Thailand’s thriving collectibles market of 90s cassette tapes

Photo courtesy of KhaoSod

The allure of the cassette tape, the quintessential item of the 90s youth, is unwavering.

The sensory joy these analogue devices offer through their tangible nature has seen their value increase over time, transforming them into valuable collectables. This is particularly true for tapes from certain artists, which are not only hard to find but have also become a lucrative source of income for many.

The 90s was an era when cassette tapes were the go-to for music lovers. These tangible analogue tools have a timeless charm that has seen them turn into collectables for many who are infatuated with the beauty of the 90s era. Now, tapes from some artists are not only rare but also provide a handsome income for many.

Many of us may have kept these tapes at home, passed down from our parents or older generations. Unbeknownst to many, these old items are the target of collectors who are willing to purchase them for their personal collections. One such collector is Nutthapon Sawangtrakul, the owner of Cassette Shop, who has revived the cassette tape trend in Thailand with his unique perspective on sound and charm, reported KhaoSod.

Nutthapon confirms that the songs available on streaming platforms are incomparable, and shares a list of albums worth collecting:

1. Welcome by Carabao is a constant price. Although the price is not very high, if you find a reel for 50, you can sell it for 200 baht without any complaints.

2. American by Carabao is sought after by foreigners as it has quite beautiful artwork.

3. Relax by Bird Thongchai is an album desired by a gang of foreigners who collect tapes in Sweden. Nutthapon has sold over 10 reels and sends them regularly every month. While Thais may be indifferent, the album is quite valuable overseas.

4. Proud has become a benchmark for tape players. Every song is beautiful, and the recording work is filled with quality. Prices start at 1,000 baht and in a good rhythm, can be sold for 2,000 baht.

5. Four Turtles You is the first era of the Four Turtles. It is an album that people in the 90s recognized as genuinely good just by seeing the cover.

6. The Volcano – Go to the Sea by Pansak Rangsitpraman. This album is good all around and is a historical album for us in many ways.

So, sneakily check the cabinets at home to see which album tapes are coming into fashion, because their prices are soaring. Or, if anyone wants to own rare cassette tapes, they can meet Nutthapon at the Cassette Shop at the FEED RETRO Music & Food Fest #90s event held from November 24 to 26 at the Siam Museum.

Thailand News

Puntid Tantivangphaisal

Originally from Hong Kong, Puntid moved to Bangkok in 2020 to pursue further studies in translation. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Comparative Literature from the University of Hong Kong. Puntid spent 8 years living in Manchester, UK. Before joining The Thaiger, Puntid has been a freelance translator for 2 years. In her free time, she enjoys swimming and listening to music, as well as writing short fiction and poetry.

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