Extracts from my Radio Websites columns, Radio User, 2013
Ian Brothwell was going through some old magazines that came from the house of a relation and found a copy of 'Tape Recording Magazine' from April 1967. (the issue above dates from 1966).
The April 1967 cover shows a lady listening to a Van der Molen cassette recorder, which it looks a neat unit. The magazine says that the left speaker is actually removable from the unit - it is in a box inside the left side of the cabinet behind a dummy grille - for improved stereo separation.
The caption to the cover reads: "The attractive lady is none other than ballerina Amina Hanafy. Well known for her work with Covent Garden Opera, Sadler's Wells and Carla Rosa Opera, she listens with professional interest to the sound produced by one of the latest cassette machines, the Sonic 8. Designed and made in this country by Van der Molen, it is based on the Philips Compact Cassette mechanism and offers full stereo record and play-back facilities. The left-hand speaker can be stored within the cabinet when not in use, but is provided with a long extension cable to ensure adequate separation from the right-hand channel for stereo reproduction. Impressed by the smart, modern appearance of the equipment, Amina loves the simplicity of cassettes." The Sonic 8 cost 49 guineas.
So far, so good. I guessed that Amina was in her thirties and I wondered what she was doing today. I did a search and found this. www.thenational.ae/arts-culture/the-heir-hunters-the-remarkable-story-of-joyce-amina-hanafy Hmmm. I wasn't expecting that end to her story. Copies of Tape Recording magazine sometimes appear for sale on eBay, in fact there were half a dozen from the 1960s the week I wrote this, all starting at £2.99.
If you would like to buy copies of all Tape Recording magazine plus two other similar British journals from the same era, head to the Australian website http://www.bassboy.com.au/getreel/tapemags3.htm where you can buy electronic versions of Amateur Tape Recording, The Tape Recorder (becoming Studio Sound in late 1970) and Tape Recording Magazine.
At 190 Australian dollars that might seem expensive but it probably isn’t, although I am always unsure about copyright issues here. Having said that I did buy some DVDs a few years back containing about 25 years worth of the satirical US Mad magazine. Maybe it’s a grey area.