Washington, DC (September 26, 2022)—Recorded music revenues in the US grew 9%, with streaming revenues rising 10%, while vinyl continued its upward trajectory with an impressive 22% increase in sales, according to the RIAA’s report on the first half of 2022.
“Today, we are pleased to release strong U.S. recorded music revenue figures of $7.7 billion for the first half of 2022,” wrote Mitch Glazier, chairman and CEO, RIAA, in a blog on Medium accompanying the new revenue figures.
While streaming revenues from paid subscriptions, ad-supported services and other formats grew to $6.5 billion, the overall share of revenues from streaming remains virtually flat at 84%, the report reveals. That said, the number of paid subscriptions topped 90 million for the first time, Glazier also reports; that’s up 10% from 82 million in the first half of 2021.
Paid subscriptions continue to be the largest driver of music revenues, according to the RIAA’s mid-year report, growing 10% to $5.0 billion, and by value accounting for 78% of streaming in the first half of 2022. The so-called limited tier of paid subscriptions — services like Amazon Prime, Pandora Plus, music licenses for digital fitness apps and other subscriptions — increased only slightly over 2021 and accounted for 10% of subscription revenues.
Vinyl sales posted significant growth in 2021 compared to the Covid-ravaged previous year. Revenues continued to rise in the first half of 2022, up 22% to $570 million, with vinyl increasing its market share among physical product from 68% to 73%. Not surprisingly, CD sales dropped 2%, to $200 million, accounting for just over one quarter (26%) of physical product revenues.
Digital download revenues continue to tumble, falling about 20% for both digital tracks and digital albums. Combined with ringtones and other digital download formats, revenues totaled $256 million, or just 3% of total recorded music revenues.
“Songwriters and publishers have seen tremendous growth as U.S. collectives like ASCAP and BMI reported record payments reflecting an increase in the writer/publisher share of music revenues of 50% since the CD era,” Glazier also wrote. “Digital services also have had unprecedented success as earnings at just one major service rose 22% last year pushing it to over 400 million active listeners worldwide. And 2022 is already shaping up as one of the strongest years ever for live music — roaring back after the long struggle against the pandemic.”