From the time I was in second grade and learned how to push the RECORD and PLAY buttons at the same time on my mama’s portable tape recorder that had all the sleek styling of a 1976 GoodTimes Van, I have been a fan of the mix tape. For a seven-year-old in love there is nothing sweeter than listening to REO Speedwagon launch into “Take It On the Run” while a DJ continues to talk in the background.
Bonus points if you were ever able to time your mix tape recording skills with the moment the DJ actually announced your song dedication on the radio. That takes a special brand of dedication and skill possessed only by fifth grade girls with a lot of time and Doritos on their hands. And also parents who had a master bedroom downstairs and couldn’t hear that we were still up and calling local radio stations after midnight.
In the early days, mix tape perfection was achieved if I managed to get some combination of these five songs with minimal DJ interruption.
1. “Open Arms” by Journey
2. “Keep on Loving You” by REO Speedwagon
3. “Kiss on My List” by Hall and Oates
4. “Jessie’s Girl” by Rick Springfield (Oh Rick Springfield, I loved you most of all)
5. “Endless Love” by Diana Ross (To this day I have never seen the movie because clearly my mother wanted to ruin my life in 1981 and deprive me of everything Brooke Shields)
There was really no better music to listen to while spending an evening with friends as you all decorated your bookcovers with paint pens and took turns calling various boys to find out who they liked or maybe just to hang up them for the tenth time in the night. (Caller ID has spoiled all the fun for this generation)
In later years, my musical taste became more sophisticated and I preferred the song stylings of Tiffany (“I Think We’re Alone Now”) and Madonna (“Material Girl”).
And even in college, Gulley and I would occasionally make ourselves the best mix tape of all time (Bell Biv Devoe, Kid N Play, MC Hammer, and Dee-Lite to name just a few) to listen to while we got ready to go out. That’s right. I was in college when cassette tapes still ruled the world. In fact, my York stereo with its dual cassette player was perfect for making multiple copies of the best mix tapes to distribute to various friends. (I tried to ignore the fact that it also had an 8-track player)
We couldn’t have imagined the riches of iTunes. For that matter we couldn’t have imagined that one day everyone would own any technology more sophisticated than a Brother Word Processor. Music on a computer? That’s pure madness.
It makes my heart happy that my child is growing up in an age where she can have any song at her fingertips (ear tips?) in mere seconds. She will never have to spend her childhood listening to a DJ play “Whip It” by Devo a hundred times when all she really wants to do is record “Our Lips Are Sealed” on her super-cool mix tape.
God bless America. It really is the land of opportunity.
Anyway, the reason I’ve rambled endlessly is because the other day Caroline wanted to hear “Sweet Caroline” and I couldn’t find the mix CD (old habits die hard) that has that song on it. I suggested that when we got home we could sit down, listen to music and she could make her very own mix of songs that I’d burn to a CD for her. She is her mother’s daughter because no words can describe her delight at the power of creating her very own playlist. MUSIC IS POWER. Or whatever.
She immediately knew what songs she wanted on her CD. The following is her list:
1. “Our Song” – Taylor Swift
2. “I Like To Move It” – Will.i.am
3. “Little Drummer Boy” – Jars of Clay
4. “Sweet Caroline” – Neil Diamond
5. “Mama Tried” – Merle Haggard
6. “Walkin’ After Midnight” – Patsy Cline
7. “Every Move I Make” – Worship Jamz (the z makes it edgy)
8. “Big and Chunky” – Will.i.am
9. “Gonna Make You Sweat” – C&C Music Factory
10. “Redneck Girl” – The Bellamy Brothers
11. “Groove is in the Heart” – Dee-Lite
12. “Happy Song” – Chris Tomlin
13. “Ghostbusters” – Kidz Bop Kids (again with the z because marketers are savvy)
14. “I Missed the Bus” – Kriss Kross
15. “Batman Theme” – The Marketts
16. “Boondocks” – Little Big Town
While I question her selection of “Little Drummer Boy” for year-round listening, I applaud her love of Merle Haggard, Patsy Cline and Kriss Kross. Clearly, we are raising her right. Because what kind of world would this be if there was no one to appreciate kids who possess the fortitude to rap while wearing their clothes backwards?
A sad one.
(Although the question was meant to be rhetorical, I felt the need to insert the obvious answer)
The only problem is we haven’t been able to actually burn her list to a CD because the CD burning feature on my Macbook appears to be flat busted. Apparently when the nice folks at the Genius Bar replaced my bunk keyboard they replaced it with a bunk CD burner. Dang.
So now I’m going to have to schedule an appointment to let them look at it and you just know they’re going to want to keep it for a few days which makes me sweat just thinking about it.
The worst part is I can’t even make a good mix CD to listen to while I drive to the Apple Store.
Sometimes I think life with cassette tapes was easier.
Except for the times when my York stereo cassette player decided to eat one. I still can’t think about the tragedy that befell Def Leppard “Pyromania” without getting a tear in my eye.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on what constitutes the perfect mix tape present or past. I bet it doesn’t include “Ghostbusters” by Kidz Bop Kids.
Texas in Africa
That is the funniest stinkin playlist ever! Who’d’ve thought that will.i.am would flow well into Jars of Clay?!?
I love, love, LOVE that Caroline has a mix cd. I gave those up in favor of my Ipod, but that is must a more technologically savvy way to create your own personal mix.
