Thursday, May 5, 2011

8-Tracks at the Goodwill

It's no surprise seeing VHS movies lining up walls and shelves at thrift stores since DVD took over VHS. But even DVDs are turning up in these stores as well. As are the still-hanging-on-for-life CDs. Old vinyl LPs and cassettes still turn up in thrift stores as has been happening for years now. As I understand it, some people have old working turntables. And I have a rather old but still working CD player form 1991 that has a cassette component--how many of you still have one of those things? All these forms of media are sure to turn up in such stores.
In the last few days, I have noticed something at Goodwill I don't see in these stores as often the other stuff. The 8-track. And several stacks of them. I never would have expected to see just
one or two of them, let alone several stacks on one shelf.

A lot of popular artists were represented, too many to name, though I did see quite a few country music artists and even some country compilation albums. One 8-track that caught my attention was one called "Music City U.S.A," pictured at left. There were at least two copies of this tape so it must have been popular at some point. I don't remember what songs and artists were listed on this tape, but here is some info I found on this compilation.

Another 8-track I immediately noticed was one that read "Sessions Presents: Get It Together"
This, too, was a compilation tape. I was then reminded of a series of mail-order record commercials that said "Sessions Presents." Remember those old commercials? Many mail-order records ads appeared in the 70s and 80s and as such were sold on LPS, 8-tracks and cassettes. I'm not sure if there were any that were made when CDs became popular.

I can't seem to find a lot of information on "Sessions Presents" albums, though I was able to locate one of the commercials in a clip embedded in this blog post. I can't seem to locate this on you Tube or I would have embedded into my own blog post. I'm afraid this is the best I can do :-)

Anyhow, seeing the "Sessions Presents" 8-track reminded me of these old commercials for compilation albums that could only be ordered this way. "Not sold in stores," the ads always told viewers. I never ordered anything this way. But I imagine these old compilation albums can now be found in thrift stores and used record stores. About seven years ago at the Goodwill, I saw an old compilation LP of love songs called"Heartbeat," the ad for which I remember seeing a lot on TV in the 1980s. I'm sadly having trouble locating any info on this album, though. I vaguely remember the announcer for the commercial, however, saying that it included songs for Roberta Flack and Kenny Rogers, and I also seem to remember hearing a clip of "Escape (The PiƱa Colada Song)" in the ad. That takes things back a lot!

FYI, I was never an 8-track user and my aunt had an 8-tack player which had a cassette adapter that was inserted into the hole where the 8-tracks would be played, and the cassette would play this way. Anyone else have anything like this?

And does anyone still have an 8-track player?

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