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'I don’t see this ever going away': Omaha record store sees increase in CD sales, reflecting a national trend

Trend shows there's always a market for novelty and nostalgia
Posted at 7:23 PM, Apr 15, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-16 15:27:59-04

OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — “I don’t see this ever going away. No, no. It’s like, pop culture? It’s never going away," said Mike Farhart, avid CD collector and employee at Homer's Music and Gifts in the Old Market.

Streaming is the most popular way we get our music today, giving us access to nearly every song at the tap of a finger. But for years, there’s been a resurgence of physical forms of music like vinyl records and now CDs.

Data from the Recording Industry Association of America shows in 2021, CD sales grew for the first time since 2004.

“There’s something to be said about looking at it, you know?” Farhart said.

Farhart believes there’s something special about peeling back that plastic, cracking open the CD case and looking through the booklet inside.

But why the recent growth in popularity? Farhart says the pandemic likely played a role.

“I think a lot of the pandemic also created a need in people to recapture their childhood, too. And that made people feel better during the pandemic. Getting something in the mail, contact with something. So I think, yes, I think it really did create a renewed interest in this,” said Farhart.

Mike Fratt is the General Manager at Homer’s. He says people are drawn to CDs because they’re cheaper than vinyl and right now there’s a delay in vinyl production.

“There’s not enough capacity available in the pressing plants to fulfill the needs of the marketplace, so they’re saying they’re eight or nine months behind. So that’s sort of driving more people to the CD if they can’t get the vinyl,” said Fratt.

This recent trend is reflected at Homer’s, proving there’s always a market for novelty and nostalgia.

“Our business has been robust over the last couple of years. We were up significantly in 2021 over 2020. The pandemic played some role in that, though, but we were up like 29% in our CD business and we’re on track for another really good year this year," said Fratt.

Homer’s is gearing up for Record Store Day on April 23, which is an annual celebration of independent record stores. It’s always a busy day, and this year, they will have hundreds of exclusive releases available.

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