Music: revival of CDs in the United States, but not in Quebec

Music: CD revival in US, but not in Quebec bec


The meteoric popularity of online listening platforms was about to sign its death warrant, but it seems that the good old compact disc has not yet breathed its last breath.

According to data from the music sales compilation firm Luminate, reported by Billboard magazine, CD sales in the United States are up – very slightly, but up nonetheless – 2.5% in 2023.

In the first ten weeks of the year, 6.9 million compact discs were sold in the country of Taylor Swift compared to 6.8 million copies for the same period of 2022.

Cheaper, more accessible

The reasons for this renewed interest? Its price, in the first place. For music lovers looking for a collectible, CDs are more affordable than vinyl because they cost less to produce.

Billboardcites a Creedence Clearwater Revival compilation as an example, which retails for US$13.99 on CD and US$28.31 on vinyl on Amazon.

“Its smaller format and shorter production times are also advantages over vinyl. Thus, artists who were going on tour opted for the CD at their merchandising kiosk because they were unable to have vinyl delivered on time”, mentions an industry player quoted by Billboard.

No increase here

All this announces that the CD will not die soon, although no one imagines that it will find its glory of twenty years ago.

Besides, Canada and Quebec do not notice no increase like in the United States. The most recent data from the Observatoire de la culture et des communications shows a 19% drop in sales in 2022.

“This is not really the trend in the market in Canada says Musicor's Marketing and Distribution Director, Jerry Kotrokois. Featured Echoes. Around 15,000 copies of an album by Guylaine Tanguay and 12,000 to 13,000 of an album by René Simard were thus sold.

Singer Guylaine Tanguay.

“On the other hand, we do not see these figures on Soundscan (the firm that compiles sales in Canada) because it refuses them. For them, it’s not standard output,” says Kotrokois.