Listen to Muzak for airplanes (1960s)

Last century, the Muzak company created custom mixes of soft music for locations ranging from doctor's office waiting rooms and restaurants to barber shops and, yes, elevators. Muzak were self-proclaimed "specialists in the physiological and psychological applications of music." Two decades before Brian Eno riffed on this environmental music concept with his phenomenal "Music for Airports" (below), Muzak provided music for airplanes in the form of reel-to-reel mix tapes played on United Airlines flights. Above is one such collection. Fly the friendly skies.

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Vintage video of an 8-track tape swap meet

This footage was shot in 1991 but it could easily be today. From Gary Broyhill's YouTube post:

Fans of the endless loop cartridge met at Delilah's in Chicago to trade tapes (no selling!) and talk shop. Interview with Russ Forster, editor of 8-Track Mind magazine and director of the 8-track film "So Wrong They're Right.'

Want more? Fast-forward your way to 8-Track Heaven Read the rest

The beauty of blank VHS tape covers

There was something special about the perfectly-dimensioned, shrinkwrapped new VHS tape. Overlarge yet empty, a blank canvas in a new age of copying video. And now, a decade or three later, a perfect mote of nostalgia.

Previously: VHS Camcorder app makes iPhone video look like 1980s tape Read the rest

Mannheim Steamroller Christmas, a freaked-out ambient tape loop remix

Magnetic tape maestro Randall Taylor, aka Amulets, takes an old Mannheim Steamroller Christmas cassette in a totally different direction... a totally different dimension.

Just when you thought you were going to listen to some sweet christmas music it turns into a weird 7 minute ambient drone rework that no one wants to hear at your family/work/friendmas/holiday party! Give the gift of your obscure musical taste and Mannheim Steamroll your loved ones today!

GEAR USED: - Custom Tape Loops - Tascam Porta 02 - Library of Congress Tape Player - Memorex Walkman - Behringer Micromix - AC Noises AMA - Strymon Blue Sky

Support and follow Amulets on Patreon.

Previously: "Spectacular 'Ambient Walkman Symphony' and other tape-loop, circuit bent performances" Read the rest

Spectacular "Ambient Walkman Symphony" and other tape-loop, circuit bent performances

Portland-based musician Randall Taylor, aka Amulets, creates gorgeous experimental music performances from modded Walkmans and old multitrack cassette decks playing handcrafted tape loops, live guitar loops processed through circuit-bent pedals, field recordings and other sound sources. He calls his portable setup, featured in the video below, the Suitcase of Drone. Absolutely stunning work.

From Austin's Dimension Gallery where Amulets created a sound installation that runs until August 14:

(Taylor's) current body of work under the moniker Amulets expresses his interest in the intersection between visual art and music. His physical cassette tape loops are like mini musical canvases. They create sonic tapestries in his mechanically performative installations. Using recycled tapes and players, he simultaneously fuses music, recycling, art, and nostalgia.

Amulets (Thanks, John Park!)

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Reel to reel tape in a standard mini-cassette

Teac briefly sold a standard tape cassette that opened to allow the listener to swap out its tiny little reels. This made for an ultracompact music collection--dozens of albums in a pocketable pouch--but it didn't take off.

A look at an unusual cross between an open reel tape and the compact cassette. As far as I know the O'Casse was only available in Japan. - you can usually them on ebay (at great expense) alongside the brilliant Sony WM-D6C Walkman

It's interesting just how many ways they tried to get performance and professional-grade utility out of this trash-ass media format and I'm so glad it's back in fashion. Read the rest

Newt Gingrich admits Trump lied about taping Comey

Ethically challenged former US Congressperson Newt Gingrich has proclaimed Donald Trump a liar. Gingrich claims there are no tapes of Trump strong-arming former FBI Director James Comey, it was an uncalculated bluff.

President Trump is supposed to reveal this week, six weeks after making the initial suggestion, whether he actually has tapes of his White House conversations. Trump last month wielded those potential tapes as a very thinly veiled threat against former FBI director James B. Comey. And ever since then, he and the White House have decided to withhold the truth from the American people, refusing to answer a simple yes-or-no question.

But Newt Gingrich just gave away the game, for all intents and purposes. In an interview with the Associated Press, the Trump-backing former House speaker basically admits that Trump was just bluffing to try to get inside Comey's head.

“I think he was in his way instinctively trying to rattle Comey,” Gingrich said. “He's not a professional politician. He doesn't come back and think about Nixon and Watergate. His instinct is: 'I'll outbluff you.'”

Apparently not being a “professional politician” is a license for dishonesty.

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Incredible gallery of C-90 cassette tapes is a thing of wonder, not least for the Catalogue of Tapes, each lovingly photographed and organized by brand.

This page is dedicated to cassette tapes. Here you won't find any kind of scientific research, technical data or things like that. The authors' only message is just to give a visitor something interesting to look at. The era of this particular medium is slowly passing, and here we are trying to turn back time for 60 minutes, or, maybe, for 90...

Pictured above is the Sony C-1C Head Cleaner. Sadly, the image sizes are rather small. Read the rest