The Whiteboard Project

Column// Why Should Primark start Selling CDs?

After mulling over Universal Music Group and retail giant Primark’s new deal to begin selling albums from the label within a select handful of the clothing merchant’s stores, for at least 16 hours, we have come to the decision that the deal in hand is, in fact, a pretty great idea. Although there has been some cynicism towards the proposal, we have put together a quintet of crucial points that suppose that selling CD’s in Primark isn’t such a bad idea after all.

1. Since the dawning of popular music, fashion and music have been two necessary components that have gone hand in hand throughout the ages. Therefore, the deal in question will simply bridge the gap in the market between the two. Urban Outfitters have already began to stock their shelves with vinyl represses of some of the world’s most game-changing acts and Claire’s Accessories have replenished a dose of music into the store catalogue: so it’s only natural for vaster retailers to jump aboard, stocking acts such as Jay-Z, Rihanna and Lady Gaga.

2. Next up, when did it become acceptable to parade around in a Ramones T-shirt without any given knowledge of the world’s greatest punk band? Well maybe the deal will flourish and other labels will latch on, morphing Primark into a record shop of varied tastes, teaching the youth of today about the bands that they unknowingly emblazon across their chests.

3. The third point is possibly the most important of all: ever since the 1990’s music stores have been taken over and perhaps ruined by the Internet. With the decline of Woolworths, Tower Records, Virgin and Zavvi – the only high street shop that meets up to the standard of the aforementioned is HMV, but as the years have passed has started to reign in the race of marketing multi-media products. So with this revival, if you will, physical CD’s may just become as popular as our beloved vinyl records that have, somehow, resurfaced.

4. Another problem that is caused by the Internet is that of illegal downloads. Nobody used LimeWire or Napster anymore, but YouTube to MP£ converters are becoming highly renowned as a fix for enjoying the newest tracks, if you’re not moral enough to fork out 99 hard earned pennies for a single track on ITunes. But this resurgence and promotion of physical music should bring about a sense of longing to spend on music, as opposed to a novelty tiger suit that doesn’t even fit properly.

5. Finally, who remembers Primark’s child labour scandal of 2008? While bands don’t often receive the funds that they rightly deserve from the sale of an album, there is no comparison to the funding of sweatshop workers. So maybe this could be a chance for Primark to redeem theirselves? Perhaps the retailers will cash in at a smaller profit by selling CD albums then they would have done by selling a T-shirt that cost pence to manufacture for £4. It’s all starting to make sense now. Perhaps the world of economics is becoming a much nicer place? Or perhaps these retailers are onto a marketing feast that was, somehow, never thought up before. Either way, we’re sure to find a heap of Universal albums in our Christmas stockings this year!


Jonathan Hatchman.

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