This is some crazy news people. US cassette tape sales actually grew in 2016, with 129,000 copies sold. That might not be as many as the number of vinyl albums sold in the same year (which is 13.1 million!), but it’s pretty amazing still.
That is a 74 percent increase from the 74,000 sold in 2015. Weird huh?
There are a few reasons for this growth. It didn’t just happen out of the blue. Specialty cassette albums from Justin Bieber and The Weeknd contributed, each selling close to a thousand copies, while re-issued versions of Eminem’s The Slim Shady LP and Prince and The Revolution’s Purple Rain sold 3,000 and 2,000 units. The Guardians of the Galaxy: Awesome Mix Vol. 1 soundtrack was the most popular, which sold about 4,000 copies each in 2016 and 2015. Fans of the movie wanted to get their hands on the album, considering it looks like an exact replica of the tape that Star-Lord plays. No surprise there.
43 percent were sold online, while the rest were bought at independent retailers, non-traditional music stores and mass merchants etc. Last year’s Cassette Store Day also boosted sales. Apparently a large number of cassettes get sent to prisons as well. It is crazy that the cassette is making a comeback in 2016.
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