Photo: Kevin Winter (Getty Images for iHeartMedia)

Third Man Records’ Ben Blackwell has written an essay for Discogs about the magic of old cassettes, arguing that they’re “the new 45s” because they were so ubiquitous for a time that there are countless lost treasures and forgotten genres hidden on cassettes, and to prove his point he has shared a cassette discovery of his own. After digging through a box of “upwards of 200 cassettes” that included “commercially-released mementos, aspiringly amorous mixtapes, amateur teenage boombox condenser mic yawps, [and] one-of-a-kind live soundboard recordings of unmemorable also-rans,” Blackwell found a tape some teenagers called 400 Pounds Of Punk put out in 1997.

He says their cassette, He Once Ate A Small Child, was “completely undocumented” and that very few people even know it exists, but it happens to feature a very early and very rare appearance from Jack White on a “rude” cover of Blondie’s “One Way Or Another.” Blackwell suspects that it’s “the rarest physical release of a Jack White performance,” and thanks to the power of the internet, you can hear it below:

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