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US recorded music industry grew by 27% in the first half of 2021

Recorded music generated $7.1B at retail value in the first half of the year

  • Tope Olufemi
  • 15 September 2021
US recorded music industry grew by 27% in the first half of 2021

The recorded music industry in the US has grown by 27% in the first half of the year according to the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).

Read this next: MPs call for musicians to earn 50% of their share in royalties with a "complete reset" on music streaming

As per a mid-year report published by the RIAA earlier this week, at retail value, $7.1B was generated by the industry throughout the year so far, growing from $5.1B at the beginning of 2020. The share of these revenues that rights holders claimed also increased by 25% to $4.6B, up from $3.7B in 2020.

Streaming continues to grow and dominate the market, which is responsible for 84% of revenue for recorded music, with paid subscriptions earning $4.6B. While CD vinyl sales continue to grow rapidly, with physical sales of music increasing by 43.9% for CDs and 94% for vinyl.

There was an average of 82 million paid subscriptions in the first half of the year, with this figure not taking into account how many subscribers there are, but instead how many subscriptions were made, so the market of paid subscriptions is potentially larger than this.

Read this next: The majority of Spotify's top streamed artists are making under £36k a year on the platform

The report comes at a time where tensions between streaming services and musicians are at an all time high, with artists feeling that they are not adequately compensated for their work by streaming services.

Tope Olufemi is Mixmag’s Digital Intern, follow them on Twitter

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