Immersed in the unwavering fascination enveloping the cassette tape, we discover the undeniable allure of this iconic 90s relic. A tangible token of a bygone era, these analogue relics, enjoyable to touch, hold, and play, have surged in value over time. For many, they’ve blossomed into prized possessions, highly-sought antiques from a forgotten era of music consumption. The worth of the cassette tape has exponentially grown for those aficionados and enthusiasts seeking to acquire releases from elusive artists. Certain tapes are not just rare; they’re lucrative assets, turning many a profit for seasoned collectors.
If we were to travel back a few decades, we’d find ourselves amidst the golden age of the cassette tape. Indeed, the 90s was a time when music lovers unabashedly carried their Walkman, flipping tapes and rewinding them with a simple flick of the fingers. Today, however, these analogue music libraries have morphed into trophies of nostalgia, coveted by those infatuated with the romantic charm of the 90s era. Some artist’s tapes now possess a complex duality—they’re not just desirable for their scarcity but also their profitability.
Countless homes harbor dusty boxes filled with these compact dinosaurs, passed down as silent artifacts from older generations. Little do many people know that these seemingly innocuous pieces of the past are hot items for collectors and enthusiasts, all of whom are prepared to part with significant sums for these relics.
Enter Nutthapon Sawangtrakul, the proud proprietor of Cassette Shop, famed for rediscovering and reviving the alluring trend of cassette tapes in Thailand. His unique sentimentality towards the soothing sound and characteristic charisma of these tapes has made headlines in KhaoSod. Nutthapon insists that the pleasance buried within these tapes has no equivalent in the digitized libraries of modern streaming platforms.
He curates an enticing list of albums worth adding to your collection. ‘Welcome’ by Carabao maintains a consistent price despite its modest monetary value. Miraculously, if you land upon a reel for 50, you can resell it at a tidy sum of 200 baht without any haggles. ‘American’ by Carabao, beautifully adorned with exquisite artwork, is hugely coveted by foreign collectors. ‘Relax’ by Bird Thongchai remains a hot favorite among Swedish enthusiasts, and Nutthapon routinely ships reels every month, despite the somewhat indifferent response from the local crowd. The album ‘Proud’ has established itself as the measuring stick for cassettes, each track a masterpiece, and the album’s recording quality is top-tier.
Tapes from ‘Four Turtles You’, recognized immediately from its cover art alone, signals the first era of the Four Turtles. ‘The Volcano – Go to the Sea’ by Pansak Rangsitpraman stands as a versatile crowd-pleaser and a historical treasure trove for those searching for that perfect sound. Prices, undeniably, are climbing, and anyone lucky enough to possess these rare gems would be wise to consider their potential financial gains. Or, if you aspire to own such rare cassettes, make your way to meet Nutthapon at Cassette Shop at the FEED RETRO Music & Food Fest #90s event from November 24 to 26 at the Siam Museum. As you enter the festival, let your senses help you drift into the immersive nostalgia of the cassette era.