotify and Apple Music are steadily eating into actual sales, giving the music industry a crisis in terms of revenue.


Drake had the year's top single




Last update on September 3, 6:57 am by Chris.
When Bowie decided to bring his new album out on vinyl see above #32 it made a big impact on vinyl sales. The difference between 2015 and 2016 is phenomenal. Oasis together and as solo artists Liam and Noel Gallagher have both brought out albums on vinyl. Liam Gallagher is bringing his new album out shortly and it will be interesting to see which he chooses, cd or vinyl or both. Many artists are going back to vinyl because of the feel of it in your hand and the excitement of putting it onto a turntable and placing the needle on the album.


From #32 - With 3.2 million records sold, the total was a huge 53% up on 2015, with David Bowie’s "Blackstar" the most-purchased.

Many of us on site have many vinyls by the Everly Brothers and solo albums by Phil and Don and we still continue to buy them. Colin has spoken of this many times on site.
Last update on June 29, 4:14 pm by Chris.
Records come round again: Sony to open vinyl factory in Japan

Major label’s Japanese arm to build new vinyl-pressing plant to keep up with growing demand for reissues and new releases on retro format.


A Tokyo record store manager shows off a period Japanese pressing of The Beatles’ final studio album Let It Be. Photograph: Toshifumi Kitamura/AFP/Getty Images

It has been dismissed as the niche domain of hipsters who don’t even have turntables and nostalgic dads buying countless reissues of Dark Side Of the Moon. But the resurrection of vinyl has been given major label backing, with the announcement by Sony Music that it will restart the manufacture of its own records.

The Japanese arm of Sony Music announced it would open its own record-pressing plant in March next year to cope with the huge demand for vinyl in the country.

Sony Music Japan shut down its in-house vinyl pressing production in 1989 after the advent of CDs, which entered the market in 1982 and were dominantfor the next two decades.

However, in a trend mirrored worldwide, vinyl sales in Japan have rocketed over the past four years and the country’s sole vinyl-pressing factory is unable to cope with demand, prompting Sony to step in.

It is a similar story in Europe, where most vinyl for major and independent labels is pressed by just two plants, GZ media based in the Czech Republic, and Record Industry in the Netherlands. However, their combined capacity of more than 100,000 records per day is not enough to keep up with global appetite.

“It’s actually too good,” said Record Industry’s owner, Ton Vermeulen, last year. “Demand is sky-high and we’re having to turn people away, which I don’t like doing.”

The boom in vinyl sales is attributed to two factors: older generations who have long been attached to the format, and also a younger audience used to digital forms of music who want to own a physical format; with CDs in decline, vinyl has become a popular alternative.

“A lot of young people buy songs that they hear and love on streaming services,” said Michinori Mizuno, chief executive of Sony Music Japan.




Factory worker Aga Dolega-Lawry places a master record into a pressing machine to make copies of Definitely Maybe by Oasis at The Vinyl Factory in Hayes, UK. Photograph: Chris J Ratcliffe/Getty Images

The decision by Sony to invest in its own vinyl-pressing plant is currently limited to Japan. The records released will primarily be older Japanese reissues, and some new albums, and the records will mainly be sold in that country.



Nonetheless, the decision has wider implications for the global music industry, which has experienced a surprisingly fast reversal of fortunes this year thanks to the phenomenon of streaming and the worldwide clamour for vinyl.

The surge in demand for vinyl in the UK and Europe, propelled by events such as Record Store Day, has put enormous pressure on few remaining pressing plants. If sales continue to climb – 3.2m vinyl records were sold in the UK in 2016, up 53% on the year before – Sony may not be the only label wanting its own manufacturing plants, as was common practice in the 1970s and 1980s.

Mark Mulligan, a music industry analyst, is not surprised by Sony’s move. “There’s no doubt vinyl is a market that will keep growing – even now globally there’s not enough capacity for making vinyl to meet the demand,” he said. “As a result the pressing plants can charge the labels a really high premium. So there may well be a profit incentive for more labels to reopen their own plants.”

