Music Industry: RIP (+ Lil Wayne Tops 08)




Aside from that, Mrs.
Lincoln, how did you enjoy the play?


By Fred Mills


Billboard is
that Lil Wayne’s Tha Carter III – one of BLURT’s Top 50 albums of the year, incidentally – was 2008’s
biggest-selling release, selling according to SoundScan 2.88 million copies.
The news comes with a caveat, however: according to the report, “it’s the first
time the best selling album of the year has sold less than 3 million,” tangible
evidence that the music industry isn’t just in decline, it’s in the toilet.


Following Lil Wayne:


Coldplay – Viva La
Vida or Death and All His Friends
, 2.15 million

Taylor Swift – Fearless,
2.1l million

Kid Rock – Rock N [sic]
Roll Jesus, 2 million

AC/DC – Black Ice,
1.92 million

Taylor Swift – Taylor
, 1.6 million

Metallica -Death
, 1.57 million

T.I. – Paper Trail,
1.52 million

Jack Johnson – Sleep
Through the Static
, 1.5 million

Beyonce – I Am… Sasha
, 1.46 million



The report goes on to point that sales are down by about 14.
4%, with 428.4 million albums sold overall in 2008 compared to 500.5 million in
2007. (Cue up another “in the toilet” comment…. But hey, if you sell turds,
what do you expect?) There are a bunch of other eye-blurring statistics in the
report – among them, if you can dig it, a note that sales of vinyl albums were
higher than in any other calendar year since SoundScan began tracking back in
1991 – but none of them are particular enlightening and/or sobering.


To quote a horrible cliché, the music industry is what it
is, and all the hand-wringing is a day late and a dollar short (to quote
another horrible cliché). No one has bothered to point out that the whole
goddam economy is also in the toilet and people are losing their jobs and their
houses, so when you hear another record label exec bemoan the current state of
recorded music sales, think about how much he and his posse netted from those
nearly-three-million sales for Lil Wayne compared to what you and your neighbor
took home in 2008. I lost my job last year too, a decent paying one at that,
largely due to downturns in the music industry, but I didn’t sit around holding
my dick and moaning. I stood up, went out, and did something about it.




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