FOWC with Fandango: Tape

World of Information 25.05.2016 Exhibition 10010ENTER0101 (30)

One of my first meetings with technology was the tape recorder: nothing digital or modern. Just a tape that recorded music from the radio. I remember a programme called “Top of the Pops” on the radio, the late fifties early sixties. It was Sunday afternoon and I would plug in the tape recorder to the radio and begin to record. I cannot remember the exact switches but somehow I managed to get the complete hit parade weekly.

One day the casette arrived and the tape recorder disappeared from life, almost. I once found an old tape with Beatles songs that I had recorded from a weekly radio show. Imagine my surprise when years later the tapes in the BBC were discovered and a new LP was issued with them. New songs from the Beatles from old recordings and I had them. I even still had the old tape, but unfortunately tapes had a limited life and there was nothing more on my tape. I could have made some money out of that perhaps.

Today we are all digital, and the days of tapes are gone.

FOWC with Fandango: Tape

7 thoughts on “FOWC with Fandango: Tape

  1. I even knew how to edit tape. I got pretty good at it. But — when digital editing came around, it was universally adopted by young and old alike. It was a dramatic improvement to other forms of audio editing that came before it. It completely took over TV, movies, radio, music production.

    Sometimes, something is such a huge improvement that it instantly is adopted by everyone. Word processors then computers. For me, just the ability to copy and paste text was like awakening from a bad dream. White-out and tape never made it, but digital editing did it. It hasn’t improved my spelling or typing and spell-checking is better than nothing, but often not a lot better than nothing.

    We had a Butoba. It was the only tape recorder the college radio station owned. Everyone used it and the thing was, it was sturdy enough to keep working no matter how much it was lugged around, banged up, kicked … it ALWAYS worked. Now, if only our digital equipment were equally sturdy.

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  2. We had our wedding videotaped by a pro with whom Garry worked. For a few years after we were married, I watched the tape often, but after a while, it lived on the bookshelf. We had forgotten that mylar type disintegrates over the years. When we had it salvaged, we lost a lot of sound from it. The video was also damaged, though not as badly as the sound. What a pity we waited so long!

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