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This chapter considers the cassette as a format of unauthorized, secondhand distribution. The ubiquitous exchange of re-recorded music via cassette contributed to cycles of discovery and creative ferment among indie musicians and fans alike. Subcultural sounds neglected by mainstream radio and retail outlets flourished among tape traders, underpinning informal networks of distribution within and between music scenes. The traffic in re-recorded tapes both influenced new musicians and sustained the legacies of older ones, aiding crucially in processes of everyday canon-making at a time when many seminal recordings remained hard to find. Grrrl fans marginalized within male-dominated critical forums turned to tape trading to help sustain a counter-history of punk and indie music in which women's contributions were prioritized.

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