Young millionaire Lil Wayne sacrificed his own body to sell 2.9 million albums last year, but surprisingly the record industry continued going straight to hell in 2008, if "numbers" are to be believed:

Increases in digitally downloaded albums and songs were not enough to offset a nearly 20% plunge in CD sales in the U.S., according to year-end figures published Wednesday by the Nielsen Co.'s SoundScan service.

That's 90 million fewer CDs sold, which adds up to a hell of a lot of revenue, even if they were in the sale bin at Virgin.

Amid a flurry of problems, including the delays of several major artists' albums that had blockbuster potential, sales in many weeks near year's end were down 20% or more.

2008 Music Industry Year in Review: Not even Lil Wayne can make up for Axl Rose. [WSJ; pic via The Sun]