Are Old Rap MP3s Hip-Hop’s Hottest New Collectible?

MP3s are bubbling thanks to the influx of streaming and the fact that a whole generation of classic hip-hop songs and mixtapes are not available on streaming services.
Last year, vinyl sales surpassed CD sales for the first time since the ‘80s. Americans spent well over $200 million on vinyl, a much-needed boost — however short term it might be — to physical music sales. But even as vinyl breaks out of the nostalgia tag to become a viable revenue stream, the question remains — what is the next collectible music artifact that will engage fans and potentially present opportunities for new revenue streams?

MP3s, an all but forgotten relic of the days of Limewire and the hip-hop blog era, are bubbling back up to the surface thanks to the influx of streaming and the fact that a whole generation of classic songs and mixtapes are not available on streaming services, due to sampling and licensing issues. This climate has created an underground group of MP3 collectors who have held on to some of the past era’s most treasured audio.


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