Yesterday, I had a strange cultural experience.
During a girl time with some great friends (all admittedly younger than me), I remembered an old CD collection that was headed out of my house to a favorite charity thrift shop.
A family member had shared them with me since we are big music enthusiasts. They previously belonged to her mom and dad who also loved music. These beloved parents have passed and she finally was letting the CDs go herself.
My family here chose CDs for their sound systems (not playing the CDs themselves but converting them to MP3s for their particular listening devices). This collection contained some sweet old classics – a wide genre of music. Fun to just look through…if you love music.
So here was the rub yesterday. Either my friends were not music enthusiasts at all – OR – they were put off by the stacks of CDs temporarily “cluttering” my dining room table. There was no rush right over to check it out. No, “Wow, let me see what you have.”
No curiosity. No nostalgia. No “Thanks, but no thanks.”
Almost to a person, it was “Who even plays CDs any more!?” “I don’t think I know how to play them anymore.” “New cars don’t have CD players anymore.” “I’m getting rid of stuff!” “Why, when I can download whatever I want.”
It turns out my offer was laughable. Thanks again, Marie Kondo.
I actually wasn’t offended. Just amused. Looking in on a culture I loved (well the beautiful women in that room, for sure)…from the outside.
I remember when CDs replaced vinyl records…no, sorry, that demise happened earlier. CDs replaced cassette tapes. Now, that was my season as a girl. Djs at dances with silos of cassette tapes ready to make an evening magical. Friends making cassette tapes for each other of songs we captured off the radio. Fun times!
[Before cassette tapes, I remember my big brother practicing dancing with me before the prom one year with his vinyl records that I was forbidden to touch.]
Anyway…wonderful memories of each medium for playing music.
Dave, my music lover husband, is a slow adopter. Cautious. He finally packed up his vinyl records and built an amazing CD collection…and then we went overseas… He let go of that collection as we downsized our lives. I thought he was so brave.
Of course, in time, a new collection was birthed. All kinds of music, between his likes and mine, and growing children with different interests altogether.
If someone brought a box of CDs into the room and offered them up, I would have walked over, just to see what was there. Just to share in the experience. What in that collection was once loved by someone else? What did the CD liner notes include? What treasure might I take as a gift and figure out how to play and convert it – for an even longer season of its musical loveliness?
Different generation. Lovely generation. With far less “baggage” than my own.
Anyway, hope this made you smile. Based on my friends’ rejection of yesterday’s CDs, I’m thinking they aren’t just yesterday, or last week…but extinct! Unlike with vinyl record collectors, we may not see a revival of CD owners. However, one can’t predict. Whether there is anything to play them on or not, they make very tiny art pieces reminding us of the music of an era…past but pretty perfect.Photo Credit: Instagram, @kttaekey, also from the piece below by Hussein Kesvani
P.S. Two old souls among my young friends did take advantage of my re-gifting. Maybe for their mothers…Enjoy!