However, Mulligan said the move would “require a lot of investment, not just in materials but also in expertise, training people up”.

“At the moment, consumers are willing to pay a high premium for vinyl – people will happily pay £40 for a limited edition record – and so labels are still making a wide profit margin. But if demand continues to rise, I can see labels wanting to take control of their own destiny when it comes to producing vinyl, so this may be repeated by others in the future. It’s all tied in to supply and demand.”

Fittingly, Record Industry is based in an old Sony Records vinyl plant bought in 1998 by Vermeulen, a Dutch former DJ, to press dance records. After a tricky patch seven years ago, the plant is on course to press 11m records this year – more than double the amount pressed in 2014. About 60% were reissues of old music but new records pressed in the factory included recordings by Jamiroquai, Lady Gaga and Beth Ditto.

Sales manager Anouk Rijnders said she was not worried by Sony’s move to press its own vinyl as it was primarily for the Asian market.

“For us it’s not a concern ... I don’t expect huge levels of production from them for at least the first few years,” she said. “We produce 40,000 to 50,000 records a day, but making vinyl is a very delicate process you need the people and the knowledge to do it, so I think they might struggle with that.

“I do think we are expecting to see vinyl sales rise for another two or years. It is not a passing fad, I think the return of vinyl is something that will continue for years to come.”
Last update on September 3, 7:01 am by Chris.
The Sony announcement this week was international news and it was widely reported in news items and all over the web. This is a giant step forward where vinyl is involved.

Many, many members on site collect vinyl. There was one extremely interesting point and photo in #34 of the lady at the pressing machine.

"Factory worker Aga Dolega-Lawry places a master record into a pressing machine to make copies of Definitely Maybe by Oasis at The Vinyl Factory in Hayes, UK. Photograph: Chris J Ratcliffe/Getty Images"

This album by Oasis was first out in 1994, so for Sony to do this is great news. Streaming etc is destroying the market sales of albums. Information in #34

Last update on July 2, 3:55 pm by Chris.
When I am playing music in my house it is on vinyl. I have been a Beatle collector for over 50 years now, and I have pretty much every record they ever released, albums and 45s...this goes for the solo records they did as well. I have almost all the Everly albums, and their solo albums, and a handful of 45s that I pick up if they are in good shape. I do have CDs for most of it too, those are in my car. But you can't beat vinyl for sound, and just the fun of holding that cover in your hands while you play the record. Both of my kids have turntables and play lots of records, even with the technology available to them they seem to still like "moms" music on vinyl.
Sharon K
Sony Music goes back to vinyl records


Sony Music, one of the big three global record companies, says it will start pressing its own vinyl releases again for the first time since 1989.

The firm will resume in-house domestic vinyl production at a Japanese factory south-west of Tokyo by March 2018.

The move comes amid renewed demand for old-fashioned black plastic records, which now occupy a key market niche.

At one time, the format had been expected to disappear after the rise of CDs, digital downloads and streaming.

During vinyl's long decline from the late 1980s onwards, many vinyl record factories closed down, with production confined to a few specialist independent firms.

But this year, global vinyl revenue is expected to hit $1bn (£770m), with many consumers swearing by its supposedly superior sound quality.

Analysis: Jonty Bloom, business correspondent: -
They said the CD had killed it and that digital downloads had left it dead and buried: but vinyl is back. Sony, which played a major part in killing off vinyl by developing CDs, has seen them replaced in turn by other music technology such as downloads and streaming, but vinyl is increasingly popular once again.

The format has been saved by a resurgence in demand, as it attracts not only nostalgic older consumers, but also younger generations who have rediscovered records, especially in clubs and at music festivals.

Sony is even struggling to find older engineers who know how to make records. Part of the reason for the popularity of vinyl records may be that you can actually sell them in shops. In the UK, record sales brought in more money last year than streaming platforms - although the unit costs of vinyl is many times that of streaming.



Blank generation

This is how all vinyl records start. Whether the finished product is a seven-inch single or a 12-inch LP, the music has to be engraved onto a 14-inch blank disc (or "lacquer") by a cutting lathe. The process is a specialised one, to be undertaken only by a qualified mastering engineer. Abbey Road is best known as a recording studio, but it also offers one of the UK's few remaining vinyl mastering services.




