The first half of 2004 has been a good one for the US music industry, despite tales of woe from the RIAA. CD album sales are up 6.9% on the first half of 2003, according to figures from Neilsen Soundscan, the system for collection point-of-sale information from retailers in the US and Canada.
The January to June 2004 saw 305.7 million units sold, up from 285.9 million in the same period in 2003.
Universal is listed as the top distributor with 27.1% of the market, independent labels collectively take the second place with 17.5% and BMG are third at 16.4%. BMG’s market share was helped along by Usher’s “Confessions”, which was the top selling album in the first half of this year.
Even with the crowded online music store market, CD album sales are continuing to show promising growth, demonstrating that most consumers still have a healthy appetite for physical distribution mediums and have no wish to pirate music.