David Bowie's Blackstar is the best-selling vinyl of the past 12 months

By Mark Savage
Music reporter

Image source, Sony
Image caption,
Bowie died shortly after Blackstar was released

David Bowie's Blackstar is the best-selling vinyl album of the past 12 months, the Official Chart Company has revealed ahead of Record Store Day.

The star's swansong even outsold Adele's 25 - despite the fact it was only released on 8 January.

Bowie died two days later, and many of his albums later returned to the chart.

His Nothing Has Changed and 1972's Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust also feature in the top 10 vinyl albums for the first three months of 2016.

Overall, classic albums dominate the vinyl market, with Amy Winehouse's Back To Black and Fleetwood Mac's Rumours continuing to sell.

Collectors will have the opportunity to grab hundreds of one-off vinyl records this weekend, as part of the ninth annual Record Store Day.

Florence and the Machine and Foals are among the bands releasing new songs for the event, while Madonna, Elvis, the Manic Street Preachers and Chase and Status are all putting out limited edition EPs and albums.

Bowie's classic single The Man Who Sold The World will be re-issued on picture disc, while The Doors release the concert album Live at the Aquarius Theatre Vol 1 for the first time on vinyl.

Fleetwood Mac are also releasing "Alternate Tusk" - a double album featuring alternative versions of the songs on their experimental 1979 record, Tusk.

Media caption,
The secrets behind the vinyl revival

Record Store Day started in the US as part of an effort to tempt people back into record stores, and shed the image of old men in anoraks, thumbing through racks of vinyl.

It has been partly credited with a resurgence in interest in vinyl. In the UK, the market has risen for eight consecutive years.

The British Phonographic Industry (BPI) says 637,056 LPs were bought between January and March, an increase of 61.8% year-on-year.

Surprisingly, many of these sales have been prompted by streaming sites - with 45% of music fans saying they bought a vinyl album after hearing it on YouTube, SoundCloud, Apple Music or Spotify (amongst others).

But research by ICM Unlimited for the BBC suggests that half of these records go unplayed - with 7% of vinyl consumers admitting they do not even own a record player.

Although vinyl sales only account for a small part of the music market (3.9%), sales look set to increase further, after high street giant Sainsbury's started stocking vinyl in March.

"It is encouraging to see the resurgence of this much-loved format continuing at pace in 2016," said Martin Talbot, chief executive of the Official Charts.

"It is entirely fitting that Bowie's final release, Blackstar, is the album that Britain's vinyl shoppers have taken to their heart in droves so far this year, proving the Starman's lasting impact on the charts, and the nation's record collections, for undoubtedly many more years to come."

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