8-Track

Cary drove his Lincoln land barge to the house tonight. Laurie said “You know how your memories of most things are larger than what they really are? That Lincoln is larger than I remember!” Her grandmother drove Lincoln Continentals. Either way, it’s one big car, and what I found amazing is it has a working 8-track tape deck and, even more amazing, Cary has 8-track tapes. I had an 8-track tape deck in the first car I bought in 1975, a 1966 Rambler American. I hated 8-track tapes because if I forgot to eject the tape cartridge before I turned on to our rough dirt road, the tape deck would eat the tape. I had an 8-track recorder at home in the 70s, and I used to record my favorite songs onto 8-track tapes from records (playlists today) to play in the car. At least when a tape got eaten by the tape deck, I could record another one.

51 thoughts on “8-Track

  1. Awesome. When I was a kid, my parents had an LTD, that thing was huge and had an 8 track in it, as did the stereo in the house. I loved those things. I remember them well.

    • The biggest car I owned was a 1956 Cadillac. That was a hunk of steel. I was happy when cassette tapes came out. I still have around a thousand cassette tapes in the infinite shed of doom and nothing to play them on. I really like the convenience of digital music. Thanks, Jeff.

      • I bet that Caddy was. Though I have no cassettes left today, the nostalgia for them is strong, as is my love of digital music. Most welcome, Tim.

  2. If I remember correctly, 8 track players were notorious for “eating” tapes, especially the early ones. Of casette tapes, I have a blank 60-minute casette. I think it’s a metal tape. And, yes, I have a Sony casette tape deck with my AV receiver.

    Older cars … the early Mustangs were long. If you were to compare the car length with say a Ford Taurus, a 1964-67 Mustang were longer. The Mustang became even a bigger car with the 1970-72 models.

  3. After my grandfather died with his cadillacs, my grandmother wanted to buy a new car for herself, for the first time in her life alone, with me driving, to buy her car. I was 16. She had cash in her purse. First we went to the Mercedes store. My idea. She said, “This drives like truck.” It didn’t float like a boat on a street. It had traction. I loved that car. I wished she bought it.
    So then we went to the cadillac dealer who paid no attention to an old lady and her granddaughter.
    Next stop, the Lincoln Continental dealer.
    Sales person seemed to sense the money in the purse. Took her and me seriously.
    We drove out in Nana’s Lincoln Continental with a landau top.

    • What a wonderful story, Cindy. When salesmen don’t take women buyers seriously, they lose out.

  4. I remember those 8-track tape deck days in cars. They were never popular in this part of the world. Almost everyone was using a cassette tape deck in their car. I also remember the first CD players in the cars. If you were lucky you could hear a whole song sometimes…

    • With the commute times and traffic out here, you get through lots of songs on the daily drive. Thanks, Herman.

  5. That’s a gorgeous car…. big!!!! (Cars are getting smaller and smaller!)
    I remember those bulky 8tracks! I wish we’d stopped at tapes! I used to have this beautiful compartment that would fit 10 tapes and with the push of a button… ta dah!!!! Amazing shots!!!

  6. The biggest car I recall having—in my twenties—was a used, black Ford Thunderbird; the hood seemed to be a mile long. It only had a radio, but I had an 8-track tape player in my console stereo. I no longer have the tapes, can’t recall what happened to them, but I still have some LPs and cassette tapes but, like you, have nothing to play them on. Some things are hard to let go of, even when useless.

  7. The 8-track player still works! That is something. I remember when it was common to see 8-track tape pulled out and sitting beside the road or parking lot.

    • Mangle 8-Track tapes used to be a common sight. Are you still driving Sea Biscuit? Thanks, Lavinia.

      • Seabisquit is still with us, but in the repair facility right now. She has over 460,000 miles at this point and needed new ball joints and a few things.

  8. Now that is bringing back memories! I was introduced to the classics from my brother’s 8 tracks – I never had an 8 track in my cars, but did have an 8 track player in my room – there was one in a huge console in the living room, but I dare not play that “damn rock ‘n roll noise” there ha). I ended up buying a cassette adapter so I could play the newer music on that same 8-track player. Once you have lived through the 8 track experience you never forget the KAAACHUUUUNK of the track changer. Just wow, a working 8 track player …in a car.

    • Fortunatly my mom liked rock and roll, and actually introduced me to a lot of the 60s rock. Dad liked country. 8-tracks were convenient for continuous play. It was a pain turning cassettes over. Then there were the auto-reverse cassette decks, but they often ate tapes in the process of auto-reversing.

    • Cassette tapes were easier to salvage than 9-track tapes, but pulling them out and re-spooling was such a pain. Thanks, Roberta.

  9. So cool! 8-tracks… I remember, and they were replaced by cassettes quite quickly.
    I think you found an odd treasure! xx

  10. As you can see, I’m feeling well enough to catch up!
    What a fabulous car! I remember when we had an 8-track player. We had Tom Jones, Engelbert Humperdinck and the soundtrack from Fiddler on the Roof (probably others, but I remember those ones!

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