Journalists write about things they don’t have prior knowledge of all the time, but that doesn’t make it any less challenging—especially when what you’re covering seems so odd and obsolete. But through reporting, research, and a lot of listening, Spencer Hall writes convincingly of the appeal of cassette tapes, a media format that predates even his parents’ dusty old CD collection. To write such a story takes not only journalism skills, but also a pure love of music and its various subcultures. Good journalists can write about anything, but great journalists usually love what they write about.

Tape Collectors: Keepin’ it Reel

Spencer Hall | The Columbia Chronicle | January 26, 2015 | 1,851 words (7.5 minutes)