Thunder Bay, Ont. music lovers are following an international trend towards buying more vinyl according to a local record shop owner.

William Rutledge, owner of New Day Records, said 2015 saw more foot traffic and sales of vinyl in his specialty music store on Park Street.

According to Nielsen Music's annual report, international sales of vinyl were up by nearly 30 per cent last year.

Rutledge said he didn't see quite that kind of increase in sales, but he feels interest in vinyl is definitely on the upswing among his customers, who tend to be between the ages 25 and 45. 

"And I think quite a bit of that demographic is people who would have grown up with vinyl," he said.

William Rutledge, New Day Records

William Rutledge, of New Day Records, said people have missed both the warm sound and the packaging of vinyl records. (photo credit: Gord Ellis/CBC)

Rutledge said many music lovers enjoy the warmer sound of vinyl over digital streams and MP3s.

But he said just as many people enjoy the packaging of a vinyl record and the physical reminder that they've bought music.

"I think in terms of the large growth, packaging is a large part," he said. "Vinyl is a reaction to the intangibility of digital music. You want to go back to the biggest thing you can hold, smell and really feel like you own."

Rutledge said about 70 per cent of customers in his shop are looking for something familiar or something in particular.

He said the rest are looking to discover something new.

The Nielsen Music's 2015 year-end report said vinyl sales now compromise nine per cent of all physical album sales.

Nielsen said total album sales dropped 6.1 per cent from 257 million in 2014 to 241 million in 2015.