Why Vinyl Records Are Making a Comeback

Way Back When
3 min readMar 12, 2021
“The four building blocks of the universe are fire, water, gravel and vinyl.” — Dave Berry

The year 2020 was a monumental year for several reasons that you already know. But if you missed the past year for any reason (a coma perhaps), you can get a quick recap of 2020 here.

A once in a century pandemic aside, 2020 was monumental in other ways. Despite the world shifting to a completely remote environment and technology becoming more important than ever, 2020 marked the first year in a generation where vinyl records surpassed CD sales.

This may come as an absolute shock to many people. In a year where many people conducted more meetings through Zoom than in person, how is it that “ancient” technology like vinyl records managed to outsell newer (somewhat ancient) technology like CD players?

Before we answer this puzzling question, first you have to know that the demographic driving the resurgence of vinyl records isn’t even the Boomers and Gen Xers who grew up blasting The Beatles, Michael Jackson, or Elton John on original vinyl. It’s Millenials and Zoomers.

This fact alone causes many to scratch their head. Why would the two generations who have grown up during a time where you can access any song or album without even clicking a button want to deal with an outdated piece of technology like a vinyl record?

The answer to this question is quite simple. Back in the day, someone would invite their friends over to show them their vinyl collection. Now through the use of social media, you can snap a picture, upload it to Facebook or Instagram, and show the whole world.

Music lovers across genres now have platforms that allow them to connect and share their interests without being limited by the physical world’s proximity and travel burdens.

Another undeniable fact about vinyl records is that they’re cool. There’s something about browsing through a record store (or surfing the web), finding the perfect record, taking it home, and listening to high-quality music. Not only is the sound quality better, but the whole experience is enchanting. You find new details in songs you’ve heard hundreds of times, get flashbacks of earlier simpler days, and enter a deep state of nirvana (no-pun intended) that streaming doesn’t achieve.

Additionally, the cover art on albums is displayed in a much better fashion on vinyl records. Don’t believe us, just go to a vinyl record shop and compare the art on your phone compared to having it in the physical. There are so many little details missed within the artwork when it’s on your phone than when you hold the album in a physical version.

Vinyl records are also a sign of someone having an exquisite taste in music. Try going to a record shop and find an album that’s currently trending on the Billboard 100. While you’ll undoubtedly find some of the top albums in there, many of the “hottest” albums right now are missing from record stores.

That’s because people who prefer vinyl records are critical about the music they listen to. Instead of just listening to songs that rely on heavy production, catchy choruses, and trap drums, vinyl consumers listen to music with a certain air of excellence. Whether it’s a band with excellent harmony, a singer who touches the soul, or a rapper with unmatched lyrics, vinyl connoisseurs have a particular ear for production. Perhaps the reason why their ears are so good is that they listen to vinyl records; the sound quality is unmatched.

So what are you waiting for? Join the millions of people who are once again recognizing the beauty and elegance of vinyl records. Create a collection, share it on social media, and enter into the cool kids club of vinyl records lovers.

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Way Back When

Way Back When is an online marketplace whose goal is to encourage conscious spending by connecting customers directly with small businesses.