Sunday, January 17, 2010

Mixed Magic

The mixed tape is some kind of magic to behold. When I was younger my friends and I would make mixed tapes for each other by waiting for our favorite song to play on the radio. Sometimes we would get dj commentary at the tail end of a song as they talked over the music, but if we could wait long enough to get our favorite songs on one tape it was a feat worth the stupid peanut gallery remarks.

Then, when music cd’s came out we could mix our tapes from recording directly from CD. We didn’t have to wait for our favorite song to play on the radio. It was cleaner but it still took a long time and sometimes you wouldnt have the CD that had your favorite song and you would have to wait until allowence builds up to buy the CD. Then of course the mixed tape became the mixed CD.

Now it's so easy to get your favorite songs. Download from iTunes, royalty free music sites… pirate… *cough* not endorsing pirating music *cough*

But, there is still the magic in making the perfect mix for a friend. There's is an art to mixes.

Certain songs lead in to other songs even if they have no connection by genre. You start off the cd with a bang and coast to about number six with various ups and downs. Number six is always tight. From there the mix progresses to the softer songs, if you must, then picks back up and ends with a bang or a heart-wrenching song that makes you feel like you could break or fly – take your pick, its your mix.

It's also a challenge to pink songs that your friend would actually like. I know I could not put Coal Chamber or OTEP on a mix for my friend Ben. He would probably disown me. I could put certain punk songs on Christal's mix but no Bad Brains. These two have a certain style and its fun to find music they would like in my style.

So you ease them in with something familiar, something they recognize. They may not know the band or singer but if they catch a twang or a sound of a voice that resonates with them it can work.

It’s also a challenge to throw something silly into a mix of serious music, or rap in with indie chick. These things can be done, but it takes massaging, it takes tweeking, it takes a bit of magic to make that perfect mix.

Here are two play lists one for Ben and one for Christal.

For Ben/For Christal

For Ben:

It’s a Mans Mans Mans World – James Brown

I Think I Like You – Donora

Blame it on the Girls – Mika

That’s Not My Name – The Ting Tings

The One You Love – Rufus Wainwright

At the Beach – Avett Brothers

Ooh La La – The Faces

Nightminds – Missy Higgins

Heart Skipped a Beat – The XX

Lady in Red – Andrew Marlin

Goin Home – Dan Auerbach

Lay Me Down – The Frames

Cities Burning Down – Howling Bells

The Moon – Flobots

Sincerely – The Moonglows

Nerdfighterlike – Lauren Fairweather

Shhh – Donora

Hot N Cold – Katy Perry

Teenage Dirtbag – Wheatus

Light Up My Room – Barenaked Ladies

Oncoming Traffic – Lauren O’Connell

Call It Off – Tegan and Sara

For Christal:

Wonderful – Seven Nations

Changes Are No Good – The Stills

The Police and the Priate – Metric

Tie the Rope – The Format

Road to Joy – Bright Eyes

Cornered – Andrew Marlin

Sh-Boom – The Chords

Tonight You Belong To Me – patience and Prudence

Fireflies – Owl City

Mai Ai Hee – O-Zone

Shake It – Tom Waits

Sweet Thing – Van Morrison

Via Con Me – Paolo Conte

Spokey Dokey – Cowboy Beebop

Air And Kiometers – Kaki King

7/4 Shoreline – Broken Social Scene

Monday Monday Monday – Tegan and Sara

Cary Around – Annuals

The Modern Age – The Strokes

Wake Up – The Arcade Fire

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