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Acronyms that contain the term mixtapes 

What does mixtapes mean? This page is about the various possible meanings of the acronym, abbreviation, shorthand or slang term: mixtapes.

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HIP HOP Mixtapes

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Mixtapes in your Pocket

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What does mixtapes mean?

A mix tape (commonly the two words are stuck together as mixtape), or mixed tape, is a homemade compilation of songs (typically copyrighted pop music taken from other sources) recorded in a specific order onto a compact audio cassette, generally intended 'for promotional use only', as a soundtrack to social events or as a gift. With the advent of affordable digital audio, creating and distributing mixes in the form of a compact disc or MP3 playlist has become the method of choice for homemade mixes, but the term mix tape is still the most common one and will be used throughout this article. Mix tapes, which usually reflect the musical tastes of a single compiler, can range from a casually selected list of favorite songs, to a conceptual mix of songs linked by a theme or mood, to a highly personal statement tailored to the tape's intended recipient. Essayist Geoffrey O'Brien has called the personal mix tape "the most widely practiced American art form," and many mix tape enthusiasts believe that by carefully selecting and ordering the tracks in a mix, an artistic statement can be created that is greater than the sum of its individual songs, much as an album of pop music in the post-Beatles era can be considered as something more than a collection of singles. Mix tapes during the early days of hip-hop served as a platform for DJs. DJs would produce an arguably original track which vocals of already commercial successful stature would be placed over the beat. The thought was the mix tape would serve as a calling card for artist on the come-up as well as established artists to hire the DJ. As DJing and the producing lines became blurred, often the modern DJs will not only create the music but will also take on the responsibility of sequencing and structuring of the track, producers used the mix tape in a similar way looking to structure the mix tape as a concept as versus a collection of independent tracks. The mix tape game currently has gained prominence as established artists have leveraged mix tapes direct connection to the core hip-hop audience as a way to primarily test new music and to keep a 'buzz' during periods between record contracts. With the more professional sound, and consistency, of the modern day mix tape many artists, producers, DJs have found it to be a quite lucrative alternative to the modern recording game. Because clearance fees, royalties and other fees commonly associated with the costs of creating a mix tape track are ignored the number of units required to sell before a profit is returned to the artist is far smaller -- allowing an artist to move as few as several thousand units to turn a profit as compared to the selling of 500,000 units of a studio produced album. In 2006 the mix tape game received a devastating blow as a well known mix tape DJ, DJ Drama, was arrested along with several other members of his DJ collective through an inter-agency operation spearheaded by the RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America). Many within the hip-hop community feel the arrested signaled the beginning of the end of the current mix tape game. Some argue that the mix tape game is so lucrative the recording establishment is hell bent on seeing it end as it does not serve the industries financial interest. Other's argue that the current sting will hopefully curb the blatant disregard for artist rights displayed by mix tapes through its lack of proper clearance of samples and ignoring of publishing fees and royalties. The average mix tape contains 20-32 tracks, with virtually no segueing skits between records. The DJ or producer of the track will 'watermark' exclusive tracks with shout-outs of the DJ's crew/production team (ironically this is done as not to allow someone else to claim credit for their craftsmanship and hardwork). While mix tapes were once only found at Mom & Pop type music stores they can now be purchased through retailers such as amazon.com, Walmart, and iTunes. It is not uncommon for an artist to produce a 'new' mix tape each week. "I saturate the street market," 50 Cent explained, "because mixtapes are the entry level of hip-hop." -- 50 cent (mixtapes history)

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