6 years ago I decided to move to San Francisco. This is the mixtape I made for myself. I listened to it before I left, on my road trip to my new home, and a couple weeks after that.
1. "The Good Life" — Weezer
2. "Strange" — Built to Spill
3. "Wake Up" — Arcade Fire
4. "Blacking Out the Friction" — Death Cab For Cutie
5. "Holland, 1945" — Neutral Milk Hotel
6. "Girl on the Wing" — The Shins
7. "Fly Around My Pretty Little Miss" — Built to Spill
8. "Hello, Goodbye" The Beatles
9. "California One" — The Decemberists
I recently caught up on one of my new favorite shows, Parenthood (Peter Krause FTW). Anyway, in the ep, 15-year-old Haddie has a sleepover party to help get over her ex-boyfriend. One of her friends finds some burned CDs and realizes that they all came from Haddie's dreaded ex. Though Haddie protests at first, her friends start a frenzy of cracking all the CDs in half as a means to destroy any mementos of the relationship. For me, mix tapes and CDs are meant to be cherished. Even if they drudge up tough feelings, I still like keeping 'em around — and hey, I'd be lying if I said my exes didn't introduce me to some good tunes. What about you?
A couple of years ago, I was dating a guy who, two months into our relationship, informed me that he would be leaving as soon as the summer began. In his words: "I'm quitting my job to travel." Seriously, people do this? I was incredibly bummed, of course — but also, admittedly jealous. So to prep for his departure — first stop, Italy! — I made him a mix CD. It was a small gesture to live vicariously through him, show that I was thinking about him, and all right, I hoped that by blasting my gift in his ear over the course of his trip, he literally wouldn't be able to get me out of his head.
I tried not to get too mushy with my song picks, but instead, include some upbeat stuff good for long bus rides. The one requisite: they all had to have a European city or country's name in the title. So without further ado, I'd like to share the track list with you. I've since swapped around a few picks and added in some new Corinne Bailey Rae and Rufus Wainwright to conclude the mix in New York, my stomping grounds. Otherwise, it's mostly the same. Hope you like, whether you're visiting Europe this summer or not!
- "London Bye Ta Ta," David Bowie
- "Amsterdam," Peter Bjorn and John
- "Holland, 1945," Neutral Milk Hotel
- "Barcelona," The Plasticines
- "Kingdom of Spain," The Decemberists
- "Postcards from Italy," Beirut
- "Rome," Phoenix
- "Paris Nights/New York Mornings," Corinne Bailey Rae
- "Who Are You New York?," Rufus Wainwright
- "Whole Wide World," The Mountain Goats
Ahh, remember mix tapes? In middle school, I'd sit in front of the radio with my recorder to catch a song for posterity (right before the DJ clicked to commercial, of course). I did it so I could play the tune back to my heart's content — and sometimes, if a friend was very lucky, I would turn my favorites into a mix to share.
Now things are easier. Just a couple years ago, an ex made me CDs with downloaded music, and even though they were digital, I still treasured them. They helped me discover new bands I had never heard of, and OK, I tried to dissect every song for hidden clues about our relationship. Who hasn't done the same?
To celebrate the art of the mix tape, I've created a brand new group in the BuzzSugar Community for mix tape creators and their recipients: I Made You a Mix Tape. Once you join, feel free to post your own stories, any song titles from ones you've made (or gotten) in the past, or for kicks, create a new one. Did you make one recently that you're listening to on repeat? Still holding on to your high school boyfriend's featuring "Crash Into Me?" It's all about having a bit of nostalgic fun, so go here now and share. Happy mixing!