I might recommend Josh Groban’s Little Drummer Boy for year round listening. It is fantastic. My 8th graders requested it every morning for a while last year.
I also tried to get my son hooked on “I like to move it.” I sang it to him thinking it would get him, well.. moving. It didn’t. He cried. 🙂 He prefers Life in a Northern Town and Already Gone by Sugarland. There’s no accounting for taste.
my college roomate and i had a hypothetical mix tape that THE boy would make for us ONE DAY. THE boy would just KNOW what songs to put on there (selections had to include elton john’s your song and peter gabriel’s in your eyes)without us telling him. roomate and i decided this might be a little daunting even for THE boy (still hypothetical, of course) so we agreed that we could tell each other’s THE boy but not our own. because that would ruin the perfectness of THE boy.
each of us found THE boy and neither boy made any kind of mix tape or even cd. it’s a painful shortcoming but love can conquer all.
You basically put me in a time warp machine with the references to those songs….thanks for the great experience!
REO Speedwagon’s “Keep on Loving You” wow… How many girls at the Jr. High dance cried on the bleachers when that came on???
And then I blasted forward to the days where all those black rubber bracelets got tangled up in my hair as I got my Maddona on with Material Girl.
ahhhhhhhh, good times. good times.
I have loved Walking After Midnight by Patsy Cline since I was Caroline’s age…it delighted me to no end to see it on her playlist!
It is quite the eclectic playlist but just think…. there will never be boredom with that cd as it has a little bit of everything!
I love this post. My husband and I are 4 years apart, so when songs come on I scream, “8th grade!!!” and he frowns and says,”Senior year.” My time reference is all about the music that was big that year. How many tape mixes did I make? endless. My oldest kid does have a shuffle, but she still loves tape players and fooling around with them.
I can relate totally! I even somehow strapped my Panasonic cassette player to my bike so I could sing along to REO as I cruised all the country roads. And despite my dad yelling for me to quit pushing those buttons (play-rewind-play a million times, trying to learn Journey lyrics and sing like Steve Perry–not easy!) that Panasonic lasted forever! But now, Ipod, I love you.
I can so relate to you on the one…I still have all those old tapes that I stayed up too late waiting to be played on the radio, those special dedications…my voice sounds so little UGH!
AND…our CD burner is busted as well…my girls have been wanting their own CD mix for over a month…sad day…their list contains many AWANA worship songs that are quite CRAZY! but my favorite has got to be Hump-ty Dump…(that doesn’t qualify as worship, but MAN they can dance!!!)
OH BIG MAMA,
You have whisked me back to the lazy days of summer of yore when all the neighborhood kids had the same summer plans…play outside all day and break only for dinner. My folks had a cassette player with a MICROPHONE so us kids not only created awesome mix tapes from KS95, but we could also sprinkle in our own jokes and commentary. Priceless. Whenever I hear these fantastic summer mix tape standards, I instinctively crave popsicles and whine that it’s my turn at the mic…
Love is in the Air by John Paul Young
I’m Still Standing by Elton John
Wrapped Around Your Finger by The Police
We May Never Pass This Way Again by Seals and Croft
Wildfire by Michael Martin Murphy
Rock the Boat by the Hues Corporation
Diamond Girl by Seals and Croft
Tomorrow is the last day of school. Tonight I really need to stock up on some terry cloth rompers, clunky sandals, sunscreen, bubbles, popsicles, and some 60 minute cassettes.
Your comment about questioning Caroline’s selection of “Little Drummer Boy” for year-round listening makes me smile. My daughter and I spent last weekend in your city of San Antonio. It was with great joy that my daughter found 106.7 Santa on the radio! We listened to Christmas music all weekend long because every day should feel like Christmas!
We have a mix CD like that at our house that we absolutely love. It gets us movin’ when we all clean the house or just need an hour to dance!
If you haven’t heard the rap version of “Kung-Fu Fighting”, it’s a MUST! We also love “Last Dance” by Donna Summer and that Alvin and the Chipmunks song… I think it’s “Like a Chipmunk”… I’m going to check out some of yours to add to our playlist!
I am laughing out loud, because I also have my mixed tapes from college! Of course, I also remember that we all got an email account through the university my junior year, but no one really used it because what in the world was it??? I still actually WROTE letters! All back in 1995! Craziness…
OMGosh! My 7 year old has Little Drummer Boy on her ipod shuffle. Along with the theme to Pink Panther.
I was one of the talented ones who learnt the trick – the exact moment to push the record button, just as the DJ finished introducing the song. Oh yes. I was hot stuff. Not like my friend, who’s mix tapes often started with Shania’s That Don’t Impress Me Much (we were born late 80s, grew up in the 90s) about halfway through the actual song.
I feel you should be more concerned about “Mama Tried”…
Oh my gosh, the memories! In middle school, my perfect mix tape would have included “Endless Love” by Lionel Richie and Diana Ross and “At This Moment” by Billy Vera and the Beaters. Oh, how those two songs could make me swoon! I also can’t forget “Open Arms” by Journey. I was so enraptured by them that I ALMOST signed up to playing the piano and singing that song at the 8th grade talent show. God intervened and reminded me that of my intense fear of public performing and that my singing draws less than stellar reviews and saved me from carrying around the memory of what surely would have been a disaster!