Historic singles

The 45 rpm single has reached its 60th anniversary and despite repeated predictions of its demise, sales are rising once again. The first seven-inch was released by RCA in the US on 31 March 1949. But EMI's Abbey Road studios in London, where many iconic UK singles were recorded and mastered, can trace its history back even further, to 1931. Many of EMI's classic hits, by the Beatles and others, line the walls of the studio corridors.



Start to finish

The vinyl granules are heated and turned into a "puck", which is placed between two labels and squashed flat between the two stampers in a huge machine. Pressure of more than 2,000 lb per square inch is needed to turn the puck on the left into the record on the right. The vinyl can be any colour you like: black granules are used for conventional records, while coloured vinyl is produced by using transparent granules mixed with particles of dye.




Keeping in trim

The record that first emerges from the mould is not perfectly round and needs to be cut down to size. As it moves along the production line, it is trimmed of extraneous vinyl by an automatic cutter. The manufacturing process takes place behind a clear plastic protective screen, but the off-cuts can be picked up and are still warm to the touch. They fall down a chute into a receptacle and are saved for recycling.

Vinyl records have been growing in popularity again in recent years, boosted by events such as Record Store Day in April every year, for which record companies produce special limited-edition singles and albums.

Sony's move comes a few months after it equipped its Tokyo studio with a cutting lathe, used to produce the master discs needed for manufacturing vinyl records.
It has not yet said which titles it will be pressing in vinyl, but big sellers in the format these days are a mixture of classic back-catalogue items and modern releases by new bands.



A shop manager shows off a period Japanese pressing of the Beatles’ final studio album, Let It Be, at the RECOfan shop in Tokyo. Photograph: Toshifumi Kitamura/AFP/Getty

Three decades after it abandoned vinyl production, Sony will start making records again amid surging demand.

A factory south-west of Tokyo will churn out freshly pressed records from March, Sony Music Entertainment said on Thursday.

The Japanese company stopped making vinyl records in 1989 as consumers flocked to CDs and other emerging technology. Japan produced nearly 200m records a year in the mid-seventies, according to the country’s recording industry association.

Sony was a large global player in the development of CDs, which have since taken a back seat to downloads and music streaming.

Vinyl has been making a global comeback as it attracts not only nostalgic older consumers but also younger generations.

Japan’s sole record maker, Toyokasei, was struggling to keep up with the resurgence in vinyl demand, the Nikkei newspaper reported. Sony was scrambling to find older engineers familiar with how to make records, it added.

Panasonic relaunched its popular Technics SL-1200 turntable several years ago as the vinyl market gathered pace.

Sony did not say what music it would release in record format. The Nikkei said the lineup would include popular Japanese songs from the past, including Sony-owned titles, as well as chart-topping contemporary albums.

Global vinyl revenue will top $1bn this year while sales of CDs and digital downloads continue to fall, according to estimates from Deloitte consulting firm.

In Britain, where vinyl’s rebirth has been particularly pronounced, records generated more revenue than advertising-backed tiers of streaming platforms last year.

Elton John is among the curators for a new vinyl subscription service based around the favourite records of the stars. Experience Vinyl, a US-based service, is to launch in April, with Elton John as its first curator, followed by the likes of Quincy Jones, Talib Kweli, George Clinton and Sean Lennon.

For a fee of around $30 a month, subscribers will receive one of the curator’s favourite albums by another artist, along with personal commentary, the artist’s Top 10 albums list, access to the service’s store and other rewards. A proportion of the revenues will go to a charity of the curator’s choice.

Billboard reports that the idea for the service came from founder Brad Hammonds’ blog Desert Island Albums, in which musicians were asked to name what they would listen to if only allowed 10 albums for the rest of their life.

