Records and cassettes have been around since the 1970’s, but as technology has progressed, they died down. However, like all fads, now they are becoming very popular again. They are a fun and unique way of playing and listening to music, and the greatest part is the nostalgia, which many people love to experience!
Did you know that records are actually called phonograph records? This is the technical name for them, but people have shortened it to records or called them vinyl. Just like any other audio format, records are played on record players or turntables and the majority of the time, the music will begin in the middle of a song because you don’t know where the start is. It’s very interesting how different the music sounds in comparison to CD’s or audio files, and that’s why so many prefer to listen to them.
Records were the primary source of music in the 20th century, until compact discs started gaining a larger market share in the 1980’s. Even though records weren’t as popular around the 1990’s, they were still being manufactured and sold, which is good considering how popular they are again today. Vinyl and record players started to gain popularity again in 2014 and they have been climbing ever since. As of 2017, 48 record facilities still operate worldwide.
Even though records are popular for listening to music, many people may purchase them solely because of the cover and/or artist. Now, some original records can cost up to $2000 or more because of the artist or if it is a limited edition of that particular record is. Today, you can buy records almost anywhere at most entertainment stores, such as Sunrise Records, carry records of all genres. You can also buy a lot of the older ones at most thrift stores.
As time has gone on, records have been changed to try to get more sales by altering their looks. They have changed in size over the years, from being a 12-inch disc to a 7-inch disc. Today, most records are the standard 12-inch disc and most people do want that because it is the popular old-school look. Tons of new records are being made and new albums being produced in vinyl, but there are still loads of old records that are still out there and many people are willing to sell them for a reasonable price.
Cassettes on the other hand are a completely different story. They weren’t as popular as records, but they are on their way to becoming popular again. Cassettes are played on a device referred to as a compact cassette, audio cassette or just a tape. The first cassette player was designed for use in the car dash in 1968, however, blank cassettes were being made in places like Germany in 1964. Even though cassettes were invented in the late 1960’s, they didn’t become popular until the 1970’s and 1980’s and then they took off. Things like the Walkman (invented in 1979) really helped make the cassettes popular. All throughout their existence, they really haven’t changed in the way they look, but the way they’re played from car dash, to Walkman and so on.
During the 1990’s, the cassette market started to decline, but by 2012, blank cassettes were still being produced and bought. Same as the records, cassettes started to become popular again in 2014 and they have steadily climbed ever since. One thing that really helped the cassettes to be put onto the map is the production of the Guardians of the Galaxy ‘Awesome Mix Tape #1’, which hit stores in 2014 and was a big seller for cassette business. Now, you can buy newly produced cassettes at places like Sunrise Records and Urban Outfitters, and you can buy older ones at most thrift stores.
Just like it was in the 1970’s, records are still more popular than cassettes. Records are produced so widely and are available at many stores, but cassettes are a little harder to find. With that said, we never know what the future might bring and cassettes might become way more popular. If you talk to the people who were teenagers in the time-frame of records and cassettes, they can’t believe that they are coming back at all. This proves you never know what the future will hold when it comes to things becoming popular again with so many older things coming back and current and future generations loving them!
Do you enjoy listening to records or cassettes? Tell us in the comments below!