Of all the social engagements that we have throughout our lives, music is a constant. No matter the genre you listen to, that music is a reflection of you in some way. Sometimes it’s the lyrics that speak to you or describe the battle you are entrenched in with your life, or it’s the culture and feeling that you get when you go and see the music live. Regardless of how you describe what music is to you, it is a huge part of who you are. This is particularly important when it comes to your social interaction. When you give someone some music that you enjoy, you are saying “hey, here is a part of me that I want you to have.”
If you’re 25 years of age or older, you can probably remember the cassette tape. A seemingly innocuous piece of plastic and ribbon that held so many stories for so many people. Maybe Dick made Jane a love mix for their first anniversary, or Todd and Jim made a mixed tape for their epic road trip to The Gorge to see their favorite group play. In each instance, every person who made a mixed tape spent serious amounts of time putting them together. We remember spending hours listening to the radio, waiting forour favorite songs to come on the radio and to hit record at the exact right moment. These were the days when piracy was analog . But nowadays, you just don’t get that handmade feel in the digital age.
Sure, you can go on Spotify and compose a playlist for a specific person and even publish your playlist for all to hear. We just made one in ten minutes with 25 songs. We are not denying that there is some level of care that goes into making that playlist and we are certainly not denying the thoughtfulness of creating it. But, it seems as if a piece of the “homemade” portion is gone, making the gift less personal. Take a couple of chairs for example. Both of these chairs are identical in every way. They are the same height, the same length, and are equally as comfortable. One has been handmade by your friend for you and the other was bought at a store, where it was manufactured on an assembly line. Which one of those chairs do you find more valuable?
We might seem like an old man telling the kids to get off the grass here, but we do have a sense of nostalgia for those little tokens that made so many feel so great. Are we wrong about the value of digital mixed tapes versus the analog ones? Tell us in the comments below.
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