Reinventing the Cassette

You might remember those little plastic music-playing devices — the ones with the black ribbons in them that, when entered into a certain device would result in your favorite tunes. Tapes. Cassettes. They went the way of the dinosaurs sometime in the early 90’s.

But that doesn’t mean they are completely useless. I suppose you could put a piece of scotch tape over the little holes at the top and record on them again, like I did with my copy of White Lion’s Pride. But one artist has found an entirely new, cooler use for them. Known on Flickr as iri5, this artist takes old cassettes (which means ‘little box’ in French) and spins the tape into these incredible works of art. No, this is not photoshop but the real deal. And it’s impressive stuff.

To the right is one of my favorites, Robert Nesta Marley. Check out iri5’s Flickr gallery for the entire collection, where you will find John Lennon, Michael Jackson, and many, many more.

John Prine Benefit Show and Free Download

Listening to John Prine, you might never guess that he’s a Chicago area native. Yet, he is. Prine was born in Maywood, Illinois, where he took up a job delivering the mail before starting his music career in Chicago at the Fifth Peg on Armitage. Legend has it, another performer asked him “You think you can do better?” So he did. And he’s been doing so for the last 40-plus years.

On May 13 and 15, he’s back — playing two benefit concerts at his alma mater, Proviso East High School for Maywood Fine Arts. Both shows start at 7:30 (they will be filmed for a future project) and ticket prices start at $40. Go ahead, it’s a good cause — click here.

If you’ve never heard him before, have a listen and get a John Prine free download here.