I started this Tumblr with another project in mind, something slightly more compulsive. Needless to say, as a serial slacker, it didn’t really pan out. But, having broken down and entered the world of Spotify, I thought this might be a good way to preserve all the mix CDs I’ve made in and since college. This is important, because there is are a few themes at play here. (spoiler alert: this is about to get nerdy)
I feel like we are fast approaching a time period when still making and listening to mix CDs will make me start to resemble John Cusack’s character in High Fidelity (I know it’s a book, but isn’t me taking the time to google the character’s name pointless? I mean, you know what I mean, you understand the sentiment. Okay?). Striving to be hip, clinging to an antiquated technology that is far inferior than the method by which a majority of your peers consume this medium. Whatever. I love mix CDs. It’s a generational thing, maybe. I like them more than tapes or records or a box that holds every song ever written. I like the challenge of constructing a mix CD, making sure everything fits together perfectly, in twenty songs or less. In that way, maybe I am like Rob Gordon (fine, I looked it up. Fun fact: the character’s name was Rob Fleming in the book.).
When I started making mixes in college on my brand new (university mandated) MacBook Pro, I named them simply and I’ve continued that practice this day: Date, followed by the name of the 13th track. My reasoning was two-fold. By naming them after the full date, I hoped to one day, amass a full year’s worth of mixes, 366 CDs spanning years of my life, through heartbreak and genre transition. Also, I liked the number 13.
I realized later, that the true benefit of this naming system was what it allowed me to remember about each individual mix. If I’m looking for a song on any given CD, I can find it by knowing the name of the 13th track (did I not mention the tracks are alphabetized? I might have a problem. Alphabetizing by track name nearly always works flawlessly and I have no idea why. If a mix feels off, I will add or delete a track to fix it, rather than move songs around.). Secondly, dating the mixes allows me to look back to a specific time in my life, to see what I was feeling on any given day. That’s why I’m kind of excited to start compiling these again, and I thought I’d blog about it too. It might be cathartic. It will definitely be nerdy as hell.