26 August 2009

The Mix Tape

current mood: insatiable

Though I do wish you’d come over
But I'm warning you if you do
I'd be lying if I said I didn't have designs on you
I'd be lying if I said I didn't have designs on you
~ “Designs on You” by the Old 97s

The other day someone posted a facebook blurb regarding the lost art of the mix tape. While it is true that making someone a Cd now has become a high tech process, with a gorgeous, pristine end-product, there is something to be said about the time and thought which went into creating a mixetape for someone. The process was painstakingly meticulous.
Step 1: Lay all cassette tapes out on the floor so that the appropriate songs are within reach.
Step 2: Make a list of the songs so that an estimate can be made as to whether or not they will all fit on the cassette tape.
Step 3: Verify that each cassette tape is cued to the correct song.
Step 4: Record an audio opening that introduces the music (very similar to being your own DJ)
Step 5: Start the blank tape recording then hit ‘Play’ on the first tape.
Step 6: Listen to the song in its entirety (because everyone knows that high-speed dubbing gives the mixed tape a high pitched tone in the background which ruins the quality).
Step 7: When the song is over, hot Pause on the recording side and eject the original tape.
Step 8: Insert next cassette tape to record from.
Step 9: Repeat these steps until one side of the mix tape is full. If the last song did not record in its entirety, rewind to the beginning of that song on the mix tape and replace partial song with more audio chat, telling the person how great they are, etc.
Step 10: Flip mix tape and begin again on Side 2/B.
Once the mix tape is recorded, grab another blank tape and record the entire mix tape for your personal use; because it’s a damn good mix.

Grab a pen and write down each song and artist for the Cassette insert. Draw pretty pictures or add stickers, etc, for decoration purposes.

There you have it, the perfect gift for your BFF; BF; GF; even a non-boyfriend, if you happen to have one of those instead.

Making a CD Mix on the computer comes nowhere close to the purity of a true ‘mix tape’. Clicking and dragging music, followed by pressing “record CD’, does not even touch the emotional investment of creating a mix tape.

I will admit that there are exceptions to this generalization. There are some people who invest a ton of time and energy into making a CD for someone. They record their own voice, add fun little excerpts between songs, and design the inserts themselves. Those people are exempt from feeling the sting of this commentary.

People who should feel the sting even more intensely, however, are those who just make an iTunes playlist for someone and throw it on a flashdrive or a zip file for someone else’s use. Those people suck!

PERSONAL NOTE: Thank you for the birthday wishes!

CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: We should get together. Soon.

Eidetic Vision

Main Entry: ei·det·ic Pronunciation: I-'det-ik Function: adjective : marked by or involving extraordinarily accurate and vivid recall especially of visual images - an eidetic memory Merriam-Webster's Dictionary, © 2002 Merriam-Webster, Inc.