Mix Tape

I remember summer break
When you made me the mixed tape
Hisses that I grew to know
That segued from Poison to Skid Row
And how it caught that little laugh
The penny on the phonograph
The Scorpions ‘Still Lovin’ You’
Was it too good to be true?

I saw you kissing Candy Spritz
That same night that the tape would split
You begged me please to take you back
Said you loved me and that was that
I knew that we were meant to be
When Steve Perry sang ‘Faithfully’
So I taped the tape back together
But discerned the tape’s split forever

My faith renewed as I heard
The band Extreme sing ‘More Than Words’
Then came that day you seemed so distant
As if I was nonexistent
Was this something I could beat
With ‘Home Sweet Home’ played on repeat?
Though I was forced to concede
The tape played just at quarter speed
The end was nigh, I could not cavil
Then the tape became unraveled
And if my memory’s correct
I think it broke the whole tape deck

30 years I scarce remember
Those years that we spent together
Though back in my mem’ry I’ll go
Those songs play on the radio
And briefly think of your soft lips
And still expect to hear the skips.

Thank you to Phil Taylor for reminding me of a time when I used to listen to mixed tapes.

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78 thoughts on “Mix Tape

  1. The beauty of music. Each song brings back a time and a place doesn’t it? And yes, the tape mixes. It seemed that the best mixes were either borrowed and not given back, or got caught in the tape machine. As a side, I see the bass player from Extreme from time to time in town. He’s been over a few times for a beer!

    • Yes, it is funny how music can evoke memories. That’s pretty cool about the Extreme bass player. Living in L.A. we see a lot of the old rock stars hanging about, as you know. It’s always cool to see them anyway.

      • We don’t get a whole lot of celebrities in our neck of the woods. It’d be great to see someone like Slash knocking down a beer now and then. The only rock celebrity that I’ve had a chance to play with was Jonathan Richman and that was years ago.

      • Yes, I’ve seen Slash a couple of times. There was a band of high end rock studio musicians who used to have a residency at a club and they just did a lot of 70s covers and there were always a lot of rock stars hanging out. It’s cool to see them but not like I have much to show for it other than memories.

    • Oh, yeah, that’s pretty cool. Waiting to hear your fave songs on the radio. I did most of my recording off my albums so then I could just be all proud of the way it was recorded and how the songs played off each other, but waiting for the song you wanted, did that too sometimes. Pretty cool!

  2. Me (being impractical as I am) and tapes never mixed. I estimate my efforts with tapes cost me at least three car stereo’s and my mind (because they hissed so very much it got on my nerves). It is thus that I hated tapes. Bloody good verse about them though!

      • Do you know the day I gave all those old tapes to the charity shop was a really good day. CD’s had just come out and spending a small fortune I went out and replaced the lot with CD’s save for one it took me years to find – a Jacque Brel album. Only spotted it a year or so back in a French supermarket so all is well again.

  3. Marissa, I think I never got a tape mix in my life!! I did get a cd mix with Christmas songs from a colleague once. Do you think I could still get one? I’ll settle for an UBS stick 🙂

    • Oh gosh, unfortunately, the days of the mixed tape, I think, are long gone…although I did just read an article that they are trying to bring the media back, but who knows? A mixed CD is just as well, I think, although in my opinion, it loses a bit of the personal touch!

  4. “More Than Words”! I used to sit by the radio during the “requests” shows and try to will whatever boy/boys I had a crush on, to dedicate that song to me! “This one’s going out to Kimberley tonight”.

      • Yes, well it’s not quite what you think. i try not to go on the computer too much late at night because of family time and also because I heard it makes you wakeful. Instead I just peer at the iPhone so that my blogs don’t pile up. I know it may seem as distracting, but I don’t get as sucked in by the iPhone. Anyway, it’s early now and I’m at work where I really don’t care about being sucked in by the computer and, yes, Lights, what an awesome song!

    • So funny because, completely intended it be read two ways, for me, actual skips in tape and the fact that the relationship was never perfect! But hey, I love it when readers get something out of my poems that are even more than I intended.

  5. We won’t get spooled again, Marissa. Unfortunately, in some cases! I would make mixtapes and give them to my friends as little presents, no romance involved, just me wanted to spread my musical cheer …

  6. The good old tape days. ..I even had the 8 track experience where they were eaten by tape deck..kids these days don’t know what they are missing. Alas, the bittersweet memories of Rock n Roll 🙂

  7. Ohhhhhh, have you ever brought me down memory lane with this one! The mixed tapes! In fact I just received one (one to all my siblings too) and all of us are scrambling …. Who still has a tape deck? I do. LOL Really I do! Cassette tapes. Wow, my friend, you really are taking me down memory lane ….. ahhhhh, those were the days!!! Love, Amy

  8. This is really cool because I just saw a live music show called “Mixed Tape” here in San Diego – – it totally covered the 80’s timeline, like different events acted out onstage but set to music, i.e. Challenger disaster, Aids, etc. Interesting show and love how you always manage to work a fave artist of mine in your stuff – – big Journey fan.

    • That does sound interesting and, yes, can’t really make a romantic mix tape without Journey! By the way, is it Mixed or Mix tape? Originally had mixed but then saw others had it as mix so I changed it.

  9. Wow really enjoyed your blog and poetry too. I still have tapes of all sizes including of course, master reel to reels. Vinyl I loved and still do. Album sleeves were to die for. Burbank, know it well, lived there for some time and was there making a record (album) when the earthquake hit., and for the riots, the mud slides, the floods and the fires. Otherwise home was Pasadena. Thanks so much for liking my blog – you popped in recently. I wonder if you went over to Creative Frontier where I am a regular guest blogging about some of my experience sin the music biz? Do go over (links on my blog) and comment. They will appreciate it and I will enormously. You will guess the super-star I just know it! I am a crime/mystery writer now but often pop back to the old life to write some anecdotes – which I think will amuse. I do hope we chat soon. You must have loads of stories too…have a fab weekend. Janex

    • Thank you for showing me these hidden gems on your site. Truly fascinating, and I always love great rock n’ roll stories! I’m so glad you told me about the Creative Frontiers blog because I don’t think I would have ever found them. With so many bloggers, I usually don’t find much time to scan the links in their blogs but from now on, I’ll try to go over yours regularly!

      • Marissa, the CF blog is not mine, just a regular spot there but do please pop back now and again – other bloggers there also. I am there every two weeks with all things music related. My blog here is my main one and if you investigate you’ll find loads of stuff to wade through if you are of a mind to that is. I love investigating blogs and try to find new ones and visit older ones as often as I am able. I learn so much too…anyway, I am so glad you visited and thanks so much and do pop back here and over at CF for my two weekly efforts. Have a fab day and enjoy the fruits of your mis-spent youth. 🙂

      • Right, yes, I understood about CF. Didn’t see a follow button though. Guess I’ll just have to pop on and check it out every so often. And as for enjoying the misspent youth… I always do!

      • Oh perhaps there isn’t one, I have no idea, I shall ask Martin who is the big boss man. Otherwise popping on here when I post a new piece and you can click on it here….all so techy! Misspent youth – oh the memories and the joy of it all being so fresh and to be that un-jaded (if there is a word)….lol

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