“Growing up a vinyl fanatic, I’ve had the desire to create a record club for the better part of my adult life,” Hammonds told Billboard. “Experience Vinyl is a different kind of subscription service and a dream for any vinyl lover. It’s a record club where artists handpick not only the records they love, but the ones they couldn’t live without. Who better to send you great music each month than artists themselves? It’s an honour to work with some of the greatest musicians of all time, and we’re excited to share their personal and meaningful picks with all of you.”

Vinyl subscription services have become increasingly common in recent years, with a wide choice available, often with their own particular gimmick – such as the one that offers craft beer with every record, or the one that sends a bottle of wine with each album.
Subscription services position vinyl unashamedly as part of the luxury goods market, a reflection of the fact that a brand new vinyl album will usually cost around £20. And while vinyl has been a growth sector for the music industry – sales last year reached a 25-year high, with more than 3.2m sales – it remains very much a niche market.

Nevertheless, its revival from its 2007 low point – when just 200,000 new vinyl albums were sold – had provided an opportunity for record labels. One small label owner – releasing records aimed at an older, wealthier audience – recently told the Guardian that vinyl was a significant revenue generator because the margins were so great, given the high retail prices.
Others, though, see less benefit. Nathaniel Cramp of the Sonic Cathedral label wrote in the Guardian recently that it has become harder and harder for independent labels to sell music.
“This year has been the most difficult in the 12 years that I’ve been running my label, Sonic Cathedral. If you are releasing records by new artists, it is getting harder and harder to sell them,” he wrote. “It’s not just me: Fortuna Pop! has sadly decided to call it a day after 20 years; another person who runs a well-respected indie tells me its records sell in smaller and smaller numbers. I’ve never sold many copies, but when one of the major indies is shifting roughly the same amount – seemingly regardless of press and radio coverage or touring – then surely that’s cause for concern, not celebration?”

Old style deck/turntable



The Panasonic Technics SL-1200 turntable mentioned above.

Last update on September 4, 6:55 pm by Chris.
Superb information, Chris! Jimmy Fallon of NBC's The Tonight Show usually features a newly released album by various artists. Most of the albums have been vinyls. One recording star (cannot remember who) had a discussion with Fallon about the superior sound quality of vinyl recordings (that part I do remember).

Before and after I was born, my dad and his two brothers would sing and play their guitars whenever they got together and at parties. The fascinating thing to me in distant memory was they "made records"! There was a blank vinyl (as shown in #37), and it was put on a turntable. As they sang, the vibrations from their voices and instruments (oh yes, there were maracas, too) on the arm of the record player via the needle would cut grooves in the vinyl! I don't know where these records are now. My mom says they are "somewhere" in her house. They sounded quite good as they imitated the songs of Trio Los Panchos, a very famous group whose music is still covered. One such song is "Besame Mucho" (Kiss Me ... A Lot)
Last update on September 5, 12:25 pm by Gloria Solis.
Vinyl is coming back here Gloria but most of the stuff in the stores are remastered. I have seen Roots from The Everlys but it was in Porto and about 50 pounds
I collect any good vinyl from carboots auctions and charity shops but even those have sort of dried up. I do not mind what they are but they must be scratch free. I have not got that sort of ear, but those who play them regularly now say that the sound quality is better than the CD which can fade. I have not noticed it to be honest
You must recall those old record players where you could stack 10 45s on top of one another and just sit there unless something went wrong and two fell and there was that awful noise! Still got one of those players somewhere but they are not valuable any more
My grand daughter and her friends have no idea what I am talking about and I introduced them to a cassette recently. They were gobsmacked
I still have one of those record players Colin where you could stack 10 45's, it is in the loft because the arm needs attention. We recently found a place in Preston who can repair them and we have friends near there so a visit is on the cards now and get the record player repaired.

The one my parents had was a state of the art one, a Ferguson with a roll back top and fantastic sound, my brother has that one and none of us have any intention of parting with them. My parents one will be passed on to grandchildren.

We have so many 45's due to my husband's DJ days, albums too. Maybe 600 cd's. Goodness knows who will want all these!! The Everly Brothers albums and cd's are kept totally separate from all the others so that I can find them quickly when I want to play one. Smile
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