Mixtape #3 – 1989

I found a box of tapes I made in the 80s and 90s. This one, labeled “My Special Tape,” is a melancholy miscellany that reflects the personal struggles of my young adulthood. Love, loss, longing, and my troubled, intermittent relationship with Lance, who would eventually be my ex-husband.

I can remember holding this tape so many times in my youth, wondering who I was and what I would be, and here I am, holding it in my hands again, almost thirty years later. It feels strange, as if I’m in two places at once, the present and the past, the east and the west, the old and the young.

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In true mix tape style, this is not only a collection of songs but also pieces of songs, reconstructed into a kind of poetry. I think it’s kind of a cool idea and amazing I could do it with just cassette tapes, not the advanced digital editing we have nowadays.

In sleep he sang to me, in dreams he came (1)
And I know it’s only in my mind, that I’m talking to myself and not to him (2)
Sometimes it seemed if I just dreamed somehow you would be here
Wishing I could hear your voice again, knowing that I never would (1)
These dreams go on when I close my eyes (3)

There’s a lady who’s sure all that glitters is gold
And she’s buying the stairway to heaven (4)
Take these broken wings and learn to fly again (5)
She’s like the wind (6)

Build a stairway to heaven with a prince or a vagabond
And may you never love in vain (7)
A little fall of rain can hardly hurt you now (2)
After all the rain (8)
After the rain washes away the tears and all the pain
Only after the rain can you live again (9)

It’s only forever, not long at all (10)
Who wants to live forever? (11)
I remember a time I knew what happiness was (2)
Some dance to remember, some dance to forget (4)
Masquerade, paper faces on parade,
Hide your face so the world will never find you (1)

Sources: (1) Phantom of the Opera (2) Les Miserables (3) Heart (4) Led Zeppelin (5) Mr. Mister (6) Dirty Dancing (7) Rod Stewart (8) Cheap Trick (9) Nelson (10) Labyrinth (11) Queen

~ J.L. Hilton

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