The Eight-Track Miracle: 8 Reasons It Failed

When eight-track tapes hit the shelves in the latter part of the Sixties, it was seen as a godsend.  All of a sudden, you could listen to your music collection in your car, or out-and-about with the new boom-boxes.  There were even rumors it would completely replace the vinyl record.  Yet, just over a decade later, the humble cassette tape was able to drive it to extinction.  Its heyday lasted from 1968-1975, and by 1980 the poor eight-track was in history’s dustbin, a sort-of laughable derelict from the Seventies.

So what happened? Read my post on Anorak to learn the 8 reasons for its untimely demise.


Cinema #35: Great Moments in Cinematic Cleavage

Imogen was affectionately known as the Countess of Cleavage, so it seems fitting to begin our list of great moments in cinematic cleavage with her.British boobscape.  Buckle up, passengers, there's 17 more to go and it's bound to be a bouncy ride!



Retrospace Sharity #4: Girly Magazines

No worries - I'm not peddling porn on Retrospace.  None of these magazines have nudity; they're all from the days before censorship was lifted and things got dirty in a hurry. This is good clean fun for the 1950's male.  So, go fix yourself a highball, kick back in your Barcalounger, and download some free Golden Age girly magazines.  And you're welcome.


Polyester Prayers: Gospel Family Album Covers of the Seventies

THE 1970s was a decade set ablaze with countless Jesus Freaks and Holy Rollers cranking out an untold number of gospel records.  There seemed no end to the number of artists Bound for Glory and preaching the Good Word.  What holds them all together is not only their brand of music, but also their total inability to produce an album cover that is not jarringly awkward.   The hideous fashions, the frightening hair styles, the creepy vibes… each one is a tiny miracle of condensed tackiness and unease. Hallelujah!

Read more of my article on Anorak!


Paleotechnology: A Curious Glimpse Into An 80s Computer Book

Sorry for the sad lack of posts of late.  Unfortunately, I still have my day job and often that doesn't allow much time for creating the retro gold you've come to expect.  Until someone drops a motherload of cash into the Paypal tip jar (that's a hint to you rich people), Retrospace will always have to take a backseat from time to time.

Now that I'm doing a few posts a week for Anorak, things get even slimmer around here.  I have a feeling more time will be available much later, when we're deep into the summer, but that's a lifetime from now.  Until then, you'll have to subsist on sparse posts and Anorak links.  We'll get through this together, folks.  Stay strong.

Hopefully, this post will make up for it a little bit.  It's a look at Living With Computers by Patrick G. McKeown (1986).  Click here to read more and Enjoy!


Needlework A-Go Go #34

For you vintage fashion aficionados, I've scanned a couple Modern Needlecraft magazines.  Nothing particularly dazzling, but it's one more piece of vintage ephemera nearly lost to the traces of time.  Viva preservaci√≥n!


Deep Thoughts #9: Our Shared Pop Culture Wasteland

There's something to the fact that Generation X was immersed in a pop culture that was shared.  In other words, we all watched TV in the evening, and there was basically only three channels to choose from.  So we all have a communal memory of TV in the 70s.  There wasn't much selection, we all did it, and thereby we as a generation have a shared experience.

Stay with me.  I'm going somewhere with this.

Before They Went Solo: Early Bands Of Bowie, Elton And Others

Musicians like Billy Joel and Elton John didn’t start out as solo acts. Like nearly all solo pop stars, they began as just another member of a band. I thought it would be interesting to take a look at musicians who we primarily identify as being solo acts and see what bands they were in before venturing out on their own and making it big.

I’ll try to avoid the obvious. Most everyone knows Rod Stewart was with the Faces, Peter Frampton with Humble Pie and Peter Gabriel with Genesis. But did you know Alice Cooper was in a band called The Earwigs? If not, read on, my friend. Cocktail party trivia awaits.

Read more on Anorak