Despite the hardships the music industry faced in 2020, recorded music revenues experienced growth for the fifth consecutive year.
According to the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), United States recorded music revenues grew 9.2% in 2020 to an estimated retail value of $12.2 billion. Meanwhile, recorded music measured at wholesale value rose 8.9% to $8.0 billion.
This was largely due to the growth of music streaming revenues by 13.4% to $10.1 billion in 2020, as paid subscriptions to on-demand streaming, including Spotify, Apple Music, and Amazon Music Unlimited, continued to be the primary driving force of revenue.
In fact, subscriptions reached an all-time high, growing 14.6% to $7.0 billion in 2020. The average number of subscriptions jumped by 15 million from 60.4 million in 2019 to 75.5 million in 2020.
Physical music sales remained flat at $1.1 billion, followed by digital downloads, down 18% to $674 million in 2020.