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A look at my homemade cassette tapes

Currently Feeling: creative

Mable from Gravity Falls is awesome
Currently Listening:Layering Shiny Dust - Windows96

I've talked a few places before about how I really like to collect physical media, and one of those types of physical media is cassette tapes. I have a lot of nostalgia wrapped up in these little magnetic records because as a kid, I wasn't really allowed to buy popular music. The reason for why is another story for another time, but the restriction made me learn how to make my own tapes, which I did using a little black Citizen cassette player with a radio, and I recorded all of my favorite pop songs late at night when I wasn't able to sleep. I wish I still had that mix tape today, although my tastes in music have changed since then. Instead, I've scratched that itch by making new mix tapes using music that I feel best belongs on the medium.

A group of my home-made cassettes: from top left to bottom, WaveRace64 soundtrack, Pilotwings64 soundtrack, Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of time soundtrack, Super Mario 64 soundtrack, Ghostly Swim Vol. 1 bootleg, Warm Cup of Tea mixtape, Kalax self-named album bootleg, Sims Favorites mixtape, Floral Shoppe bootleg, Sleepercatcher bootleg. Also bonus cat.

I don't have any clear-cut criteria for this, really, it's just based on my own gut feelings, really. I've always really loved making playlists, so choosing a theme or mood, finding the right songs, and then cutting them down so everything will fit, is a really fun task that leaves me with something special afterwards. If you'd like to see what I've made, click below to read the rest of the post.

My absolute favorite is a calm little mixtape that I call "Warm cup of tea." The description I put on the inside of the J-card outlines it best:

"A rainy day. A warm beverage. Your favorite sweater and a snoozing cat nearby.

This is the soundtrack to your moment of peace."

Photo of the case and tape separately
Photo of the J-card by itself

I have fallen asleep to this tape many times.

I wanted to put together a Youtube playlist for this one, but it includes some tracks that aren't available there, so I'm just going to list separate links for each of them:

Side A

9 PM - Animal Crossing (GC)
Gymnopedie no.1 - Eric Satie
Heaven on Earth - Winter Took His Life (second track)
Cleansing River - Sound and Voice
We Will Burn - Bjorn Kleinheinz (third track)
After Afternoon - Sound and Voice
I don't see the branches, I see the tress - Chris Zabriskie
Cosmos (Explore) - Ben Prunty
Are You There - Planet Boelex

Side B

Mud - Kram Geofferson
Fusion of the Four Elements - Michael Hedges
Hero Giraffe - J.J. Ipsen
Toadstool Bookshop - Covered Bridges
Current - Kram Geofferson
Contrary Wind - Covered Bridges
Small Hands Make Big Things - Jim Guthrie and J.J. Ipsen
Snow Sand Angels - Covered Bridges
Dream. Build. Repeat - Jim Guthrie and J.J. Ipsen/a>
Gap Mountain - Covered Bridges
Without a Sound - Gretchen Parlato

Link to the JCard if you want to make your own: Warm Cup Of Tea J-Card

The next one is a collection of my favorite music from the Sims 1. I wasn't able to fit all of them on here because of length of the tape, but I enjoy the tape anyway. I had a lot of fun designing the J-card and making it as 90's as possible in terms of design.

Photos of the A side of the cassette tape and the front of the case
Photos of the B side of the cassette tape and the back of the case

Side A

Neighborhood Music 1
Neighborhood Music 2
Hot Date Downtown Jazz 1
Hot Date Downtown Jazz 2
Hot Date Downtown Jazz 3

Side B

Hot Date Downtown Jazz 4
Hot Date Downtown Jazz 5
Build Mode Piano Music (playlist)

Link to the JCard: The Sims Favorites

Ghostly Swim Bootleg

Ghostly Swim Vol.1 was a collection of the music that used to play on the bumper cards between Adult Swim cartoons on Cartoon Network. It was originally released on vinyl here, but good luck finding one of those now. I felt because of the album's weirdness it really deserved to be on cassette tape, so I reworked the album artwork and made it into a J-card. You can still purchase a digital version of the album using the link above, or you can download it for free from the original Adult Swim website here:

Front of the cassette case with the tape and its matching front sticker
Back of the cassette case with the tape and its matching back sticker

Here's a copy of the album on Youtube:
Ghostly Swim (full album)

Link to the J-card: Ghostly Swim J-card

Various other bootlegs

The following albums were originally released on tape, but I was unable to get them, so I created my own. I'll link to the albums where I can in case you want to buy digital versions of them yourself.

My bootleg of Kalax's self-titled album
This one has two short albums that I was able to mash onto one tape. The first is my favorite of Kalax's albums. It's an amazing synthwave ride that puts me in a wonderfully bittersweet headspace.
Kalax by Kalax
The second is Cloud Battalion's Storm City EP, which I love so freaking much I never get tired of it. Pure 80's synthwave vibes.
Storm City EP - Cloud Battalion

My Floral Shoppe bootleg
Man, good luck finding a physical version of this anywhere. In fact, good luck finding a digital version of this anywhere either, since it keeps getting taken off the internet over and over again. But if you're into vaporwave, you've probably heard of this one, because it's the album that started the genre. Obviously I needed to make my own copy.
Floral Shoppe by Vektroid - it's up on the artist's Bandcamp as of the time of this post.

There are a few others I have pictured above that I will go into in a separate post, because this one is dragging on a little bit. But hopefully you've found some neat new music, or been inspired!


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mishi on :

Oh no😮 I thought I commented on this a while back, but maybe it didn't go through.

This is one of the most interesting little DIY projects I've seen in a while. Functional and so aesthetically pleasing!📻

Bekah on :

You know, I could have sworn you did too, and it's possible that your comment may have been purged while tuning my spam filters @_@

I'll keep a closer eye on it in the future!

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