This was my best friend growing up. As soon as I saved up enough money from my paper route, my mom took me to the store so I could buy it. The dual cassette was its most important asset. I used it to create pause-mixtapes while stitching together instrumentals for me to rap over. This boombox also had a built-in mic for me to record myself. Snippets of these “Lil Sage” recordings have been sprinkled throughout most of my official album releases. With the help of some innovative tinfoil placement, I was able to use this boombox to record the college radio hiphop shows that happened once a week. As a pack-rat hoarder, I still have all of these tapes and I hope to share some of the old radio recordings as part of a vintage podcast soon.
Thanks to Ebay, I have been reunited with my old friend. What inspired me to seek out this sucker is a song called “Death of the Boombox” that the Metermaids and I did on Prolyphic‘s upcoming album with Buddy Peace. You won’t hear that song until sometime next year, but what’s most important is that the most important “toy” I owned as a kid is now back in my possession. It cost $50 when I bought it in the 80’s and, thankfully, it cost only $50 when I bought it in 2011. Of course the tapedecks don’t work anymore but I will have them fixed. It wouldn’t be the first time I had to go into emergency cassette deck surgeon mode.
If you allow your kids to get obsessed with a hobby, I highly recommend you make sure that it’s one that helps them explore their creativity while building upon it. Also, I know this isn’t a popular opinion as of late, but I do believe that making your kids pay for their own tools will help them fully appreciate the value. All praise be to the high-speed dub.