Animated chart of the rise and fall of music formats


¡Que siga la fiesta!
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The chart is fascinating to follow...

Streaming of course is the top music consumption format today. Which is disturbing for the state of the artists, since they receive a pittance for plays on streaming, as opposed to direct sales of their music through other formats (which today are downloads and vinyl, which is why I purchase recordings that I like and/or where I want to help support the artist).

Although the chart isn't adjusted for inflation (which IMHO skews the data substantially--a dollar in 1973 was worth $6.10 in 2021, the final year in the chart), it is still interesting to see the rise and fall of formats over the years.

Long live the 8-Track? 🤣
8-tracks actually held on for a long time due to the trucking industry. Many of the older 18-wheelers still had 8-track players, and for a while the tapes were available in truck stops.
I could really felt the "farting" of the AMPEX stereo 8 track tape sound back then!! (laughs) Saw a collection of AMPEX 8 tracks when I was at the Service Plaza Howard Johnson's at the Ohio Turnpike in April of 1975!!
The other thing that kept 8-tracks going for a while was record clubs. They had a lot of those "buy 20 titles over the next three years" agreements to fulfill, I guess.

I wish I could remember the earliest titles of cassettes we carried. The oldest one I myself can remember owning is Herb Alpert's BEYOND, but I have no idea if we carried other Herb titles before that one. I didn't buy too many cassette titles for myself -- I'd record LPs onto cassette for car listening. I probably never owned more than maybe 10 titles on cassette, if that.
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