Ah, sweet memories…
Well, growing up in a communist thrird world country as conservative christians I had no choice but to listen to…the birds outside and choir at church. Buuuut, when we came to the US I did get my hands on a Roxette tape at a Goodwill and even though I had NO clue what the frosted blonde was singing about I did memorize every line of every song. To this day I sing my heart out if “Must Have Been Love” randomly comes on the radio.
But I must say, Caroline’s mix is pretty darn impressive. And I have to applaud you for not introducing her to Carmen. “…Satan, bite the dust!…” You’re right, old habits die hard. I can’t believe I just admitted that I used to listen to a middle aged man who died his hair black, shaved his chest, tanned and sang about Jesus. Amen.
Oh I so miss the days of mixed tapes! I was on the tail end, but I remember when Celine Dion’s “Because You Loved Me” was a hit (summer of 6th grade) and it so reminded me of my nonexistent relationship with a certain bad boy named Kenny. I waited by the radio until it came on and happily recorded it on my “jam box.” Dear Lord, the sweet days of innocence…
By the way…Caroline’s taste in music is fabulous…obviously she’s a country girl through and through if she’s already familiar with the Bellamy Brothers. Good job!
Well, I tell ya, my 10 year old has pretty great taste, in my opinion. His MP3 player has Prince’s Greatests Hits, some Metallica, a little Megadeth, Creedence Clearwater, Johnny Cash’s Ghostrider in the Sky, The Highwayman, Meatloaf, and a little Queen.
My mixes always included Lionel Richie and Cindy Lauper too!
Does she like the Madagascar movies? “Big and Chunky” is a winner in our house just because of that movie.
I was also quite good at starting my cassette recorder at just the right moment.
I love love love iTunes. I can be shopping and hear a song I loved from, gulp, 40 some years ago and go home and buy it on iTunes.
I can not believe that caroline knows Kris Kros. You are def. teaching her the important things in life!
I would agree with an above commenter…a little Queen and she’d be set! She has Big and Chunky…she needs to learn the roots with Fat Bottom Girls. But then the Women’s Lib movement might tell me that I will give my daughter weight issues. Oh well, I still can’t get enough of it.
Her list rocks! I’m ashamed I haven’t introduced my 5 year old to some of these songs but she does LOSE HER MIND over when she hears…”Everybody Dance Now” duh, duh duh duh…LOL!
That is so funny. My sisters and I use to make our own cassette tapes from the radio and we would always wind up getting a little bit of the dj in with the songs! I know I had one with Bon Jovi, Journey, and Chicago but I can’t remember all of the songs. I remember blaring them in the car…windows down, hair flying in the wind..it was great!
My mix tape would have to include “One of These Nights” by the Eagles- does that age me??? (I am 47- I think that song came out in like 1973….)
Over the past few months I’ve been compiling a playlist for my upcoming milestone birthday.
I picked songs that in general just make me feel good or that I remember fondly for one reason or another. I did have to take into consideration that I would like people to carry on conversations at the party so I had to leave off a few artists such as: The Sex Pistols, Pink, and AC/DC. Here are the artists I did select:
ABBA, Ace of Base, The Ataris, Barenaked Ladies, The Beatles, Berlin, Captain & Tennille, The Carpenters, Cheap Trick, Coldplay, The Cranberries, Damn Yankees, David Bowie, Dexy’s Midnight Runners (please no judging!), Duran Duran, Elton John, Finger Eleven, Foreigner, The Fray, George Harrison, George Michael, Gloria Gaynor, Goo Goo Dolls, Green Day, Hoobastank, Hot Chocolate, Huey Lewis & The News, Ingrid Michaelson, Jason Mraz, Kelly Clarkson, Lifehouse, Madness, Matchbox Twenty, Michelle Branch, Natalie Imbruglia, Natasha Bedingfield, No Doubt, Olivia Newton-John, Peter Gabriel, Phil Collins, The Police, Prince, The Proclaimers, Queen, Rick Springfield, Snow Patrol, Spandau Ballet (still no judging!), Squeeze, Steve Winwood, Sting, T’Pau, Talking Heads, The Thompson Twins, U2 (of course), Wallflowers, Whitesnake, and Whitney Houston.
Isn’t iTunes wonderful???
I just have two questions for Phil Collins… Who is this Sussudio girl? And how did she get such and unusual name?
Oh honey….I STILL make a mix CD every summer for the people I used to work with at camp! I’d been a part of that camp since the early 90’s (as staff) and we still keep in touch. So fun!
But the songs from mix tapes of my youth–oh my word. I could go on and on! I too came from the land of making mix TAPES not CD’s. I had a lot of Paula Abdul (minus the drunkeness), Dee Lite, techno dance music, etc. Ahhhh…the early 90’s. God love ’em!
I make playlists all the time, as I am from the mixtape generation. Each playlist I make now has a couple songs from the good ole days…
Todays list includes:
Diamonds and Pearls-Prince
Free Fallin-Tom Petty
Deeper than the Holler-Randy Travis
Thanks for a great post—off to download Kris Kross!
I have just to comment on your love of Rick Springfield. I too loved him with all my heart. Did you know that he now has a Rick Springfield cruise every year you can go on? He’s on the ship with you and gives concerts and everything. Want to go?
