HITS Daily Double
"Music continues to appeal broadly to people of all ages and demographics."
——Hilary Rosen, RIAA Chairman/CEO


Problem is, There Weren’t Enough of ‘Em, As Sales Dip for Third Year in a Row to $12.6 Billion, with Rock Leading Genre
There are still an awful lot of rock fans out there, but the hip-hop/rap contingent is rapidly gaining on them.

Those are among the findings of this year’s RIAA 2002 Consumer Profile, which marked a third consecutive year of sales drops, to $12.6 billion from 2002’s $13.7 billion. Both totals are down from the all-time high of $14.5 billion set back in the heady pre-file-sharing days of ’99.

At any rate, the annual research project is designed to "contribute important demographic information about purchasers of sound recordings in the U.S. and consumer buying patterns over the past decade."

"Music continues to appeal broadly to people of all ages and demographics," insisted outgoing RIAA Chairman/CEO Hilary Rosen, who leaves her post at the end of June. "There is a tremendous diversity of music available to fill those needs and recent developments online make the choices for all music fans even more exciting. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’M OUTTA HERE!"

Rock music fans continue to represent the largest slice of the buyers' pie, accounting for nearly 25% of the market, up a few tenths of a percentage point from last year. Hip-hop is hot on its trail, though, now at 13.8% of the total pie, up 2.4% from last year and at its highest point since 1993.

R&B/Urban follows at 11.2%, up from 10.6%, while Country was at 10.7%, up .2% from last year.

Other genres include Pop (down 12.1%-9% with the demise of teen idols), Religious (steady at 6.7%) Jazz (down slightly at 3.2%) and Classical (also down slightly at 3.1%).

Full-length CDs account for a whopping 90.5% of all sales, with full-length cassettes trailing at a paltry 2.4%. Digital downloads represent .5% of the market, up 150% from 2001.

Not surprisingly, the largest segment of CD buyers are still baby boomers aged 45 or above, at 25.5%, up from last year’s 23.7%, and answering the question as to who’s purchasing all those Cher albums. Guess some old habits die hard. The next leading age group is the 15-19-year-olds at 13.3%, trailed by the 20-24-year-olds at 11.5% and 30-34-year-olds at 10.8%.

In what is clearly a sign of the continuing decline of the traditional, music-based record store, it attracted 36.8% of buyers, and for the first time in the last decade, was surpassed by the "other store" category, at 50.7%. Back in ’93, 56.2% of buyers made their purchase at a traditional record store, while half that many, 26.1%, did at an "other store." The tape/record club total was also down to its lowest rate ever, 4%, down from a high of 15.1% in '94. Internet buyers accounted for 3.4% of the whole, up .5 from the year before and an all-time high since this category was introduced in 1997, when the figure was .3%.

In other news, 98.9% of those polled didn’t know who Hilary Rosen was.