Remember when music was a physical object — before it was just an ethereal file floating from one digital device to another? There were technical snafus, social mores and some heavy lifting that went along with the era of vinyl and magnetic tape.
Herein, a few:
1. Using a pencil to fix an unraveling cassette tape.
2. Moving boxes and boxes of LPs from dorm room to apartment to apartment
3. Merging record and CD collections with your partner.
My rule: Do not merge until married. (And even then, Dave Matthews is never allowed to mingle)
4. Taping over someone else’s mixtape.
The ultimate diss.
5. Using Scotch tape as a cassette-tape wonder tool.
By taping over the little notches on top to record a mixtape over an unwanted cassette.
6. 8-Track Tapes
And that satisfying sound of the 8-track tape clicking and connecting into its gears in your parents’ Buick Regal car radio.
7. When people actually cared about speakers.
8. Losing the 45 spider
Aka that little plastic insert. You’d fashion one out of tape, paper, whatever you had.
9. Being flat broke in 1992 and selling CDs for cash.
Walking into the Philadelphia Record Exchange in South Philly and sheepishly handing over a stack of CDs while the sales clerk would wave me off and mutter, “I’ll get to them,” and I pretend to hang around and look at other CDs, and then I’d actually see three or four I wanted, so I end up trading and never getting the money.
10. Holding beautiful, luxurious album covers.
And actually reading the liner notes.
Share your own “music-as-item” memories below…