mix·tape\ˈmi ks-ˌtāp\ noun: Traditionally recorded on to a compact cassette, a mixtape or mix tape is a compilation of songs from various sources arranged in a specific order.

The Mixtape Museum (MXM) is an archive project established to collect, preserve, and share knowledge related to mixtape history.

The MXM is devoted to advancing public understanding and appreciation of the art, history, technique, and impact mixtapes have made around the world. While encouraging the research of mixtapes as records of time, place and situation, it will also examine the individuals that have shaped their existence. Through exhibitions, technology, publications, symposia, collaborative projects, and other partnerships, our aim is to create an environment that encourages dialogue between scholars, music professionals, and enthusiasts on the mixtapes various functions in society.

The invention of the compact cassette had a huge impact on not only the music industry but society as a whole.  At 4 x 3 inches they were easily portable, their plastic shell made them cheap to manufacture, and coupled with recording devices they offered music consumers the freedom to tailor their listening experience. If you are from this era, chances are you spent hours carefully crafting mixtapes with songs recorded from live radio or dubs from pre-recorded cassettes. To celebrate the mixtape and how it transformed music socially, creatively, economically, and psychologically, MXM will:

  • Encourage, organize, and systematize preservation in the DJ community
  • Promote the intellectual and artifactual importance of mixtapes
  • Partner with like-minded individuals and organizations
  • Increase awareness of mixtape and DJ heritage by engaging the general public and media
  • Become a  major hub of information and resources

The collection includes audio recordings, photographs, vintage equipment, periodicals, biographies, publications, oral histories and much more. Our aim is to develop a collection that embraces the full spectrum of mixtape culture across all genres of music, particularly hip-hop.

The MXM understands the importance of proper preservation practice, and seeks the expertise of archivists, curators and other resources to help safeguard it’s collection. We are committed to sharing this guidance with our supporters, whose  collections are of equal value to us. Visit our resource page here.

The MXM aims to share our collection and knowledge with as many people as possible. We are developing ways for people to view, listen, and study material from our collection, as well as from other archives and collectors. This includes:

  • exhibitions, both online and physical
  • lectures
  • performances
  • publications