Here’s a list of some of the most collectible (and expensive) cassettes in the world.

Cassettes are a hateful, obsolete format that deserves to die. Anyone who romanticizes cassettes wasn’t around when it was the only form of portable music we had.

And for those hyping up a cassette revival on the scale of vinyl, forget it. In all of Canada, just 4,000 pre-recorded cassettes have been sold so far this year. And that’s down 9% from last year. Yeah, good luck with Cassette Store Day in October.

I will make one concession to those who fetishize cassette: Rare editions can be fun to collect–and they’re often a lot cheaper than collecting vinyl.

Discogs.com has compiled a list of the most-expensive rare cassettes they’ve ever sold. Here are some examples (all figures in US dollars).

  • The Artist Formerly Known as Prince: The Versace Experience – Prelude 2 Gold, $4,117.
  • Throbbing Gristle: 24 Hours, $2,200
  • Buck 65: Year Zero, $1,729
  • Various Artists: Lonely as an Eyesore (4AD Compilation), $1,629
  • Depeche Mode: S/T indie cassette, $1,500
  • Depeche Mode, Violator: $900-1,350
  • The Smashing Pumpkins, S/T indie cassette: $1,000-1,200
  • Coldplay: Ode to Deodorant indie cassette: $900
  • Late!: Pocketwatch (pre-Foo Fighters Dave Grohl project): $679
  • Tool: 72826 indie cassette, $600
  • The Cranberry Saw Us: S/T indie cassette issued by the Cranberries, $579
  • Rage Against the Machine: S/T indie cassette, $550.

The full list can be found here.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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