I produced my cheap Dixons cassette recorder and Smith, though quaffing deep of a pint of 60 shilling, stopped and sat upright. 'Where d'you get that from?'
'Dixons,' I replied, truthfully.
'That's just the kind of gizmo I want. For me lyrics when I'm on the road. A little recorder that takes proper cassettes, not those micro cassette things. I went to buy one in my electrical shop in Prestwich. Bloke offered me one of those Dictaphones that take those stupid little cassettes. I said, "No way, pal. I'm on tour a lot. I could be in a hotel in Oslo, Budapest, Eindhoven. I get an idea for a song, I want to be able to use ordinary cassettes. Not have to go traipsing round Tel Aviv or Brisbane for them stupid little ones".
'He said, "Don't be daft, mate. You're living in the past. Everywhere sells these little tapes now. Everywhere. Get with it, man".
'So I said, "OK, I'll take the machine. And I'll take ten of the little tapes as well".
'And he said, "We don't sell 'em".
MES laughed long and hard and then drank his beer in much the same manner.
- Stuart Maconie, Cider With Roadies, 2004