2007   APRIL 12   #102

Unknown Tape

Unknown Tape - Side 1 (30:56)
Unknown Tape - Side 2 (31:13)

My collection of records of all speeds and sizes, video, and reel to reel tapes of all sizes and speeds, has long threatened to take over all corners of our house. Despite it's size and variety of contents, I have no question of which item is the most unusual, unique among many other unique findings.

An unlabeled five inch reel of tape, housed in a seven inch metal tape container, it contains a recording, made perhaps in the early 1970's, of the ramblings of a married man pouring out his heart to the other woman.

Perhaps it's best if you just have a listen without too much text from me, but I will mention just a few points that make an already unforgettable listening experience even more notable. One is that our speaker was in WWII, and chooses to share some specific memories with his lady, including some really interesting, harrowing experiences, which led him to believe that war is stupid. The other is the juxtaposition of various music: He plays music at times, in what appears to be primarily an attempt to mask from someone (guess who...) that he is recording a monologue. The choices of music, from Big Band era jazz to his then-current love - Santana! - is interesting, too.

I find listening to this tape by turns weird, creepy, intense, voyeuristic and spellbinding. How about you?

- Contributed by: Nigel Wilkinson