Thursday, May 30, 2013

today: tapes

i recently dug out a tape to listen to in the car and on the old jambox in the studio and it had this song on it. i taped it from a 7 inch a long time ago and it's really hitting me hard these days. windows down, turning up this sweet tune when i'm next to the tough guys at the stoplight. this youtube video is lacking the fuzz and hiss of the old dubbed cassette, and i'm no audiophile, but the tape sounds a 100 times better. it's because it's tied to memory. memories of riding my bike around town in the summer with a walkman. those are fuzzy and hissy memories and an old tape makes that case better for me. and recently i've been making the move to TAPES ONLY IN THE STUDIO and i think it's because i don't know what's good for me. if i keep listening to my ipod, i'll skip around or listen to some podcast. i want to listen to things that i don't like at first, but because i keep flipping the tape and listening to it over and over, something is revealed and i suddenly get it. why not spend the summer with 30 songs rather than 300? i don't think i can keep it up, but i will try. i wonder if i have a kid, if by the time that kid is in his thirties, he will be reminiscing over MP3's, and how nice it was to listen to a whole song rather than just having it injected into your brain's emotional center by an invisible tube.

tape pros:
-if i bring a record into the studio i will spill coffee on it
-don't have to charge your device so much, just keep it plugged in, i guess
-they wear out, so you better enjoy your time together (lessons about death)
-sometimes don't sound as good, so now you have something to look for when you go to the record store: the original album
-half price books sells tapes for twenty-five cents. that's a reasonable risk to take on a random new age album, a bootleg country hits compilation, or that 90s neil young album.
-you can get blank tapes at garage sales so cheap
-making covers is fun
-you can spill coffee on them

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