Wednesday, September 16, 2009

I gotta be in love or sumthin like that

I received a flashdrive of music in the mail from an old friend this summer. It had nearly 25 albums on it, and I was extremely grateful that he had put the time and energy into giving me such a wonderful gift.

However, this overload of music also caught me off guard. I'm still only halfway through it because I'm not used to getting so much all at once. Having been born before the digital age, I remember when sharing music was a slow process and the 2nd gen audio-cassette copies you received weren't always the greatest representations of the music you had wanted.

Cue the Wayne's World flashback sound effects...

to the mid-90's, when I first started taking an interest in music. Back then, Amy Grant and Toni Braxton were all I wanted playing on my Fisher Price boombox.

Until, of course, TLC's CrazySexyCool came out. My older brother somehow got the parental advisory past my parents and soon I was stealing the CD every chance I had. Eventually he caught me red-handed and like all brothers do, went ballistic and threatened me bodily harm if I ever touched his stuff again.

He apparently didn't think this tirade was enough. The next day, he scotch-taped a sign on his door advising trespassers to KEEP OUT.

Below the main notice, in ominous red letters, it stated without a hint of irony:

Prosecutors will be violated.

One day, when the jonesing for my daily fix of "Diggin on You" was just too much to handle, I snuck into his room one last time and removed the CD from its case.

I crept (just keep it on tha down low) back up to my room, closed the door, stuffed a towel under the gap between the floor, and found a blank cassette. I put it into my TalkGirl and sat silently for about an hour as the music blasted from my CD player into the girl-version of Macaulay Culkin's device of choice.

I carefully skipped Red Light Special, knowing that if my mom came in while that was playing she would know that I had somehow accessed contraband. The final result was muffled, and included me sneezing over the 2nd track, but it was MY OWN.

I'll never forget my cousin Lauren coming over later that week, the two of us listening to that tape on repeat while we played dress-up. We discussed how dumb people were for only liking "Waterfalls" when there were so many other great songs on the album. (First moment as a music bitch? I think so.)

Later, Lauren and I made her a tape-to-tape copy on her dad's "high-tech" music station in their basement while we babysat her younger brother. This was how music sharing used to be. Time-consuming, emotionally exhausting, and hardly worth it.

Oh, analog technology. I hardly knew you. I love the memories of working the system, but hate that I don't know the full second verse to Creep to this day.

To me, it will always be "the 23rd of loneliness and KERCHEW!"


Emily Elizabeth said...

I saw Amy Grant in concert. Freshman year of college. It was a Christmas concert - does that make it better?

Gina Marie said...

So much better... a little El Shaddai, perhaps??