ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Despite the digital age, vinyl records are proving they can stand the test of time. And at the start of a new decade, they are more popular than ever.
From Queen’s greatest hits to Lady Gaga’s first album, “the concept album is making a comeback,” says Chris Losack, Astro-Zombies store manager.
For the first time in three decades, vinyl records are on track to outsell CDs, generating more than $224 million in revenue in 2019. “People started asking for more records, then people started asking for more records, and then eventually, we sell a ton of records now,” Losack says.
Astro-Zombies store manager Chris Losack says his old Nob Hill music store shut down as streaming music gained momentum. “When the records stopped being popular, there was no way to keep open a whole other store,” Losack says.
Over the last decade, he’s created a whole section for records in the comic book store as a younger generation rediscovers the timeless quality of vinyl. “The warm sound the record gives you, it’s different from an electronic signal and it really changed the game,” Losack says.
According to Billboard, last week was the biggest for vinyl sales in 2019. “A lot of people who collect anything want a physical copy of something,” record collector Gabs Leyba says.
A mix of new and old artists make up the top five sellers: Harry Styles’ “Fine Line”, Billie Eilish’s “When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?”, The Beatles’ “Abbey Road”, Queen’s “Greatest Hits”, and “Guardians of the Galaxy: Awesome Mix Volume 1.”
For now, it seems vinyl has solidified its place in yet another decade. “I think it comes down to the nostalgia factor of it,” Leyba says.
Correction: In a previous version of this story KRQE reported that vinyl records outsold CDs for the first time in three decades. However, that is incorrect. Vinyl is on track to outsell CDs but an official report from RIAA has yet to be released.