Thursday, May 17, 2007

Tapes & Tapes & Tapes

I am, at this moment, listening to a cassette walkman. I am listening to a mix tape my friend Chelka, from freshman year of college, made for me. It has things like Weezer, Jets to Brazil, the Anniversary, Juliana Theory, Ani DiFranco, Nada Surf, Five for Fighting/Dashboard Confessional and Eliott Smith, among others.

I used to take this music very seriously. Man this music is funny. It makes me wanna dance, but silly. I miss mix tapes. I have an ipod that I almost never use. An ipod is the ultimate mix tape, but, somehow loses some of the flavor. That snowy ambiance. I also brought the mix tape my friend Amanda Rediske made me my freshman year in high school (well, technically junior high...). She made me a series of 3 'Amber's Crazy Mixes' mix tapes. They include things like David Bowie, Jimmy Buffet, Blondie, The Doobie Brothers, Alvin and the Chipmunks (singing their famous rendition of Michael's Beat It), among others.

The Mix Tape is a lost art. I used to spend days making a perfect mix tape for a friend. Days, making sure it included certain artists, certain songs, that there was good flow, and not too much air space at the end, not a second wasted. And I loved getting mix tapes. I mean, mix cds are good. They are. But they're so easy. Hop on I Tunes, drag and drop. You can test every variation before burning it. No need for planning. You can make a perfect mix. But man, a good mix tape is special. A rare breed. A labor of love.

The internet, computers. Everything is so easily accessible. Information. Publishing, to the point where it seems there's no need to be selective, to where you can be criticized for being selective b/c it's so easy to put something out there then why not put it all out there? Music, writing, movies...whatever. Art becomes populous.

I should have been born earlier, I think. I'm coming to that conclusion. I listen to older music now, when I bother listening to music, things like Otis Redding and Al Green. Led Zeppelin and Jefferson Airplane (not starship...) As new as I get these days is Prince.

Packing up my cds yesterday for the move I was pulling out stuff I hadn't listened to for years. I havent' bought a cd in probably a year (the last new cd being Fiona Apple's Extraordinary Machine, which was fantastic). I was pulling out stuff that brought me to other times, Modest Mouse, Iron & Wine, Death Cab for Cutie, Jude, and all of them related to a specific time. I don't think I can listen to these albums for anything more than reminiscing, they're so specific. Modest Mouse relates to a specific summer. To Fish Tale brewery, and bbqs, and playing leap frog on the steps outside a bank on a rainy day: a certain group of people. Iron & Wine came from my old roomie Vance. Death Cab was Eric. We saw them at Sasquatch together. Music seems to roll in phases and relate to specific memories.

I'm rambling...

Music makes everything roll out, come forward, want to be touched.

I missed certain songs and didn't know it. Maybe it was just the time.