'90s Minute Mixtape Cover

’90s Minute MIXTAPES: Playlist Series

by Jan 6, 2024Featured, Mixtapes, Music

Mixtapes have been an integral part of music culture, pretty much since the inception of the cassette tape.  While they rose to prominence in the 80s, allowing anyone with a dual-cassette player to become their own DJ, mixtapes evolved into an art form in the ’90s.
 
 
The ’90s was an amazing era for music.
 
 
Vinyl records were still prevalent, the cassette was in its prime, and the latest technology – the compact disc – was about to change the game forever.  And, for a brief moment in time, all three of these platforms existed together.  With the right equipment, all were available for making killer mixtapes.
 
 
 
A good mixtape was about 90 minutes in runtime – based on the length of a typical cassette – 45 minutes per side.  In 90 minutes, one could express themselves through music in any manner of ways.  There was the classic road-trip mix, that would be made uniquely for a specific journey.  We had the work mix, made for bringing into a shift that allowed music.  The workout mix.  The sleep mix.  The bus mix.  And, the mixtape of all mixtapes, the ‘I like you but I don’t know how to say it in words so here is a mixtape of how I feel that hopefully will make you fall in love with me’ mix.  It almost never worked.
 
 
 
To add to the originality of the mixtape, the at-home DJs also practiced their artistic skills, with hand-drawn cover art, or often collages made from magazine clippings.
 
 
 
And while the ’90s was the heyday of the mixtape, the mixes weren’t limited to ’90s music.  Sure, the current sounds were often prevalent in the majority, but it was common to dig deeper, dropping tracks from the ’70s and ’80s, or even further back if the mix called for it.
 
 
 
In this way, music was shared and discovered in an entirely new fashion.  Receiving the gift of a mixtape was a window into new sounds and artists that could alter the listening trajectory of the recipient forever.  That was often the goal of a good mix – combining hits that listeners would latch onto with some obscure and new tracks that would open a door to an entirely different musical journey.
 
 
 
Because of the platforms available to use in making the mix – the modern CDs combined with some adventurous forays into our parents’ record bins – musical genres and eras were blended and shaped in ways they never had been before.
 
 
 
Throughout the end of the ’90s, the mixtape was largely forgotten and replaced by the mix CD, but the common 80 minute run time of the CD maintained the basic format for a time before the MP3 came about and killed it.
 
 
 
But now, with a re-emergence of the classic cassette, it is time for the classic mixtape to once again shine.
 
 
 
As a teenager of the 90s, this author has a special place in his heart for the classic mixtape and is choosing to celebrate it with a series of mixtape playlists.
 
 
 
I’ve dubbed these the ’90s Minute Mixtapes as a nod to the era and the typical 90-minute runtime.
 
 
 
These mixtape playlists will remain true to what I remember as the soundtrack of my teenage years. They will likely track heavily with ’90s music to start, but, as their original predecessors, there are no hard rules, and will certainly dip into other decades of music.  As they evolve, they may even reach past the ’90s into the ’00s, and even into modernity.
 
Again, no rules.
 
 
 
So, we hope you enjoy the ’90s Minute Mixtapes and are inspired to possibly discover new artists, or revisit some you may have forgotten about.  Hopefully, you will even be moved to make your own mixtapes.
 
 
 
We will add to this post as new Mixtapes are released, with the most recent on top.
 
 
 
ENJOY!
 
 

’90s MINUTE MIXTAPES:

’90s MINUTE MIXTAPE vol. 2

’90s MINUTE MIXTAPE vol. 2

’90s Minute Mixtape vol. 2 is another throwback favorite, with Porno for Pyros, Blind Melon, The Dead Milkmen, Flaming Lips, Pete Rock & CL Smooth, and much more.

’90s Minute Mixtape vol. 1

’90s Minute Mixtape vol. 1

Volume 1 of ’90s Minute Mixtapes – featuring Jane’s Addiction, Blind Melon, Pearl Jam, Mazzy Star, Dinosaur Jr. and much more!

’90s MINUTE MIXTAPE vol. 2

’90s MINUTE MIXTAPE vol. 2

’90s Minute Mixtape vol. 2 is another throwback favorite, with Porno for Pyros, Blind Melon, The Dead Milkmen, Flaming Lips, Pete Rock & CL Smooth, and much more.

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About The Author

Jason

Jason has been in love with the festy lifestyle ever since his first festival experience, The Great Went in August of 1997. Whew. That was a while ago. Jason loves the way festivals free us from the constraints of the outside world, and let us be our true "fest" selves!

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