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Everything You Need to Know About the Music Industry’s Move to Friday Release Dates

Album release dates are moving from Tuesdays to Fridays. Confused? Here’s an explainer.

One of the oldest traditions in the music industry is that new albums are typically released on Tuesdays. But a recent study by the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) has discovered that we have been listening to music wrong. The majority of consumers, it said, prefer to listen to music on Friday and Saturdays. And since consumers shouldn’t be bothered to listen to music that is nearly FOUR DAYS OLD by the time the weekend rolls around, the decision has been made to change global release dates from Tuesdays to Fridays. It’s a simple business thing known as supply and demand.


Naturally, as a music consumer, you’re probably confused about all this. You’ve likely got a million questions about what this means for you. Will your music listening experience ever be the same again? Will days ever be the same again? Will music ever be the same again? Probably not. These are trying and confusing times, and it’s OK to admit you’re not exactly sure what it all means. None of us do. There are too many factors at play here. To help you out and guide you through this transition, we’ve put together this handy explainer to answer those questions and navigate The Great Release Date Change of 2015.

What is Friday?
Friday is the sixth day of the calendar week typically proceeding Thursday. It is the precursor to what’s commonly known as the “weekend” and the start of its evening tends to be associated with the idea of shedding the responsibilities associated with a workweek.

What was Tuesday?
Tuesday was the third day of the calendar week and, until recently, has served as the primary release date for music. All kinds of music was released on Tuesday—pop music, hip-hop, jazz. Lots of music. If you wanted music, Tuesday was a day you could buy it.

What is a day?
A day is a measurement of time representing a rotation of the Earth on its axis. It lasts for 24 hours or 1,440 minutes. There are typically seven of them in one week and 365 in one year. Sometimes, there are 366 of them in one year.


What’s the difference between Tuesday and Friday?
Traditionally, Friday comes three days later in the week than Tuesday. For further reference, consult this calendar:

What is music?
Music is dope.

Can I hear an example of music?
Yes, right here:

What is a release?
Historically, people would buy music that they wanted to own. But you couldn’t just go and buy whatever music you wanted—that music also had to exist. That’s where releases come in. A company, such as a record label, could turn the music into a physical product, such as a CD, so that people could buy it. The act of making something available to buy is commonly referred to as “releasing it.”

What can I expect to change?
The immediate change you can expect is that the day of the week when new music will be “released” (see above) will be preceded by “Fri” and not “Tues.”

How will people listen to music?
People will still be able to listen to music the same way they did. So for example, if you listened to music on your mp3 player, you’ll still be able to do that. If you listened to music on your vinyl records, you can still do that, too. The only difference is that if you bought those new mp3s or vinyl records on Tuesdays, you’ll have to wait three additional days until Friday now.

How will that impact my weekly music listening habits?
Expect to change the day on which you plan to buy new music. What this means is that if you previously were scheduled to buy music on Tuesdays, you will now want to adjust your schedule to buy music on Fridays. A sample schedule can be found below, for your reference:


Wait, so I can’t listen to music on Tuesdays anymore?
That depends. If you want to listen to music in a general sense, like a song from a year ago on the radio, yes, you can. But for those who crave the latest the music industry offerings and cutting edge, up-to-the-minute music releases, you’ll have to wait until Friday, when new music is released.

For those who wish to listen to music on days that are not Friday, one big difference will be that those days are not days on which new music is released.

What will that look like?
Listening to music will continue to look like this:

Does this apply to my favorite band?
Yes, your favorite band will be releasing new music for you to listen to on Fridays now, not Tuesdays.

What about Bruno Mars?
Yes, Bruno Mars will no longer be releasing new music on Tuesdays, but on Fridays now.

Are you shitting me right now?
Nah, dead serious, bro.

Where does this mean I can listen to music?
Listening to music can currently be done in all 50 US states as well as most physical planes of existence. For a map of where in the US you can listen to music, see below:

What is this thing?

This is the thing you can plug into another thing to get music to come out. Sometimes this act is referred to as “passing the aux cord.”

Is the federal government doing anything about music?
So far, no. It’s unlikely that the government will be making a statement on music anytime soon. But keep checking for updates.


What’s next for music?
It’s unclear at the moment what the future of music will be. What we do know is that it will now be released on Fridays and not Tuesdays, as it had been previously.

Do you know what this is?

Oh man. Better get that checked out, it looks real bad.

What is Rick Perry’s stance on this?
The former Texas governor and Presidential candidate has not publicly issued a statement or weighed in on the release date move.

Hey, can I see one more infographic about this whole thing?
Yeah, here you go:

What do you use to make your graphs?
This site is pretty good.

What does TGIF stand for?
TGIF is a popular acronym for the phrase “Thank God It’s Friday.” It is frequently used to express excitement about the upcoming weekend and corresponding end of the work week (see “What Is Friday?” above).

Is it safe to say "TGIF" about all this news?

Where can I learn more about music?
Find out more about music and the practice of listening to it right here on Noisey:

This didn’t answer my question.
Leave any remaining questions in the comments!