Gadgets

This indie record label wants to fill a hole in the market by reissuing albums on 8-track.

You know how the whole premise of the Jurassic Park franchise was based on extracting some DNA of an insect caught in a drop of amber? Or the stories where scientists are contemplating resurrecting the long-extinct wooly mammoth? Brooklyn-based Sacred Bones is trying the same with the 8-track, a long-extinct (d. 1988?) format that once ruled the road.

The format stuck around after Warner issued the last 8-track–apparently Fleetwood Mac’s Greatest Hits–but there were still takes to found on carousels at truck stops across the continent to fill a need for big-rig drivers who loved their country delivered up this way. But even they soon disappeared. Even Radio Shack stopped selling blank 8-tracks in the early 90s.

Founder Caleb Braaten believes that there’s a hole in the market for albums on 8-track and is re-releasing some older records (such as Townes Van Zandt’s 1968 album, For the Sake of the Song) in this old, dead format.

There are those who want to bring the cassette back to its former glory, but have only managed to turn them into collectibles and tchotchkes. Will Sacred Bones have better luck? We’ll see.

Read more at CREEM.

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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One thought on “This indie record label wants to fill a hole in the market by reissuing albums on 8-track.

  • Honestly, they’re just jumping on a bandwagon that’s been gathering steam for some time and there is a a good, if small, cross-section of the music buying public that loves them. In 2020, Discogs added about 10 new releases on 8-Track, in 2021, closer to 20, and in 2022 there have been, literally dozens. Of course, Sacred Bones has some traction, but they aren’t doing anything original.

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