New old tapes! Vol. 2 Part 1

30/01/2022

And so suddenly a 3-part magazine with cassette tapes is on the table, at least it has been there for a week or two, but that doesn't count for now. Unpacking and figuring out had to wait until I saw the time to write a suitable blog. Let me start on that today before the houseplant above it starts to overgrow it...

I got the Cassette tapes from an acquaintance. He told me that he bought it in Lebanon at the time. The cassettes come from far away places. We're going to see if this is their final destination, or just a stopover to places unknown. I'll be curious to see what pearls I can possibly find here. For now a thank you to the best knowledge for donating to the 'foundation for the preservation of media materials and playback equipment to be disposed of'.

With a damp cloth I first remove some nostalgic dust from the magazines, in reality there are actually two, a one-piece and two-piece magazine. In total storage space for 108 tapes. Almost all drawers are filled so plenty to sort out! The top is slightly translucent so we already have some view of the contents.

We start with the first drawer, it only contains pre-recorded tapes.

Elvis Presley, ABBA, Kate Bush, Eagles, Westerns, compilation albums and film scores.
Elvis' tapes come in a series, here Volume 3 & 4. Maybe I'll come across 1 and 2 as well.

Let's take a closer look at the tapes

The tapes often look the same. One differs here. The tapes have clear signs of wear, you could also call it 'patina', but it is clear that they have been used without eye for neat rewinding after use. One is halfway, the other completely on side A or B. But my eyes actually first fall on the tape on the right, something strange has happened to it. Something that my acquaintance already talked about with some humor. The known flaws of the infamous cassette...

It can sometimes surprise me how a cassette like this has ended up in such a state. Probably the player has been the culprit here. In any case, it can be called a good locker. MORE STARS ON 45 is written in block letters. An explanation for the reader: 45 stands for the speed of a 'single', a small vinyl record with often one number per side. In short, a compilation album with all kinds of songs and artists. I'll take a look at the contents of the tape

I have mixed feelings about this, because guys these are good songs! At least in my opinion. But what a sad moment that this cassette is in such a bad shape. Nevertheless, I will definitely try to get it running again. With a bit of luck, the damage can still be seen. The other advantage is that the cassette is screwed shut and not glued, so I opened it in no time. Another detail that stands out is the double listing of the song 'Papa was a Rolling Stone'. I also see this on the sticker of the tape, probably a mistake. I'll keep an eye on it while playing. For now I'm putting it aside because there's still plenty of material to look at.

Another tape has a similar defect. The tape is in a place where it shouldn't be, could the same player be behind this? I recognize most artists but the songs are (still) unknown to me. Definitely worth patching up and testing it. Moreover, the sticker is still in remarkably good condition! Which gives me the idea that this tape has jammed quite early after purchase and has not come out of the box after that.

I grab the Eagles tape and have to look it up because I don't know if we're watching 'The Eagles' here or a cassette of the same name. But it is indeed the same. I must confess that the song 'Hotel California' is the only song by the Eagles that I really know. I may know more but not by name.

The case already looked a bit weathered, the metal plate on the inside tells me more. Moisture...
Still the tape seems to be in good shape, at least I don't see any mold on the tape itself.

If the tape is still playable, it would be a great opportunity to get to know the Eagles better!

What I did find out in the meantime is the origin of the name, the bandmembers where simply high on cannabis while outside when an eagle flew over and since they wanted a similar name to The Beatles, the choice was made with that. Besides, you don't say 'The' when you mention the Eagles. At least this is what I found on the Internet, and you know what moms and dads always say: Don't believe anything you read on the Internet (as mine said so about television).
This would also mean that you shouldn't believe anything I say, so yeah. On to the next tape...

Kate Bush is no stranger to me, we put the card in the spotlight for a moment. The cover is striking, because it was clearly intended to be shown on a square sleeve, that of an LP. Of course, this is not the case with the rectangular case of a tape. The album is from September 1980. The cassette had been there for a while anyway. A bit of a shame because the image is full of details. Finally, I have to confess again, the names of the songs are not familiar to me, but perhaps I recognize some of them that are mentioned here.

