At Malvern, music is better together

Vinyl records are back in fashion — or did they ever leave?

Music is timeless. Whether you are young or old, there’s always a tune that gets your toes tapping.

At Malvern Collegiate, generations collide every Thursday at lunch in the school’s very own Vinyl Cafe. Sadly, the club has not gotten a visit from CBC legend Stuart McLean yet, but fingers are still crossed.

The premise of the group is simple: play good music. Every week an album is brought in by a student or teacher and kids from all cliques and grades come to enjoy it.

Nothing is more inclusive than music – there’s a reason it’s been called the universal language – and yet there is something even more special about it when listened to together, in vinyl form. Why is that?

The vinyl escapade is unique and has ”good vibes” according to one student who frequents the group.

Another student likes “the flow between songs when you listen to an album front to end.”

I agree. There is no better way to intake art than in its intended format. Composed as a collection, songs in an album are always better when they are heard together.

A particularly vinyl-inclined student said they “prefer records because of the decision-making process, you have to commit to every song on the album, not just the hits. You know where each song is coming from.”

That turns out to be the club’s intention.

“I really wanted to share the experience of appreciating the whole album and it’s artwork, with the kids,” said Mr. Matthews, the club’s organizer.

A prominent feature of the club is anticipating the week’s album by checking out the cover art that is on display in the hallway until Thursday. This year so far the club has listened to a variety of albums including Tame Impala Live, Led Zeppelin I and Bob Marley’s Legend.

Though Vinyl Cafe does not end at the centre of side b, the social atmosphere is a marvel of the Malvern community.

High school and its attendees can be malicious at times, but Vinyl Cafe is an exception to the stereotype. There is a connection in the room – everyone is happy to be sitting amongst friends, jamming to the sweet tunes and having a nice sandwich. It’s simple, fun and something to appreciate. Socializing is good and all, but the best part will always be famously phrased as: “The music, duh!”

Jesse Tomas is a student at Malvern CI with a keen interest in writing, culture and politics. This column is part of a new Beach Metro series looking at high school life in the neighbourhood through students’ eyes. Are you a student with a story to tell? Send a note to


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