My First Tape And My First Interview!

Just as you manage to persuade yourself that you are comfortable with the thought of, inevitably, getting old, you hear this. A song that triggers a series of memories for you. And you realise that they are from… 25 years ago.

It was a few years after that I must have taken my first music interview. How scary!

Thanks very much, Planet Rock!! It’s all your fault. 🙂

Here is the awesome song that happens to be from the first tape I ever owned:

It was 1989. I was in my first years of high school. My dad, a dedicated fan of classical music, and I, a fan of Russian-Soviet culture, teamed up in a national radio contest about Soviet Music. The prize was an awesome week in Saint Petersburgh, one of Russia’s most beautiful cities.

I will always keep fond memories of that trip, for many many reasons. The main one: pure quality time with my dad. After all, as tourists, the toughest decision we had to make was what on earth to eat at the buffet dinner. We didn’t get back to the hotel until so late that all food had nearly vanished. All they had was boiled eggs with a toast, and a sparkly drink called tarhoun. The most vile thing I have ever tasted in my life!

I recently saw a bottle of this green poison in a local shop here in the UK. I did wonder whether now, so many years on, my taste may have changed. Somehow, though, just the thought of that made my toes curl, and I decided against it.

And why do I associate that trip with this particular song? Because we bought a tape recorder (our first one ever, as you have probably gathered). The tape I bought then was the new album by Van Halen. As simple as that.

Here is the funny bit. In those times, pocket sized voice recorders weren’t that common, neither were they too affordable. When I secured my first interview with a music celebrity, this is what I dragged along to record the interview:

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Horrendous, I know. Yet, that was such a proud moment for me. My earliest journalist memories.

I had not remembered all this for years. And, as it happens, fond memories tend to resurface just like this. All it takes is a song.

So, here is to another year of memories and music interviews!

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