'The Platinum Album 2' is written in graceful letters, but the cassette inside says something completely different...
The cover refers to another compilation album with presumably platinum-selling songs.
Olivia still Physical don't tell me anything. Maybe I'll come across the accompanying cassette and box later.
For a moment I look at the numbers on the tape 'The promise'. Then I think 'Remember the promise you made' but no, that is an almost eponymous song by Cock Robin. In short, I don't know the artist and the album, the B-side also has no well-known songs for me...

Before I start on the second drawer, one more striking detail. The security lugs are still present on all tapes. Could this just be convenience? Or is this a piece of quality service where the owner could reuse the tape for new recordings? I suspect the first...


On to the second drawer, it is completely filled. Part of the same publisher but also of others.



We put them side by side for a better overview.

Again a number of compilation albums and various well-known artists.
We'll take a closer look at most of them.

Fortunately, in this case, no tape is visibly damaged. But what cannot be seen can, of course, still be expressed during playback.

If I hadn't looked it up, I would have gotten the conformation after all, 'Hotel California' graces the top of this band's playlist. A live album from the Eagles. Both these and many other stickers on the tapes themselves have seen better days. I may be able to re-stick the stickers provided they can be peeled off in one piece.

*COPYING OF THIS TAPE IS PROHIBITED (copying this tape is prohibited). Today you'd be crazy to do it. After all, you can listen to everything for free via a streaming service. Of course, this was not the case in the past. But then again, how were they ever going to check this? I can already see them going through every household to listen in detail to the owner's collection of music cassettes in search of an illegal copy. Moreover, it was even provoked somewhere if you put on the market Cassette decks where you can put two tapes in at the same time to copy one to the other...

The cassette itself is a compilation album by Neil Diamond with his 20 best songs. The box has taken a big hit and has not come out unscaved, miraculously the hinges of the door are still intact!

ABBA Greatest Hits Vol. 2. I grab a DCC cassette from ABBA. You could call the DCC a Long Play with 19 numbers against the 14 on the Cassette tape. Still, there are some songs on the tape that you won't find on the DCC.

The DCC is also a 2-part edition, the first one is shown in the photo. Perhaps I will also find Volume 1 of the Cassette Tape.

The price sticker is still on the DCC box, but it is certainly not empty. The small 40 Gulden is, however, a hefty price for the time. Converted to 2022, this band costs only €17. Given the sticker, I strongly suspect that the DCC comes from de Vroom & Dreesman, but I'm not sure. Do I have to take the sticker off? After all, there is something nostalgic about it, but on the other hand it can also be disturbing. I'll leave it in the middle for now and move on to the next tape.

We are going to discuss the tapes in pairs from now on otherwise it will be a very big bite to read. 'Sentimental Favorites Vol. 4' and 'Champagne And Roses' Two compilation albums with music related to a subject to which a lot of music is focused. We are of course talking about love here, it is easy to make music about this as almost everyone can recognize themselves in it. There is actually so much music about love that I would almost hate it. Not because of my love story, but it is noticeable that a lot of music with a fast earning model has love as its subject.

Alright, enough about my distaste for the combination of the two, if I had to name a love song that would touch me, then listen to 10CC's 'Food for Thought'. Although 10CC is also on the cassette 'Champagne And Roses', it is a pity that the aforementioned song is not on the spot there, after all they sing a bit about Champagne...

The Platinum Album, Greatest Hits, Stars on 45, and now Super World Hits Vol 17, you can't come up with enough appropriate titles for compilation albums, as long as they're catchy. To be honest, I know very few of them that are mentioned on this tape. It is therefore volume 17 so chances are that you have had the real best. I'm afraid this collection is not complete, but maybe I'll come across some of these volumes...

20 Golden Melodies follows with Famous Truck Songs, I'm not a truck driver but I understand the choice here given the previous owner is. Otherwise, I think the gold shiny title is very well done!

