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Music All-Time Best Sellers an Eclectic Mix

26 Jul, 2004 By: Jessica Wolf

Music DVD is still a burgeoning category, and the top-selling music DVDs of all time show an eclectic mix of collectors' tastes, ranging from hot stars like Linkin' Park and 50 Cent to classic groups like Led Zeppelin and The Beatles.

Sales are growing as more quality product pumps into the pipeline and as consumers start to understand the way music DVD fits into their overall music collections, said Paul DeGooyer, VP of Warner Strategic Marketing (WSM).

“I think people are starting to look at DVD as part of the official canon of the work, as stuff you must own if you are a fan of that artist or group,” he said.

The success of DVDs like Linkin Park: Live in Texas, the top-selling music DVD to date released last November by Warner Records, shows how much visibility can boost a music DVD title.

“That's what can happen if you attach a DVD to a platinum-selling band,” he said.

And music DVD titles have legs that stretch farther than the typical Hollywood studio release model, he added. Retailers will stock titles like music product, reordering to keep the presence on the racks. That's one reason titles like the Led Zeppelin DVD, which came out more than a year ago, or Josh Groban: Live in Concert, which streeted in December 2002, are still such strong sellers.

Two of the top-selling music DVDs — the Led Zeppelin DVD and Concert for George — are higher-ticket double-disc items with $29.99 SRPs.

The fact that titles like these and other dual sets that may not drop below $20 at retail appear on the chart is evidence that consumers are willing to spend on the product if it's put together in a quality presentation, DeGooyer said.

“They're voting with their dollars,” he said. “They're buying. We're on our way to having a record year on just the music side.”

Many of the titles in the top all- time music DVD sellers — 50 Cent: New Breed; Linkin' Park: Live in Texas; Coldplay Live; Rob Zombie Past, Present & Future; Lil' John and the East Side Boys Part II and Josh Groban Live in Concert — were released with one element promoted as a bonus add-on.

That's obviously done well in boosting sales, but record labels should be careful not to devalue the DVD portion of the product by merely slapping on a music video that's available elsewhere or some less-than-stellar concert footage just to boost the CD sale, DeGooyer said.

“But I think we're really coming out of that now,” he said.

The good news for music DVD, he said, is that artists are becoming more and more involved in the projects, like members of Led Zeppelin were for their elaborate DVD top seller and Olivia Harrison and Eric Clapton were for Concert for George.

WSM is working closely with Eric Clapton for his upcoming Crossroads DVD as well as Jimmy Page and Robert Plant for a DVD release of Page and Plant Unleaded, both due later this year.

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