Oh, it’s all coming back to me … back to me nowwwwww (is that a SONG?!). Anyway, I was among the 1980s “trying to hit the record button at the right time” girls too! You never mentioned Whitney Houston … come on now! Other than Tiffany and a few other fluff girl singers, I was all about Chicago, Journey, Toto, and REO Speedwagon. I now appreciate the 70s singers too – Merle Haggard, Johnny Cash, Neil Diamond, et all even more though. I’d rather listen to one of them than this new stuff on the radio these days any time!
Oh this did bring back the memories… Sweet sweet memories…
The perfect mix tape has to be categorized. Like all worship music, or Songs That Make You Want to Dance (one of my personal favorites) or The Cleaning Sound tract (which, interestingly enough, contains a lot of the same tunes as Song That Make You Want To Dance, because I love to do the Dyson Dance…) Needless to say, Caroline’s playlist made me twitch just a little bit.
My boom box had a microphone attachment, so I could play my mix tape and pretend to be the D.J. myself, or I could sing along with the music. I was karaoke before karaoke was cool!
Great post…brings back lots of memories.
We could be twins except that I don’t exercise, I have 2 children, and my hair is almost black.
I think our homemade cassette tape mixes were freakishly similar! I can remember the excitement of hearing a favorite song come on the radio, then RUNNING to my set-and-ready-stereo to hit the record button. Good times.
By the way, when I got that 55-lb. record player/DOUBLE cassette player/radio stereo for Christmas when I turned 10, I think the Earth stood still for a moment and a shining light came down from heaven while angels sang in the background. It was perfect. I think that if I had been given a future glimpse of the wonder that is Ipod at that age, I would have passed out from excitement.
I love that she wanted Jars of Clay’s “Little Drummer Boy”! That is my FAVORITE version of that song! She’s not the only one putting Christmas on an everyday CD…I have Joy Williams’s “2000 December’s Ago” on several of my CD’s. I love that song any time during the year. I also remember the mix tape. There was a radio station years ago that played songs by candlelight. Oh the memories…
Okay- hilarious- we are on vacation (apparenlty in 1982) because it is a wealth of 70’s & 80’s music. We’ve heard the Bee Gees, Tiffany, Chicago, more Journey than you can possibly imagine, but the absolute best was this little run of ditties: Andy Gibb (cannot for the life of me remember the song, but I loved it!), The Rose by that woman, and then…wait for it…wait for it… Kenny Rogers singing Through The Years!
The most memorable mix tape I ever got was a post breakup tape from a boy I liked for a few days and then abruptly stopped liking. It was middle school, I think maybe 7th grade. He tried to win me back with a Richard Marx song, “Why does it have to be wrong or right” by someone I don’t remember and “I’m gonna keep on loving y-ou..” (again, I don’t know who sang it), plus about 90 more minute of unrequited love songs. It was very persuasive. I kept the tape and later passed it along to the next boy who liked me for a few days and then abruptly stopped.
My hubby and I were just talking about him flying across the room to hit record and play during the weekly Top 40 countdown at the exact right moment so as to not cut off any part of the song.
He said it never failed that he would be getting a drink or something at the exact time his favorite song would come on.
Thank you for reminding me of the time I held my tape recorder next to the TV just so I could manage to capture Karma Chameleon…I’m embarassed I just admitted that. Now my mix tape tastes are much more refined. My ipod contains the perfect mix of Boondocks, Tis So Sweet to Trust in Jesus, and Let Her Cry…because what ipod is complete without some Hootie?
To this day I remember the order of my mix tape and if I hear the end of one of my songs on the radio, I will start singing the next one on my tape. But its been so long and I would have to hear one to remember what they were.
I went on vacation to a remote lake in Maine with another family when I was 14. My friend recorded the entire top 40 countdown with Casey Kasem the week before on her REEL TO REEL! We listened to it OVER and OVER during that two weeks. I can’t remember how many tapes it took to get the whole thing but I know our favorite tape contained Two out Three by Meatloaf and Stay by Jackson Browne.
This mix tape was part of my childhood/teenagerhood as well, however being a child of the 90s my mix included an unfortunate smattering of various boy bands.
I had totally forgotten about it until reading this post, but my high school boyfriend who lived 6 hours away in Kudzu county Nowhere would make and send me all types of bluegrass mixes that I would listen to and weep shamelessly because he was in Kudzu county and I was 6 hours away where people actually wore shoes. Clearly a relationship fraught with about 9 kinds of WHAT was I thinking?
I should have calluses on my knees from thanking the good Lord I dodged that bullet.
I still make mix CDs too, by the way. It’s a common addiction and if being addicted is wrong I don’t want to be right.
I can remember how THRILLED I was to have my first Walkman and listen to my own cassette tapes, when I was a sophomore in college, in [cough cough] 1982. I don’t listen to music made after about 2002 now. Oldies and NPR rule on my car radio. My kids roll their eyes. I love that. Congrats for raising a child right – she likes Patsy Cline!
Do you know what true love was? When a guy made you a mix tape. It was as good as a ring.
I would have to say the best mix tape/CD for me are the ones I used to make for road trips when my mom and I would take random trips. A mix of old time country along the lines of Fancy and The Night the Lights Went out in Georgia by Reba (before she had a cool hairstlye) and old time rock and roll…and then mix in just enough of new country and new rock/pop/r&b to drive my mom crazy!! Wow, great memories, thanks!
Mary @ Giving Up on Perfect
That playlist cracks me UP! Dee-Lite AND C&C Music Factory? Oh, Caroline, I love you and your taste in music.
