Friday is the New Official Release Day for Albums
Music fans likely have plenty of memories of eagerly-awaiting a particular Tuesday. For many years, this was the day of the week that all albums would become available in the United States. This gave occasional meaning to a day that could often be mundane otherwise. After much debate, however, the global recording industry has decided to officially make Friday the default day for album releases.
According to Billboard, the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) released a statement claiming that a study concluded that the majority of consumers who actually care which day new music is released prefer to hear it on Fridays and Saturdays. Frances Moore, IFPI stated that music fans “want music when it’s available on the Internet—not when it’s ready to be released in their country.”
The move has proved to be polarizing in the U.S. already with various industry names speaking out. Some are concerned that the move favors the already successful mainstream market, as Beggars Group chairman Martin Mills said in a recent mainfesto, “I fear this move will also lead to a market in which the mainstream dominates, and the niche, which can be tomorrow’s mainstream, is further marginalized. I fear it will further cement the dominance of the few —and that is exactly what it is intended to do.”
A globally-accepted release day has been favored by many in the industry for a while, but a strong portion of supporters of independent music pushed for Tuesday to be that day. An affiliation of independent record stores in the U.S. and Canada known as The Department of Record Stores felt that the transition would be easier for the U.S. and the U.K.—which are the world’s top two music markets—because the U.K.’s release day is Monday. This would likely save costs for smaller operators in the business. Regardless, the move to Friday is now official.