Retro Comeback: Cassettes Are On The Rise

Surge in Popularity

The 90s is making a sublime comeback, not only in style and fashion, but also in the form of cassette tapes.

These little pieces of plastic and magnetic tape have been resurfacing lately, with some major stores carrying cassettes and cassette players despite the continued rising popularity of digital music and streaming platforms.

Retro Rise

Cassettes saw double digit sales growth in the US last year, according to Genius. Cassette sales grew by almost 19 percent from 99,400 to 118,200 copies sold in the US alone.

Bands such as Pearl Jam and Smashing Pumpkins have been releasing their records on casette tapes, and surprisingly, they’ve been selling out from pre-sales alone.

Vinyl is also on the rise — but data reveals that vinyl is more popular among older records, while cassettes are more popular for newer albums. Meanwhile, CDs are dead.

Closing Thoughts

People adore cassettes because it produces that beautiful analog sound — a sound that our ears are made to listen to and love.

We might be living in some sort of dystopian future, but some things from the past are starting to make a comeback in a real, and physical way.

I’ve developed a habit of keeping numerous small cassette recorders in my house and in a bag with me so that I’m able to commit to tape memory song ideas on a constant basis. — Dwight Yoakam

The Resurrection: Vinyl is Back

The Comeback

Even with the prevalence of digital music platforms and music streaming services, vinyl records are making a huge comeback — and seem to be here to stay.

Companies such as eBay and Discogs have strong data that proves there has been a recent surge in vinyl sales — and popularity as a whole.

Here to Stay

Sales for both brand new and used records have gone up by the millions. And the figures don’t count offline sales — or seem to be slowing down anytime soon. Data shows that sales for vinyl started its meteoric rise back in 2011, and has continued to rise since — thanks to collectors and radical hipsters at heart!

Albums sold on vinyl saw double digit sales growth in the US last year, according to Genius. Vinyl sales grew by just shy of 12 percent from 8.6 to 9.7 million sales. It wasn’t quite the growth seen in digital streaming, but it’s still quite impressive for a medium that’s decades old.

Closing Thoughts

It’s quite obvious that the quality of sound on vinyl records are just so much warmer — and vintage sounding compared to music streamed online or even from a CD.

Vinyl record’s nostalgic value in the industry of music seems to be set in stone for the time being, but we’ll wait and see how this all plays out.

I’m a big collector of vinyl — I have a record room in my house — and I’ve always had a huge soundtrack album collection. So what I do, as I’m writing a movie, is go through all those songs, trying to find good songs for fights, or good pieces of music to layer into the film. — Quentin Tarantino

Spotify Redesign — and Radio for Drivers

New Redesign

Spotify is officially rolling out its redesigned platform, making it easier to move between Music and Podcasts.

Your Daily Drive

Spotify also has a new automated playlist called “Your Daily Drive” — and it just might make your morning drives to work a bit more bearable.

The streaming app creates the playlist based on songs that you love and throws in some quick podcast news updates in the mix as well.

Optimized Radio

It’s pretty much like FM radio, except all the songs you’ll be hearing are your favorites. Think of it as a sort of personal, optimized radio!

The playlist will autonomously update throughout the day, making sure that your drives never get too repetitive or boring. Thank you AI.

Only in the USA

So far, Spotify’s “Your Daily Drive” has only been launched for users living within the USA, but here’s to hoping that it will soon roll out for users in other countries as well. 

Wanderin’ Fool: Cryin’ Shame by David Quinn

A Midwestern boy born raised in Illinois, 50 miles west of Chicago, David Quinn was surrounded by old school country, soul, and rock ‘n’ roll music. He spent most of his summers as a kid up in the north woods of Wisconsin with his grandfather, where he fell in love with country music.

Back at home, his father would often whip out the guitar for intimate jam sessions. But when a childhood best friend reached out to him to play together, Quinn uprooted his life and moved out to LA.

A year later, unease crept into his bones, as he longed to play his own music. A move back home felt right.

After going back to a day job, Quinn got married, bought a house and had seemingly settled down. But after his marriage fell apart, Quinn sold his house, quit his day job and embarked on a road trip across the country.

Along the way, he played many of the country’s finest establishments.

“I just did a bunch of shit I wanted to do,” he says. “I really left everything and the life I was trying to make behind to do this. I had no intentions or plans at all. It was truly wandering,” Quinn said.

David Quinn’s life-changing excursions, which also took him to the edge of the Grand Canyon and to the city of Moab…seems to always bring him back to the highway — a road cutting through the mountains of Colorado and down to the sweltering heat of Texas and then back out west to the coast of California.

The road is long, and hard, but oh so beautiful. And now, here’s the Wanderin’ Fool’s “Cryin’ Shame”!