I still find myself making lists for mix tapes – or, as the kids are calling them these days, iTunes playlists that I burn on a CD and play over and over in the car. As a matter of fact, I had a slight breakdown last week because I’d been making this list for over a year and then couldn’t find it. I’d just about gotten it right, too.
I remember buying my first CD in high school. I thought it was so strange – why would anyone NOT want a cassette?
Didn’t do mix tapes back then, but am hooked on iTunes, my iPod and my Bose Soundock now. I can spend hours browsing through Imixes and creating playlists. I have 70’s, country, old country, current hits, hard rock, blues, big band, you name it…it’s addictive! I like the music to fit the occasion and the people!!
My husband and I are in a perpetual quest to list our Top Ten songs of all time. Just about the time I get all of mine nailed down, something pops up on the radio that transports me back in time and my list starts all over again!
I must admit, I still have a few mix tapes that my college roommate and I made…wow, what a trip back that is! And I agree, caller ID has spoiled all the fun for kids these days (wow, never thought I’d be old enough to use that line ‘kids these days’!
Caroline has good taste! and I was just thinking, I wasn’t around yet in ’76. ha ha, but my husband was! Although I think you only look 26! Seriously.
Wow, that was great!
I had a friend that was so generous as to give me copies of her mixed tapes that she took so much time to make.
My parents, were not up with the times, and by the time I had a dual cassette player, well, cassette’s were no longer cool. And I never was.
Anyway, my husband would totally be smiling with her choice of both, Redneck Girl, because who doesn’t love a little Bellamy Brothers and of course, obviously, Merle and “Mama Tried”.
Our daughters could totally be friends. Totally.
Caroline has some amazing musical taste. Can she make a playlist for your readers?
I think some “Eye of the Tiger” by Survivor is always a good choice for a mixed CD/tap/playlist.
I do like me some “Rebel Yell” by Billy Idol, although I’m not sure I would bump any Kriss Kross off the list for Billy. That’s just plain madness.
Oh that was good. I can’t wait for Gracie to be a little bit older so we can make her own “mix tape/CD” too.
Your song references have brought back some major memories…
Oh Big Mama! WHAT A RIOT! “Rick Springfield, I loved you the most”. I was in the Rick Springfield fan club. Did I just admit that? Oh, the memories! Love it! I think I saw him at a local summer festival about 6-8 years ago and immediately felt like a giddy little tween again! It was so much fun! Oh, the sweet, sweet ’80’s!!
This post is brilliant! And it gives me so much hope for my three year old girl. My boys just don’t feel the music like we do!
Now, the bunk cd burner begs the question…mp3 player?? The child clearly needs a Shuffle! Why keep up with that bulky stack of discs that scratch. She’ll talk about cds like we do about 8 tracks!
Also, I’m glad I wasn’t in the minority of girls who hung up on boys 10 times in a row! Even now if someone hangs up I say, “he was too scared to talk to me”.
caroline’s playlist is awesome! way to teach her a little bit of everything at such a young age. i could not begin to ramble off a current playlist…too many to choose from! plus, i tend to be the kind of girl who listens to the same song on repeat 20 times before i move onto something else. ha!
also, a few months age i asked for any advice for someone moving to texas…well, we made the move last weekend! i won’t call myself a texas girl just yet, but i am a girl who from here on out will call texas home 🙂
Oh, how I loved the mixed tape. There was an episode of “The New Adventures of Old Christine” a year or two ago that covered these joys.
I have one question though- how does Caroline even KNOW who Kriss Kross is? Surely your local radio station doesn’t play it, since I don’t know, 1993. So is it because you play it often Melanie? 😉 I am pretty sure my husband would never come home if he knew Kriss Kross was playing in his house.
When I was in second grade, the cool girls spend recess making up dances to “Material Girl.” At the time I thought it was “Cereal Girl.”
My favorite part about the college mix tapes were giving them a title. “Rappy, Dancey, Groovy Mix” was one. And of course the more melancoly “I think I am failing out of school and it’s never going to get warm” tape – created during a long Michigan winter at WMU.
The guy who wrote Ghostbusters children go to the school I teach at…i am pretty sure that the Kidz bop version made him a pretty penny…although he might not be able to listen to it =)
I was a Rick Astley fan in college…loved his songs.
When I was Caroline’s age it was Sean Cassidy…oooo he was sooo cool.
Love the mixes…
I love that Merle Haggard and The Bellamy Brothers made her list because I’ve been completely baffled by my 12-year-old son’s love for Jerry Reid and Charlie Daniels. Really? I’m just not thinking either of them qualify as main-stream popular at his middle school!
We still have a couple of old York stereo components laying around the house. Good times.
I think that before you turn that Mac in to be serviced, you should buy Caroline her very own hot pink mp3 player and load it up. You can pick one up for around $25 at Wal-mart. She will be in heaven, and you will be the coolest mom on the block.
Oh, and my mix would include Madonna’s entire Immaculate Collection, alongside James Taylor and Toby Mac. Crazy world where those three collide, huh?
I love that “Redneck Girl” and “Gonna Make You Sweat” are on the same playlist. Also, I know I have a mental deficiency but I have never figured out how to burn anything on a CD without messing it up. I often long for the ease of recording things on my massive black and yellow boom box.
I now have the words “Daddy Mac’ll make ya JUMP! JUMP!” in my head… love her list!
