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Archive for Monday, January 13, 1992

STORES SAY GRAMMY CAN BOOST SALES

January 13, 1992

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Recognition as a Grammy Award nominee can lead to an increase in record and compact disc sales, say three local record store employees.

"They normally boost up the week before the awards and then heavily the day and week after," said Lewis Windham, manager of Hastings Books Music & Video, 2000 W. 23rd, about sales of Grammy-nominated albums.

The National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences last week nominated five albums for Album of the Year. The award will be presented Feb. 25 at Radio City Music Hall in New York.

The nominated albums are "Heart in Motion," by Amy Grant; "Luck of the Draw," by Bonnie Raitt; "Out of Time," by R.E.M.; "The Rhythm of the Saints," by Paul Simon; and "Unforgettable," by Natalie Cole.

Steve Wilson, manager of Kief's Discount Records & Stereo Supply, 2429 Iowa, pointed out that the five albums generally sold from 300,000 to 400,000 copies before they were nominated. He said R.E.M.'s album had sold extremely well, while Simon's album had good sales but did not sell as well as predicted.

"Those albums will be boosted," Wilson said, referring to Simon's album.

Although the Grammys help record sales, Wilson noted it was only one aspect of a record's success.

"I do not deny that Grammy awards have an impact on sales, but on the other hand there are other kinds of exposure, awards, critics' kudos that factor in," he said.

Both Windham and Mark Smirl, a clerk at Streetside Records, 1403 W. 23rd, said their stores would stage promotions for the nominated albums.

"Our store will probably run a pre-Grammy thing with a display," Smirl said.

He said the biggest sales push will follow the awards presentation.

"The nominations really don't make a big difference, but the winner does," Smirl said.

Windham said a Grammy award also could help sell a few copies of an artist's earlier work. He said if Simon's "The Rhythm of the Saints" won, some customers might buy a copy of his 1986 album "Graceland," which also won a Grammy as album of the year. However, Windham said the public would not be interested in albums more than a couple of years old, even by a 1991 Grammy winner.

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