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Record collectors in the UK are getting younger!



 

  • Two thirds of the UK's indie record stores see rise in Under 25s and Women buying vinyl  

  • Lockdown sees year to date vinyl sales grow by more than 46% - the fastest growth rate in 5 years 

  • This comes ahead of the first Record Store Day Drop set to take place this Saturday 12 June 


It's no longer 33s, 45s or 78s, in fact it's the Under 25s who are getting into the vinyl groove as the UK's independent record stores report a rise in young people collecting records.

Ahead of the biggest event in the record collecting calendar this weekend, more than 140 participating Record Store Day stores took part in a survey about their customers – and two thirds of them reported that they had seen a considerable rise in the number of younger people getting into vinyl. 

Jack LeFeuvre, who opened Le Freak Records in Dundee when he was 23 said "We see lots of young people buying vinyl in our store and I think it's slowly becoming a norm in terms of how people want to listen to music nowadays. Nearly every artist will release a special vinyl edition as part of their album campaign and that is something that many music fans don't want to miss out on. I think people got fed up and frustrated with everything becoming 'digital' and if you love an artist there's nothing more exciting than being able to hold the artwork, read the liner notes and enjoy the experience of listening to an album from start to finish. When we first opened we were always asked if it was a fad but it's popularity has only continued to rise and proved the naysayers wrong".

And the age of vinyl buyers is not the only thing changing, as more than 60% of record store owners also reported growing numbers of women coming into their stores and enjoying the vinyl experience.

Ashlie Green from David's Music in Letchworth, said "Record shops have had a history of being fairly male dominated spaces – but the Hi Fidelity-esque days are definitely over as more and more women are enjoying vinyl. Not only are there more women behind the counter but the spaces themselves are much more welcoming to all people of all ages. Record Store Day is a great driver for that too is that list of releases is so eclectic and brings in music lovers from every background for what is normally a big party!".

 

The vinyl revival in 2021

Record Store Day is the annual event that celebrates the unique culture of independent record stores and the art of vinyl. Now in its 14th year, it is often described as the catalyst behind the vinyl revival.

When Record Store Day first began in 2007, only 75,000 vinyl albums were sold in the UK, but jump ahead to 2020, that number has rocketed to over 5m units and over £110 million in value. 

Vinyl continues to enjoy it 13th consecutive year of growth in the UK with sales in January to May of this year alone topping more than 1.8m vinyl albums and surpassing a spend of over £40m – that's up over 46% compared with 2020. This surge is most likely being driven by a nation being locked inside and having more time than ever before to reconnect with the art and music they love.

The trend is looking likely to continue too – as more and more people are investing in turntables and more advanced audio equipment at home. 

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