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  • Kate Berry

Bring Back the Art of the Mixtape

Yeah, yeah, yeah...I know that cassette tapes have officially gone the way of 8-tracks, but that still doesn’t stop me from getting nostalgic about the days of old when making a mix tape (or CD) for your crush was the ULTIMATE expression of your feelings for them.

I’ve loved music for as long as I could remember. One of my first jobs was at the local music shop, where between all the cute boys I came in contact with and all the wages I spent on CDs, I had plenty of fodder for expertly created mix tapes.

Do you remember? A mix tape gave you 60-80 minutes to capture the attention of the object of your affection, and spell out (in song form) all of your feelings for them. It was simultaneously safe yet vulnerable, coy but direct.

Do you remember the feeling of slipping your crush a mixtape? The one you had worked so hard on: timing out the ending of the tape perfectly, getting the tone and mood and order of songs just right. If you were REALLY into the person, you’d take the time to decorate the case, write out all the sing titles, and give it some kind of clever and flirtatious title. Finally, there was that feeling of exhilaration mixed with hope when you delivered the finished product, wondering which song would be their favorite and whether or not your love would be reciprocated.

The best would be when they would make you a mix tape in return - ideally filled with songs about their mutual crush on you. I have to admit that I still have a few of these in my collection from crushes and boyfriends of days gone by.


Those were such magical times...

Now we get to sift through things like texts, Tinder messages, emojis, and GIFS to try to figure out how people feel about us and share what we think of them. If you’re really lucky, you’ve got someone who tells you with real life words how much they care for you and you have the skills to do the same. But does that ever happen as much as we crave it?!

I want to sound the call to BRING BACK THE ART OF THE MIXTAPE (or in this day in age, playlist)!

Let me give you an example: on Mother’s Day last year, my husband made me a simultaneously sweet and hilarious playlist for me that summed up how much he loved me in my role as a mama. Listening to it as I had my morning coffee, I laughed, I cried, and we hugged at least 15 times. Seriously, it was the best thing I could have imagined waking up to. I felt absolutely adored. Here’s a little sample of what this epic playlist included:

“Mother” by Danzig

“Dear Mother” by Tupac

“Mother and Child Reunion” by Paul Simon

“Hey Mama” by Kanye West

You get the picture! Heart = FULL! Does anything beat that?!

In return, I made Eric a playlist to listen to on our family road trip to Seattle. While listening to it, we sang along, laughed, reminisced, and fell just a little bit more in love with each other over the likes of Stevie Wonder, Oddisee, Justin Timberlake, Common, and Toots & the Maytals.

Music is one of the oldest forms of sharing feelings and stories, and I don’t think it’s any less relevant or special today than it was before. In fact, I think that we need this kind of creative and emotional expression now more than ever. Plus, it’s an incredibly thoughtful (and inexpensive!) way to share how you feel with someone.

TAKE THE CHALLENGE: Make your crush / love / BFF a personalized playlist on whatever music service you subscribe to, or go totally old school and sink some time and effort into crafting an actual mix tape or CD (decorative cover and all!).

Add songs that are special to you, sum up your deepest feelings, make you laugh, celebrate the things you’ve been through together...whatever feels real for you.

Here are a couple of suggestions to get you started:

“Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” by Diana Ross and Marvin Gaye

“Treasure” by Bruno Mars

“Going to Pasalacqua” by Green Day

“Fell in Love with a Girl” by The White Stripes

“That’s Love” by Oddisee

“Your Song” by Elton John

“Everlong” by the Foo Fighters

“The Luckiest” by Ben Folds

THEN...tag @kateberrycoaching or share you playlist with me here! One lucky person will get a personalized Spotify or AppleMusic Playlist from yours truly!

Happy mixing! I’m dying to know what makes it on your playlists and what kind of reaction it gets! Drop me a note and fill me in!