One of my most humiliating life stories involves a mix tape that I gave to a boy the day after we broke up… at school… in front of his friends. Can we say DESPERATE! I can’t remember all the songs, but I know that Pearl Jam was there and I feel certain that, bless his heart, Rick Trevino made an appearance as well. I still live in my small town and I see him from time to time… each time I want to die over that tape.
My girls, 7 & 14, both make playlists and mix CD’s. I was given one for Valentines Day & Mother’s Day, my heart swelled with pride. The older is more moody & emo & dramatic, you never know what’s gonna come up on her playlist/iPod. Katy Perry, Paramour, rap, Metallica, Natalie Grant, you just never know. The younger baby girl adores Carrie Underwood, Tim McGraw, Alan Jackson, Kenny Chesney, & Sugarland. I just introduced her to Cindy Lauper courtesy of AI and she has downloaded virtually every Cindy song she can find. Couple of years ago a summer babysitter introduced them to the Bellamy Bros. Redneck Girl, it’s in constant rotation as is Kenny Chesney’s “Back Where I Come From” and Montgomery Gentry’s “My Town.”
I love mix CDs. I make them for my girls to listen to in their room. They don’t get to choose though. Maybe I should let them. As for the ideal mix list, “Heaven is a Place on Earth” would be on there for sure. I love that song. After that, I have no idea.
Oh my own mix tapes back in the day were a wide variety. Always included The Eagles, The Cure, Depeche Mode, U2, REM, Fleetwood Mac, with Def Leppard, Paula Abdul, The Fresh Prince, Tone Loc, The Clash, the Replacements, Yaz, Sinead O’Connor, UB40, Tom Petty, Prince, the Grateful Dead, RedHotChiliPeppers, and Jimmy Buffet coming up frequently as well. Yah, pretty schizophrenic and eclectic to say the least.
We just had to suffer through a first year piano student play “Open Arms” at an exceedingly lenthy piano recital. EXCRUCIATING!
I don’t know if you guys has Zody’s back there, but that’s were I purchased my very own copy of Pyromania. I was in the 5th grade and let the “boy” borrow it and he put it in his back pocket. OOO was I on a high because “my” cassette tape was in his back pocket. OO good times…
Steph in CA.
Heather (Multiple Hats)
My 9-year-old just had to adjust his “mix” that was on his feaux iPod (read MP3 player that looks amazingly like an iPod shuffle, but is too cheap to actually sync with iTunes). He informed me that he is “so over the Crazy Frog thing, and wants some Toby Keith on there instead”.
Laughing….all the times I waited for Jessie’s Girl & Material Girl on B95!
Btw, someone prank called me the other night and the caller ID said private caller – chicken! I am sure it was not my generation, hopefully! 🙂
Your posts are always so fun to read!
My mix (cassette) tape when I was a kid included Vitamin C, 98°, (the new & upcoming) Britney Spears, TLC, and the like. I think I even had that tape until I graduated high school, and threw it away only because cassette players no longer frequented my presence.
Oh I love the mixed tape days. I remember once when I was in 7th grade sleeping in the hallway for days trying to record 6 feet deep by the Geto Boys. My grandma getting up to get a glass of water put an end to that, but I finally got a decent radio in my room.
My mixed tape play list..
1. 6 feet deep – Geto Boys
2. Lost in you eyes – Debbie Gibson
3. Radio Romance – Tiffany
4. Do Me – Bel Biv Devoe
5. Toy Soldiers – Martika
6. What about Love – Heart
7. Love Shack – B52’s
8. Cradle of Love – Billy Idol
9. Come on Feel the Noise – Quiet Riot
10. Born in the U.S.A – Bruce Springsteen
Wow this was fun!
Ah, the good ole days. You were much better off than I was in the recording department. I had a hand-held cassette recorder and had to hold it up to the radio speaker to record, all the while praying no one would walk in or make noise while in the “studio”.
And don’t get me started on the perils of recording one speaker and missing out on the parts of the song that come out of the other one.
Caroline is my girl!! I just love that kid…she is too funny! Wow…the songs you mentioned definitely brought back some memories. I still have a couple of mix tapes that my ex boyfriend made me. Man, those were the days. Have a great week….I think I’m going to go listen to some 38 special “Hold on Loosely..YEEHAW!
Many Blessings & Lots of i-tunes,
So funny! She has great taste for a little girl! 🙂
I remember the first time I was introduced to a little thing called Napster. I was in college and had gone over to my boyfriend’s house and his roommate offered to make me a CD. He sat there and downloaded every song I asked for (and you can fit so many songs on CDs! Oh the possibilities!). My first mix CD was a mix of Newsboys and all those 90’s one-hit wonders. I think I still have it in my old collection. Even then I couldn’t have imagined iTunes (though all the cool Mac-using kids in graphic design were talking about this nifty new thing called an iPod). Ah, memories!
Thanks for the great post! It made me laugh out loud!
You don’t know how happy it makes me that five-year-olds love “Groove is in the Heart.” She will NEVER regret loving that song.
We still have yet to jump into the iPod generation (we will…), and my husband continues to burn mix CDs on a regular basis. Hey, it works for us. He made me a double cd for our anniversary. Tell me that doesn’t spell love.
Oh, gosh, Big Mama. You are speaking to my soul today.
When I think about all my mixed tapes, the songs that especially come to mind are “Where Do Broken Hearts Go,” “Everybody Dance Now,” “Eternal Flame,” and “Foolish Beat.”
