Mix Tapes

Ok, so I’m seriously dating myself here. If you’ve ever made, or received, a mix tape you’re probably in my age group. These are a relic of the past. Today it’s all about playlists. I don’t even think people burn CDs anymore.

Maybe it’s because I’m still a musician at heart, but I’ve always associated people, places and events with certain songs or pieces of music. The right song on the radio can transport me back to the memory of where I was, what I was doing and what was important in life during that time.

In cleaning out my desk stuff, I came across a couple of mix tapes. One was made for me by a dear friend. Band Camp songs 1988. Wow. Funny how just reading the song titles she had so carefully written on the cassette label brought back all the memories and angst of my summer at 16.

The other was a copy of a tape I made for a special person on an anniversary. I remember slaving for weeks over that thing- constantly listening to the radio so I could tape a certain song when it came on, borrowing other tapes from friends and scouting out the cassette singles at Radio Shack to find the perfect mix of songs. Then the hours spent copying and dubbing each one onto a master tape. Lots and lots of work.

My kids won’t ever get this. In this world of iTunes, playlists and apps, any son is instantly available. To me it takes some of the fun out of it. Remember calling in a request to a radio station and waiting expectantly for them to play it? Such a big deal back in the day.

Is anyone else like this? Do you associate music with people places and things? Or is it just running constantly in the background? Stop, take a moment and just listen. You might be surprised.

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