In 1963, Philips launched the audio cassette, a compact recording and playback format invented by Lou Ottens.
It was the first truly portable music format. Cassettes could record or be played on relatively small, battery-powered devices. The audio quality wasn't great, and sometimes the tape broke or got tangled in the machine. But the cassette changed everything - for the better.
We could record new music straight off the radio, we could compile songs into themed mix tapes for road trips or to share around. Making a mix tape is a fine art. I'm sure many radio industry folk learned about music programming by making mix tapes when they were spotty teenagers. I know i did.
Lou Ottens died in March. He was 94. In Lou's honour, I've digitally restored a 1981 mix tape I made for a road trip to Melbourne.
And here's a Spotify of that long-ago mix tape.
Richard is a writer, podcaster, radio and TV broadcaster, an editor, and a lover of music. He tells the stories of how great songs are made, and of the people who make them.