Tapping into a growing trend where old is new again, Walmart will host its first online Vinyl Mania Week beginning Monday, May 10 with exclusive and limited editions of vinyl records for music fans of all genres.
The five-day event on Walmart.com/vinyl-records, will include color vinyl discs from artists such as Machine Gun Kelly, Johnny Cash, Halsey, Post Malone, Keith Urban, KISS, Frank Sinatra and John Denver.
More than 150 titles — ranging from pop, soul and rock to country, folk and jazz — will be available, with new selections popping up each day.
Prices vary. A vinyl version of Journey’e greatest hits, for example, sells for $32.23, while AC/DC’s “Back in Black” album is listed at $18.97.
“As vinyl continues to make a big comeback and become the preferred music format, Walmart is committed to offering customers the albums they want at everyday low prices,” the company said in a statement.
Vinyl record sales have grown steadily for the past 15 years. In 2020, 27.5 million LPs (albums) were sold in the U.S., a 46% increase from 2019, and a more than 30-fold increase from 2006 when the vinyl comeback began, Statistica reported.
To get a sense of how big the trend really is, MRC Data’s 2020 Year-End Report notes that LPs accounted for 27% of album sales (both physical and digital) in the U.S. When streaming and downloads of single tracks are factored in, that drops to 3.6% of album-equivalent music consumption.
Fingerprints Music in Long Beach specializes in new and used vinyl albums. Manager Chris Baker said it’s about more than the music.
“There are a few aspects to vinyl records,” he said. “One is just the ritual — putting the record on the turntable and putting the needle down and hearing that crackle. But it’s also the artwork and how the albums sound … how they’re pressed.”
Audiophiles widely acknowledge that vinyl records have a fuller sound than CDs, which are heavily compressed and tend to have a thinner, more brittle sound. But that advantage falls by the wayside if an album is played on a cheap turntable, Baker said.
“Younger kids tend to buy cheaper quality turntables, so they’re really not getting the sound they want,” he said.
Fingerprints’ website highlights LPs by such artists as Billie Eilish, The Shins, The Mountain Goats and Rival Sons.
Source: Orange County Register