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Streaming hits new milestone, accounts for nearly 80 percent of US music revenue in 2019

Oddly enough, revenue from vinyl was up a whopping 19% in 2019, too.

Streaming hits new milestone, accounts for nearly 80 percent of US music revenue in 2019
[Photo: Daniel Schludi/Unsplash]

The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) has released a report examining music sales trends for the full 2019 calendar year. The report, as noted by Variety, shows that U.S. revenues of recorded music grew by 13% to $11.1 billion last year. The driver of that growth? Streaming music services.

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The RIAA says total revenues from streaming grew 20% to $8.8 billion in 2019. That figure includes both paid streaming service revenues and ad-supported “free” streaming service plans. If you separate out just the paid streaming service revenue, that increased 25% to $6.8 billion in 2019. Overall, revenue from all forms of streaming accounted for a whopping 80% of recorded music revenue in 2019.

But the news is much bleaker for physical and digital download music sales. As Variety notes, sales of physical recorded music, such as CDs, now just account for 10% of revenue. Digital downloads, such as the songs you can buy from the iTunes Music Store, fared even worse, accounting for only 8% of recorded music revenue.

Perhaps the biggest surprise of all from the RIAA’s report: revenue from vinyl was actually up a whopping 19% in 2019, which saw records bring in $504 million in revenue in the U.S. alone.

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