Cassette-culture studies can be daunting. So we compiled a handy short-list of blogs, fan sites, retailers and books to help you get started.
• Cassette Blogs Reviews(cassettegods.blogspot.com). Send your cassette release directly to any one of their nine reviewers. Or send them vinyl. But never, EVER send them a CD or web link. They hate that shit.
• Cassette Anarchy (cassetteanarchy.blogspot.com). A sporadically updated “cassette appreciation” blog, featuring in-depth reviews of recordings and equipment.
• Designboom.com Cassette Page (designboom.com/contemporary/cassettes.html). Transformers, wallets, necklaces, belt buckles, tape dispensers and what-have-you from a design standpoint. You have to see some of this stuff to believe it.
• Mayfield’s All Killer No Filler Records, Tapes & Books, 2841 Dayton Blvd., (423) 486-1379, mayfieldsallkiller.com. New and used cassettes for sale, featuring a healthy supply of cassettes by Peter Stubb, an underground music legend (see sidebar) and a variety of other independent artists and bands. .
• Nick Hornby, “Songbook” (Riverhead Trade, 2003). The popular British author strings together 31 songs into a virtual mixtape/literary gimmick, allowing him to dork-out on some of his favorite tunes.
• Rob Sheffield, “Love is a Mix Tape: Life and Loss, One Song at a Time” (Three Rivers Press, 2007). A memoir by the Rolling Stone music critic, who patches songs together when words fail to convey his love for his girlfriend, Renee.
• “I’m Like This Every Day,” by Mitchell Powers (vimeo.com). Mesmerizing documentary about outsider recording artist Peter Stubb of Dalton, Ga., who struggles to express his cosmic musical vision after suffering from mental illness and substance abuse. Stubb has issued more than 100 cassette recordings of his own music.
Video link: https://vimeo.com/24755747
• “Cassette” (in progress). A documentary film funded by a Kickstarter campaign (fitting, perhaps), about the format itself, by auteurs Zack Taylor and Seth Smoot.
• WTSmedia, 2841 Hickory Valley Road, (423) 894-9427, wtsmedia.com. Offering media products and equipment, disc manufacturing and printing, as well as cassette duplication and manufacturing. WTS got their start in 1977 providing duplicating and manufacturing cassette tapes for local churches and continue to offer the service.