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The 10 Most Popular Artists on Vinyl, According to Discogs

Ellen Gutoskey
The Beatles may have broken up in 1970, but their music lives on (and on and on and on).
The Beatles may have broken up in 1970, but their music lives on (and on and on and on). / Avalon/GettyImages
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Though music streaming platforms may have supplanted physical media as the go-to way to play your favorite songs, plenty of people are still actively expanding their well-curated vinyl record collections. In fact, vinyl actually outsold CDs for the first time in decades back in late 2019.

In short, vinyl records are still surprisingly popular—and according to a new study from UK financial comparison service Money.co.uk, no one is more popular on vinyl than The Beatles. To come to that conclusion, the researchers crunched numbers from Discogs, an online music database and retailer where millions of users catalog and add to their own music collections across many formats. Each album’s page includes statistics showing how many Discogs users own it. So Money.co.uk took a look at that data for 1.3 million vinyl records and then ranked artists based on their aggregate totals.

The Beatles totaled more than 3.3 million, outpacing runner-up Pink Floyd by more than half a million. As for which Beatles album reigns supreme, the title goes to Abbey Road—not exactly surprising, as that album was also named the best-selling vinyl record of the past decade in 2020. The rest of the top 10 is pretty predictable, too. David Bowie, Led Zeppelin, and Queen rounded out the top five, and The Rolling Stones edged out Nirvana for the sixth spot. Elvis Presley came in tenth with more than 934,000 records on Discog users’s shelves.

While the study is far from a comprehensive look at all vinyl record sales throughout history, it’s a good indicator of which artists do really well on vinyl. You can see the full list below; and if it prompts you to thumb through your old boxes of records, that’s not a bad idea—some of them could be worth a fortune.

  1. The Beatles // 3,369,578
  2. Pink Floyd // 2,815,586
  3. David Bowie // 2,178,928
  4. Led Zeppelin // 1,879,600
  5. Queen // 1,311,065
  6. The Rolling Stones // 1,097,877
  7. Nirvana // 1,075,811
  8. The Smiths // 998,687
  9. AC/DC // 957,002
  10. Elvis Presley // 934,547
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