A Manchester record store claims the UK’s first ever weekly Official Vinyl Charts will have little bearing on their business, despite being pleasantly surprised by its launch this week.
The Official Charts Company announced the new charts this week – with American pop-rock band All Time Low’s new album ‘Future Hearts’ topping the inaugural ranking – after years of steady growth of record sales nationwide.
But Andy McQueen, a 49-year-old shop assistant at Piccadilly Records on Oldham Street, maintains the store and similarly successful shops will operate as they always have done.
SPIN ME RIGHT ROUND: Vinyl sales have been steadily increasing
“Vinyl charts reflecting people buying vinyl is great, but I do not think it will affect us and it will not affect our customers,” he told MM.
“If there were some really mainstream albums in the charts, we wouldn’t suddenly start stocking them.
“We have our own identity. We certainly had not been asked for All Time Low before the charts came out.”
In 2014, vinyl LP sales reached an 18-year high in the UK with 1.29 million records sold, following seven years of consistent growth.
Official Charts Company data for the first quarter of 2015 reveals that this trend is continuing at pace, with vinyl album sales up a staggering 69% against the same period last year.
Martin Evans, 50, has seen many trends come and go in his thirty years working at the Oldham Street store, and though he argues the business has always down well, he admits that recently there has been a resurgence of popular interest in vinyl.
“The vinyl thing developed its own momentum when people who were unaware of it, found out that vinyl was still around,” he said.
“People started writing about it, and it has grown more and more. Kids have found their parents record collections and just love them.”
Stores worldwide are celebrating Record Store Day this Saturday by hosting special in-store events and selling limited edition vinyl releases.
Andy believes the event has worked wonders for introducing vinyl culture to new audiences, and is looking forward to the day.
“Record Store Day has been a massive boost. It has always done well here,” he said.
“It brings in a whole new load of customers. It is brilliant. I love the spirit of the day.”
PLAY THAT RECORD: Piccadilly Records holds a vast array of vinyls
Piccadilly Records will be stocking over 300 unique Record Store Day releases on the day and hosting DJ sets from Greater Manchester band Dutch Uncles, store co-manager Philippa Jarman and Charlatans frontman Tim Burgess.
Record Store Day, now in its eight year, is an annual event celebrating vinyl culture, and Martin believes this year’s celebration will be just as special.
“The last few years have been amazing,” he said.
“Last year, the first person in the queue had been queuing from 2pm the day before.
“A lot of people have already told us they will be queuing overnight again.”