AEIOU Sometimes Y by Ebn Ozn

AEIOU Sometimes Y by Ebn Ozn


A couple of weekends ago I ran across a big box of old cassette tapes in my garage. Last year I converted some of them to mp3 format but not all of them, so after connecting an old Kenwood cassette deck to my computer last week, I decided to finish the job.

Like many kids, I spent a lot of my time (and cassettes) recording songs off the radio. I wasn’t very organized in my efforts and so many of my old tapes contain duplicate songs. On one thirty minute cassette I managed to record two copies of “Spies Like Us” by Paul McCartney and another two copies of the Chicago Bears performing the “Superbowl Shuffle.” There are lots of abrupt stops and starts as well, as five seconds into some of the songs I must have simply decided… “nah.” Regardless of duplicate songs and false starts, I’ve certainly enjoyed listening to those tapes again. It’s a lot like listening to radio from the 80s, DJ banter and all.

One song I had completely forgotten about was Ebn Ozn’s “AEIOU Sometimes Y,” which appeared on the tape pictured above. The song was released in 1983 by the oddly named band which included Ned “EBN” Liben and Robert “OZN” Rosen. According to Wikipedia, AEIOU “has the distinction of being the first commercial single ever recorded entirely on a computer in the United States.” Although this song had some exposure both on the radio and on MTV in the early 80s, both the song and the band seem to have faded from existence. The pair only released on album together (“Feeling Cavalier”), and broke up in 1985. Ned “Ebn” Liben passed away in 1998.

Rob O'Hara

I'm into old video games, old arcade games, old computer games, writing, photography, computer/network security, and of course, the 1980s!

This Post Has 3 Comments

  1. Man I wish I still had all my old mixtapes. I once bought an 80’s compilation CD in part because it had this song on it and was disappointed to learn it wasn’t the song I was thinking of. (That turned out to be Freeez’s I.O.U.)

  2. Great post! Haha, I also mistook this song for the freestyle tune from Freeez.
    And: There are lots of abrupt stops and starts as well, as five seconds into some of the songs I must have simply decided… “nah.”

    I feel ya, dude. I did that many times myself :)

  3. Made numerous mix tapes in the 1970’s from AM radio with a Toshiba transistor radio and a red Panasonic RQ-711S “Take N Tape” portable tape recorder (which I got as a birthday present in 2nd grade). Most of my tapes were of the “crap” variety – simply breaking from overuse. Since their shells were glued together (and not screwed), they were toast. Most of my early efforts are gone. I still have a bunch of tapes I made in the 1980’s (college mainly), but I now have most of that music on vinyl and mp3.

    I still listen to music on tape – mainly jazz stuff and Windham Hill stuff I find at Goodwill and garage sales.

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