|Tape cassettes from back in the '80s and '90s.|
Remember cassette tapes also known as compact cassettes? The popular brands were distributed by TDK and Maxell. It's hard to believe these items are hard to find today. One of my favorite gifts as a child, was a tape recorder. Ask someone under 30 if they know what a tape recorder is today and they most likely will have no idea.
As a kid, I would use a small tape recorder to record audio while watching my favorite movies in the theater. I particularly recall doing this during The Goonies. I would listen to the tapes while getting ready for school or doing homework. I knew every line. Too bad I didn't record important information such as history or Spanish lessons. I would have aced my classes!
I think my very first tapes were copied versions of Madonna's first two albums and Cyndi Lauper's She's So Unusual back in sixth grade. My dad was a teacher and one of his students had a massive record collection. He told the student how much I loved Madonna and Cyndi Lauper. Soon I had two new tapes and I bet some had a passing grade. I played those tapes continuously until I believe they finally snapped. That was the one thing that was uncool about tapes. They would get stuck or the tape would unwind from the spool.
As we kids got older, we learned about the romanticism behind the mixed tape. Often a sign of affection, your crush would gather their favorite songs and put together a nice combination of tunes for you on a blank tape. The crush would label the tape and sometimes create artwork, depending on how creative they were. Even the worst song on the tape was lovely because of the person behind the mixed tape. My husband made me CDs in 2001. There are songs that will always remind me of him.
It seems like so long ago when tapes were popular. Now, you may not even be able to play them and don't get me started on records.