Latest NewsAlbum sales down, on-demand streams up, according to Luminate's Year-End Music Report

Album sales down, on-demand streams up, according to Luminate’s Year-End Music Report

Streaming continued to grow in Canada in 2022, with on-demand audio streams hitting the 100 billion mark for the first time ever in a single year in late November and a +14% increase in total on-demand streaming consumption, according to Luminate’s 2022 Year-End Music Report.

Luminate, best known for fuelling the Billboard Charts, was formerly known as P-MRC Data/Nielsen Music. Reflecting the period from Dec. 31, 2021 through Dec. 29, 2022, their annual data insights report indicates worldwide, overall streaming consumption grew by 25.6% year-over-year.

Total on-demand song streaming (audio and video) was up 14% in Canada last year to 122.7B, with on-demand audio streaming up 13.4% (112.9B) and on-demand video streaming up 21.7% (9.8B).

Sales of physical and digital album sales were down 13.8% with cassette sales the only area of growth, up 26.6% to just over 13 thousand units. 1.1 million vinyl records were sold in Canada, down 2.3% from 2021. Digital album sales experienced a sharp drop of 18.5% to 1.9M, while CD sales fell nearly 15% to 2.3M.

The Canadian catalogue accounted for nearly 72% of listening share, with total album consumption up 15.8% from last year. By genre, Luminate found that country and rock listeners are more likely to tune AM/FM radio than those who listen to pop, r&b, and hip hop.

Evolving consumption habits

The company says this year’s annual compilation of data-driven insights is defined by the evolving mix of consumption habits as artists like Taylor Swift, Bad Bunny and Beyonce achieved successful album launches across both streaming and physical sales. New albums from those artists launched successfully on the Billboard Canadian Albums Chart during the week of their release, but each artist achieved that success through a different mix of consumption means.

For example, Bad Bunny earned 99% share of consumption via streaming alone for his album Un Verano Sin Ti year-to-date, but only 87% of the total consumption numbers for Beyoncé’s Renaissance were from streams year-to-date and only 71% of total consumption numbers for Taylor Swift’s Midnights were from streaming. Notably, Swift’s physical product sales accounted for nearly 23% of her numbers with multiple vinyl and CD offerings for fans. The album sold 575K vinyl albums in its first week in the U.S., breaking a record previously set by Harry Styles in May. Swift also achieved 1.58M equivalent albums upon the first seven days of release in the U.S., making it the biggest release week in seven years.

To gauge the success of a hit in this integrated environment, Luminate has introduced the “Global Hit Score” which adjusts the total consumption for a song by also accounting for in-country rank and weighted by each country’s market share. A song will get more points if it ranks highly in more countries, and even more points if those countries have a higher market share. The maximum score that a song can receive is 100, reserved for those that achieve #1 in every country in the selection. The closer the Global Hit Score is to 100, the more widespread the success of the song.

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Connie Thiessen
Connie Thiessen
Connie has worked coast-to-coast as a reporter, editor, anchor and host at CKNW and News 1130 in Vancouver, News 95.7 and CBC in Halifax, and CFCW Edmonton, among other stations. With a passion for music, film and community service, she led News 95.7 to a 2013 Atlantic Journalism Award and regional RTDNA award for Best Radio Newscast. More recently, she was nominated for Music Journalist of the Year at Canadian Music Week 2019. To report a typo or error please email -

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