Look at that! The Platinum Album 3! And this time also with the accompanying tape, now volume 1 and the correct tape of 2 to complete this collection. There are also some good songs on it.

Also 'Disco Nites'. This one is filled with funky disco hits or something along those lines. I'm starting to wonder how many of the cassettes actually play well. There is a good chance that there are some that cannot be saved.

We close drawer two with U2 and The Jacksons Live, I'm not unfamiliar with U2 but not all the songs on this album sound familiar to me. The Jacksons Live does have a few that I know, but there is one that has more meaning to me.

'Can You Feel It' is my first favorite song! I remember when I was a little kid in the car I couldn't sit still when this song was playing on the radio. But at the same time I don't care much for The Jacksons and not at all with Michael Jackson himself. I admit, his music is certainly not bad and I believe he was a real perfectionist. But something makes it so that I can't stand the man, probably because of everything that's happened over the years. Whether it's true or fables, I'll have to leave it up to you. But the aforementioned song is the only one in my collection of digital music. Still, I think I'll keep this tape, provided it sounds a bit good of course.


Tray 3. Another well-stocked one. Here we also find the first unpre-recorded tape in this collection.



Another new collection of tapes to express my opinion on. But since I'm at a third of the collection with this drawer, we go through it a little faster.

Super HITS#. Volume 1, 2 and.... 2? yes ok. Something probably went wrong here. I check both Volume 2's but indeed they are the same tapes. I see a missed opportunity here to finally complete a collection...

When I look into the cover of Volume 1, something strikes me that makes me question something I wrote about earlier.
'Stars on 45' So it seems that the tape from the first drawer (of which the tape had come out of the reel) is not a compilation album of miscellaneous items, but covers made by the band Stars on 45... I have to do this look it up on the big web.

But again I'm wrong, it's not a band per se, but rather a studio project, where a Medley/Potpourri (merging songs) is made of well-known international songs. The concept has been around for a long time as I have often seen the name Potpourri on old shellac records.

In short, this means that the aforementioned cassette is actually full of covers of well-known songs that have been mixed up like a stew. I actually feel a little bit cheated now that I found out...

I'm keeping volume 1 and 2 side by side here, the songs don't look familiar to me, maybe you know some of them?

The Best of, Rock 1981 Vol. 2 and Big Hits [High Tide and Green Grass] The Rolling Stones.

The first cover notices that the playlists are on the very short side, there are not even 10 songs on this cassette, surely there must have been more rock that would fit on this collection? The Rolling Stones' cassette contains interesting songs, it is a compilation album by the way, even the first to be released. In 1966 to be precise. The only strange thing is the order, this is the UK version of the playlist, but in this case side A and B are reversed. So you should first listen to side B and then side A to keep the correct playback order, in the end it really doesn't matter in what order you want to listen to it. As long as you enjoy...

Fleetwood MacLive Vol. 2 and Electric Light Orchestra with Discovery, two albums that are definitely worth preserving, I have their better known albums from both cassettes on vinyl, nice to be able to add these two cassettes to the collection.

SHUT UP & SING is written in block letters on the cover, you probably have not noticed that I like a bit of humor, I think the caption on this tape is hilarious. The publisher 'Some Southern People' also keeps it simple and clear.

When looking at the inside I conclude that it is a cassette of Dutch descent. I see a number of Dutch names and secretly wonder, are Dirk-Jan and Frank related to our former Dutch Prime Minister by any chance?...

The BASF tape is secretly a kind of pre-recorded tape and actually not intended for private use, but for use in commercial purposes as background music. This is also explicitly described on the yellow pamphlet that comes with it. Lending or renting is prohibited.

In that case I am now forced to set up my own business in order to be able to listen to the tape there, I must first ask Buma for permission, otherwise there may be a hefty fine hanging over my head. The only detail I'm missing is information about Dolby noise reduction, maybe I should ask "Music Center" this question in a letter, luckily I don't need a stamp!

This brings us to the end of the third drawer, and I also decide to close part 1 of this 3-part blog.

Below is the link to Part 2.