I got some cool things recorded on there, too, like their announcing my birthday (when I WON the balloon bouquet and cake!), announcing my best friend’s birthday (when the dee-jay made fun of her last name b/c she’s ethnic), and…pause for dramatic effect…when I called in and requested a song. I wanted “You Won’t See Me Cry” by Wilson Phillips, but evidently, that had just been played within the last couple of hours so the lame-o lady said she’d pick a similar song. She picked “Ain’t Missin’ You” by John Waite. I had never heard it. And my tape stopped during the bridge, and I had to flip it over to start recording. It wasn’t until years later that I heard the song in its entirety. The funny thing is that I was dedicating a song to my long-time crush who didn’t even know I was alive and I still felt compelled to maintain anonymity, so I used our middle names. Good times.
By the way, I hope you know I was kidding in my email reply to you. Of course I would never microwave fish sticks for my kids’ dinner. We’re much too classy around here.
We use the toaster oven.
Oh to be young again, HA!! I loved me a mixed tape way back in the ’80s. Me and my sister would listen to the radio and record our favorites, so we could put our radios in our baskets on our bikes and cruie the neighborhood. We were the envy of many of our friends because we rode with our radios blasting. Our playlist consisted of:
Like a prayer~Madonna
Been around the world~Lisa Stansfield
Hammer time~Mc Hammer
Step by Step~New Kids on the block
Love shack~B 52’s
Cradle of Love~Billy Idol
Jump Jump~Kriss Kross
Billy Jean~Micheal Jackson
And thats our playlist, in order by the way, that we blasted while crusing on our bikes to our friends house or the park.
I feel the need to share with you this factoid: I grew up a few blocks from Rick Springfield’s house. This was during his General Hospital stint, and I spent MANY an afternoon riding my bike up and down his street hoping, just hoping, to catch a glimpse of him. (The fact that he was at the studios filming his show never crossed my mind, apparently.) Oh Rick, how I adored you and that special way you strummed your guitar.
Among MANY other songs, a must have would have been “In Your Eyes” by Peter Gabriel. I don’t know if it was the actualy song or the image of my very own “Lloyd” standing outside my window with his beat box over his head blasting “our” song that will forever make me LOVE that song!!! (Geez I’m so corny!!)
Gee. It didn’t hit me as funny at all. My playlists look alot like that. I teach violin lessons, have grandkids, love Bluegrass and Contemporary Christian and jazz and alternative, and some rock and some hip hop. And podcasts. Is that unusual? If so, too bad. Caroline and I could hang together.
AZ Dog Mom
We solved the whole “waiting for the right song” by simply recording the entire Top 40 on Sunday, in addition to the weekly local radio’s top 10. Then, with the magic of dual cassette decks, we’d use our mad editing skillz to make choppy mixes that cut Casey off mid-word. But we loved it all the same.
One of my favorite songs on one of my [many] mix tapes was “Rush Hour”. I never knew who sang it.
Then I found the video on YouTube!
I was in heaven. I just kept finding all the good old songs…they used to play on NightTracks on TBS! Thats all we had in our small town. Friday nights…no Mtv.
Thanks for the memories….
and I swear we were twins separated at birth!!
Ivy Lane girl
Careless Whisper was on the “parking” cassette. Mom would be so proud.
You all make me feel so old! My fave music is from 1967-1973. To me, “oldies” are from the 40s-60s. My first tape recorder, received for my 14th Christmas, was a portable reel-to-reel machine with a microphone. I’d love to get the stuff on that tape transferred to some newer format, because it has my kindergarten brother (now 45 years old) singing on it (he’s a professional singer now), and my kids I taught in preschool, talking & singing.
Traipsing down memory lane…
Loretta, who never had a playlist in her life. 🙁
AAAHHH…. the mix tape!!! I remember listening to Kasey Kasem and recording the best songs! So funny….
the times have indeed changed 🙂
When Gulley & I ran the 5k, I started out with “Supersonic” by JJ Fad. She said “Is that the song that goes hummunummunimmanumma really fast!” Yes it is my friends, yes it is…that’s what I needed to keep on running…..
Those were the days. I was a big Bel Biv Devoe Fan too.
I don’t leave a lot of comments, but I am the QUEEN of the mix tape. You see, my teenage job was at a small town radio station, so I had the access to the music for me and all my friends! So, even though I suck at crafts….I can so make you the very best mix tape (CD) whatever!!
My son graduated from high school today and here is his graduation mix CD….heavy on country, but that’s who I am and he is…
God Bless Texas-Little Texas
17-Cross Canadian Ragweed
Letter to Me-Brad Paisley
Sweet Surrender-John Denver
Galveston-Glen Campbell (he is going to school at A&M Galveston-whoop!)
I’d Rather be a Cowboy-John Denver
Home Sweet Home-Motley Crue (not the Carrie Underwood version by his request)
Vapor-Little Big Town
Texas Cookin-George Strait
Stay All Night-Willie Nelson
Bob Wills is Still the King-Asleep at the Wheel
The Dance-Garth Brooks
Life’s Highway-Steve Wariner
Only in America-Brooks and Dunn
100% Texan-Kevin Fowler
In My Life-Bette Midler
I thought you were referring to Christopher Cross (fly like the wind, dahdahdahdah) for a minute there then I realized I’m nearly fifty…My daughter made me a mixed CD all on her own that is I feel fine (james taylor)Dream Weaver (gary wright)At Last (Etta James), Space Cowboy (Steve Miller Band)Double Dutch Bus (Forget the artist)Josie (Steely Dan) More Than A Feelin( Boston) and some others by the same bands but I can’t remember. It is AWESOME.
