The Liner Notes

All the music that matters

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Digital music dominates 2008

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So it is officially 2009 and we are still downloading music to our hard drives rather than directly into our brains like some sort of futuristic sci-fi novel.

While someday we may be able to upload music directly to our cerebellums, it looks as if for the foreseeable future that MP3s will reign supreme.

According to Nielsen Co. Americans bought more music in 2008 than ever before, but album, sales witnessed a steady decline.

Music sales, including CD, cassette, vinyl and digital downloads, increased more than 10 percent over 2007. According to the year-end report, digital music accounted for more than 70 percent of that increase.

As the digital musical media experienced record growth, traditional albums fell by 428.4 million compared to 2007. Rob Sisco, Nielsen’s president of music, was quoted in USA Today saying that music purchases are “astronomically high but it’s a marketplace in transition from physical to digital.”

The trend is sure to continue, and the gap in digital versus album sales will grow in 2009. As a consumer it is far easier to click a button, pay $9.99 and have an album on your hard drive as opposed to driving to a store and paying upwards of $14 for a physical copy.

While digital downloading is easy and convenient, there are certain aspects that the next generation is sure to miss out on. The traditional Tuesday trip to the local record shop to check out the new releases and flip through the rows of albums is going by the wayside.

This site’s namesake, Liner Notes, once an art unto itself, is being reduced to PDF files that include little more than a couple photos and a MySpace web address. The musty smell of an old record shop packed to the gills with odds and ends can never be replaced by megabytes and iTunes libraries.

Yes, technology will propel us forward to the point when we plug our headphones into our forehead, but in the meantime make sure to make time for the corner record shop this New Year. If nothing else feeling vinyl between fingertips does the soul good

Top 10 downloaded songs for 2008:

1) Low by Flo Rida Featuring T-Pain

2) Bleeding by Love Leona Lewis

3) Lollipop by Lil Wayne Featuring Static Major

4) I Kissed a Girl by Katy Perry

5) Viva La Vida by Coldplay

6) Love Song by Sara Bareilles

7) Apologize by Timbaland Featuring OneRepublic

8) No Air by Jordin Sparks Duet With Chris Brown

9) Disturbia by Rihanna

10) 4 Minutes by Madonna Featuring Justin Timberlake

Source: Billboard Hot Digital Songs / The Nielsen Company

 

 

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Written by David Young

January 3, 2009 at 4:29 pm