The Death of CDs

With Best Buy planning on phasing out their CD library this July, music artists have claimed that CDs have become far less relevant with the rise of MP3.

Travis Moss, Staff Writer

A few weeks ago, Best Buy had announced that they would stop selling CDs as of July 1st due to declining sales. However, they will continue to sell vinyl records. Other retailers such as Target, continue to sell CDs. Nevertheless, it’s still the end of an era for music fans.

“At one point, Best Buy was the most powerful music merchandiser in the U.S. But nowadays, it’s a shadow of its former self, with a reduced and shoddy offering of CDs,” writes Billboard. “Sources suggest that the company’s CD business is only generating about $40 million annually.”

Some students, however do continue to buy CDs due to the ability to own a physical copy of an album.

“This is too bad to hear, Best Buy has always had a good selection. I also enjoy the feeling of actually owning albums instead of just having access to them behind a screen,” stated junior, Joanna Contreras.

However, others have liked the rising phenomenon of vinyl records having a comeback in the music industry.

“I’ve seen it coming, but I’m not surprised they would choose to sell records over CDs due to the superior sound quality from the analog sound,” stated senior, Mason Moss who actively purchases records and works at a record store himself.

Artists, have addressed the rise of MP3 by declaring the format as dead and continuing to release their albums exclusively through streaming services such as Tidal, Apple Music or Spotify.

“No More CDs from me,” stated Kanye West regarding why he chose to only release his album; “The Life of Pablo” exclusively through Tidal and eventually through other streaming platforms as well.

Other musicians, however have criticized the rise of MP3 due to the easy accessibility and decreased profit. Taylor Swift repeatedly refused to allow her music to be accessed through Spotify due to the lack of profit coming from the platform.

“I think part of the problem with most of that is just the foundation of respect or entitlement. I think entitlement is probably the better word. I think, just in general, our society has gotten to a point where just you click a button, you get what you want when you want it. So until we get to a point where we realize you don’t necessarily always get what you want when you want it, we’re gonna have a problem,” stated Tool frontman Maynard James Keenan on why he refuses to allow his music onto a digital platform due to the use of file-sharing and the easy accessibility of music in the digital age.

Some artists such as Chance the Rapper have become successful through the use of streaming and putting mixtapes online and became one of the first musicians to become a Grammy-award winner from exclusively streaming on the internet.

“I don’t release my music for free, I release it for freedom,” stated Chance the Rapper on ‘Blessings’ off his third mixtape Coloring Book.