Billboard has a bunch of details from Nielsen SoundScan’s presentation at the NARM conference, which had some worrying stats for the music industry. Just 12 albums released in 2009 sold more than one million units last year in the US, down from 22 in 2009, 27 in 2008 and 35 in 2006. What’s more, only 771 of the 97,751 albums released in the US last year sold more than 5,000 units. Nielsen also says that the ‘second-week fade’ for albums – their drop-off in sales – is increasing: it was 62.8% in 2009, compared to 33.9% back in 2000. It suggests that piracy is one reason, but also the fact that digital pre-sales are more common nowadays, resulting in bigger first-week spikes. Source: Billboard

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