Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The Mixed-Tape

Recently, I stumbled across one of my old Mixed tapes.

When I was a kid I was short on resources to get music and so I would take a day and record my favorite songs from the "Alternative" radio station, back in 1992. That was when the word "Alternative" didn't stand for the same three Nirvana songs played over and over again like they are today.

Don't get me wrong, I love Nirvana. But...you all know what I'm talking about. Radio kinda sucks now-a-days. Of course it could have sucked then too, but I was twelve we had three stations Top 40 (same three songs rotated,) Country (not in my tea cup, thank-you) and Alternative.

My mixed tape consisted of all sorts of wonderful songs that transported me back to my musically inspired better part of my youth. Then the thought came upon me, what do kids do now? There are no cassettes, and Cd's are rapidly fading into our memories.

I remember my friends and I sharing mixed tapes with one another like they were Tic-Tac's. Or a boy I liked would make me a tape of songs selected by him, my heart would skip a beat. They were the perfect birthday present because it had to be thought out, and it was so personable.

It was always a fantastic treat to hear the music my friends had to offer, usually stolen from their older brother or sister because like I said... radio sucks where I live.

I got to thinking about how one would express themselves through music and do they even do that anymore? If anyone knows, feel free to let me know because the mixed-tape is a terrible thing to waste. Do IPods/MP3 players offer up a mix of music such as this?

Most of my cassettes are so old now the tape is starting to snap. My first STP tape is no longer playable. And many of my cherished songs, which were one of a kind on my mixed tapes, will soon be lost. It saddens me, they were one of the good parts of my youth, brought me many shiny happy times with R.E.M., or filled my heart with good angst, right along with Tori Amos and Smashing Pumpkins...

The day of the mixed-tape is over, but it is something I truly cherish.


PJ Ray said...

Hey, Hinny

I love mixed tapes and cd's as well. I'm a musician - so expressing yourself through music is MAJOR for me.

I think you may enjoy Pandora.com - you type in a band or artist/artists you like and they load up a variety of those and others like those - new sounds that are similar - maybe artists you've never heard of, because they aren't getting radio airplay and you can listen - tweak your "radio station" say - Yes, I like this - no, I don't -dont' play this again - yes, give me more of this person and such and it is great. It's also - FREE so there's that too.

Anyway - I love using it and I bet you will too if your computer can handle it, which it should - my old computer never had trouble with it.

Anway let me see if I can do a link thing.


Bea Sempere said...

I'm with you on this one, mixed tapes were awesome. You could take your favorite songs from an album, off the radio, and add variety.

PJ hit it right with Pandora. I belong to Pandora and it is great to create different radio stations and you can share with other members.

I also have an iPod and you can create playlists, and if you really want, convert the songs to mp3 and create a CD for someone. They can also download it and add to iTunes. Or you can just upload and send through RapidShare.

Even though you can share music, the beauty of creating tapes with ease and sharing it with a sweetie, or friend are gone. *sighs*

At least we have our memories.

Haggis said...

Back when I was a kid we had to chisel our music onto rocks. It was real hard to do a mix. Then, of course, we had nothing to play it on anyhow.

But PJ is right. Give Pandora a try. I think you'll like it. :)

bettielee said...

Well, lovey, your post hit home for me too. However, I have embraced digital music with a mad passion. You can make a playlist with the click of a mouse. I have a God awful number of cd's. I was ALWAYS with the tapes and the radio, and the two deck cassette recorder, and would spend saturdays waiting for THAT song, that song I was missing to come on the radio so I could "get" it. It's so much easier now to go on itunes and pay $1.29 for a song I want...

K.Hinny said...

Thanks Bettie, Haggis, Bea and Pj! I will definitely check Pandora out.

I am a HUGE lover of music and I'm always trying to get new stuff.

I also like a place called Last.fm. It's a radio place where you can type in an artist and they'll play similar music.

I have an MP3 player so I'm not totally out of the loop. I was just musing about the "what was"

And Haggis, for being born so long ago you certainly have taken to technology wonderfully! I think you have gone above and beyond what I know. :D

Thanks for your comments! Happy writing!


Shadow said...

Those poor poor tapes. I have a few left, but sadly they do break so easily. What I do have now is pandora radio. You can "train" it to your tastes and have several stations to listen to. I don't know what I would do without it when I am in a writing frenzy.

K.Hinny said...

Thanks Shadow! I'm going to check it out soon as well! I'm really into writing to music, it helps create just the right atmosphere. :D

Anonymous said...

Hi Hinny!
You know, about 2 years ago I finally took my big old case of mixed tapes and spent a weekend going through them, downloading the music and recreating them digitally into playlists. It took forever, but I finally could toss the tapes that were cracking and disintegrating and starting to smell bad. LOL

Last FM and Pandora are very similar. Last FM may even be better though, because you can skip as many times as you want I think. But I like both. : )

K.Hinny said...

Hey Soapy!!

Thanks for commenting on my blog! Thanks for the info too!!

Hope you're doing well!
Happy writing

Demon Hunter said...

Awesome, Kara. I still have my mixed tapes. :-D

K.Hinny said...

Thanks Tyhitia!!

I love my mixed tapes. They bring up good memories and shit. But it's sad cauze the are a dying breed!

mmcelhinny said...

What was nice about mixed tapes is that when you made them for someone they had to listen to them from beginning to end in the order that you intended. With a mixed CD, they can skip songs easily and miss the meaning behind the mix.

Unless they have one of those fancy cassette players that fast forward and stop at the next song......

K.Hinny said...

You are correct sir! :P Skipping songs was too much trouble bc the damn rewind button always missed the beginning of the song, or landed in the middle somewheres...