I made a new modern day “mixed tape” called The Morning Playlist on my I-Pod. It has:
The B52’s(Roam & Love Shack),*NSYNC (Pop & It’s gonna be me) ,a Jackson 5 medley,REM (Shiny Happy People), The Cure(Friday I’m in love),plus Bon Jovi, Queen, The Beatles,and much more. My boys love Queen and Bon Jovi right now and my daughter, The Beatles. Thank you I Tunes for helping me introduce good music to my children.
Karin in Indiana
What a great post! I told my husband he had to come in to read it. He liked it too. I just found my old silver dual cassette Sony, but I think the cassette part is broken. I seem to remember it started eating tapes! My husband made me the best mix tape I have ever had a few months after we first met in 1997. When we got ipods and itunes, the cassette was so worn out I had him recreate it and burn me a CD. It took two! It includes some Jackson 5, Crowded House, some Aretha, REM, and too many others to mention. Our kids ask for Johnny Cash’s “Ring of Fire”, or “Get Rhythm” and anything with a good bass line. My husband plays the bass and they have loved his “boom boom bass” since they were little.
Our kids are also big fans of having their own playlists- I put all their favorites from lullabies, Hide em in Your Heart songs, Cinderella songs to “I Like to Move it” and we let them have the i-pod and speakers when they go to bed on Friday nights. Throw in a bible story at the end and you can proceed downstairs for a date night of your own and the kids are perfectly happy!
All I have to say is I used to fantasize about being in the GO-GO’s when I was in the 7th grade (drummmer, thankyouverymuch) and my very first concert was Def Leppard.
Fantasize already has a “z”. Interesting.
Please tell me you burned all of your home videos on DVD like we had discussed before your burner went out On Your iMac!
Your technical support team otherwise known as AJ
My favorite stuff is SO mixed as it is!!!!
1. Wham! –Wake me up before you go-go
2. John Denver –Country Roads
3. Family Force Five –Kountry Gentleman
4. Linkin Park –Leave out All the Rest
5. Spice Girls –Viva Forever
6. Glenn Miller–In the Mood
7. Britney Spears–Circus
8. Miley Cyrus– The Climb
9. Peter Paul and Mary– The Wedding Song
10. Madonna–Like a Prayer
11. Yiruma–River Flows in You
12. Steelheart–Mama Dont You Cry
13. Smokey Robinson–Tracks of my Tears
14. Linda Ronstadt–Una Blanca Palomita
BONUS TRACK Cupid Shuffle
I am not ashamed. This is my current list! I am 23 🙂 My mom and dad probably influenced this a bit (ages 52 and 53) as well as my best bud who is 37. 🙂
Love reading all the comments here, bringing back lots of memories. One of the first items I saved up for was my portable tape player from Service Merchandise. I made a tape of love song snippits for my first serious boyfriend in college (Valentine’s Day ’82). This past Christmas, a friend made a mix CD of songs about friends, and ones with special memories. It was great!
my son is five and when he was younger I went out, looked for, and bought a cassette player similar to the one i had as a child because I have such fond memories of it! 🙂
big and chunky? thanks for this post, my life will never be the same.
i mix a list for every mood and back when i first got Jack (my first ipod, i name things) i had a new playlist for each month. i was just discussing the mix tape with a friend too because one of my summer goals is to rewatch Felicity in its entirety and she just received a mix tape from Noel. romance at it’s finest. i swear somethings will never change.
i’ve also seen mix lists people made on the itunes imix thingy. too funny.
LOVE, LOVE this post!! Had to get my hubby to read it too! I want to tell you that the best mix CD I’ve ever made….I made for hubby’s 40th Birthday. It was a surprise. I sent letters to lots of friends and family and asked them to send me the name of a song that they wanted to include on the CD and why. The responses were awesome. I burned them on two CD’s and made a cover called Scott’s Top 40!
40 songs, complete with dedication listing. I gave everyone a copy at the party. He autographed them, like he was Elvis or something.
Anyway…the thought of it still makes me smile. You were right…
Music is power. Or whatever.
Loved the flashbacks – just a few years older.
My best friend & I would race into the house after church on Sundays, throw on swim suits and spritz some lemon juice in the hair so we could catch Casey Kasum or Rick Dees with the top 40 by the pool.
Wonder what my kids will remember?
My first semester of my senior year in college I studied abroad in Europe. My first week there I dropped and broke my brand new portable CD player. I started going into major American music withdrawal, so I begged all my friends back home and at college to make me mixed tapes of their favorite songs. Best idea ever! I got the most random mix of stuff and it was so cool hearing everyone’s different styles. Although I did hold a lot of bitterness toward those friends (you know who are) who couldn’t spare 5 minutes and a tape cassette to make me one.
My playlist would have all sorts of old school rap that just makes you want to dance. A an old new kids on the block song or two:)
I love the 80s. For Mother’s day we got my mom a record player that records onto CDs. She pulled out her old Neil Diamond (one of which was mine), Tammy Wynette, Johnny Cash…. records and my kids were so confused! I need to get one of those so I can make a CD of my K-Tel Hot Ones album.