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The Vinyl Cafe Comes Round the Table

Updated on April 4, 2013

Richness of a Canadian Radio Mind

Well into my 50s I discovered the Vinyl Cafe and it became a regular part of my Sunday afternoons. I'd rearrange my activities to free up the program hour.

I found it so entertaining and intellectually challenging that it was a perfect accompaniment to my art making sessions.

Although the content of my art is serious, the program strums synergistic chords of interplay linking the gravity of my intent and my delight in the storytelling prowess!

No risque business here, McLean enthralls me, whisking me back to a simpler, but not less sophisticated, era, when hearts and hands touched in real-time.

Any sentimental pull is rapidly replaced by the interactive support of an intriguing story line, and solid musical selections.

I have a soft spot in my heart, perhaps stemming from its proximity to Alaska and Washington states, which I have primarily called home. And maybe it's due to the warm welcomes I've always received in Canada, during visits and during three drives over the Alaskan Highway.

Unfailingly full of banter, the program showcases Canadian musicians, weaving their stories into the varying fabric of each week's show, enhanced by McLean's own stories.

He delights listeners with tales related uniquely for each particular show's theme, additionally presenting the latest installment of his captivating Dave and Morley Stories.

Listen on weekends, for immersion in a rich soup of entertainment and thought provoking stories. McLean is a storyteller with broad appeal.

He showcases Canadian musicians, weaving their stories into the varying fabric of each week's show, between his own stories. He delights listeners with tales related uniquely within the particular show's theme, as well as presenting the latest installment of his Dave and Morley Stories.

His Vinyl Cafe program is heard on Canada's CBC, and on countless public radio stations in America. Tune in and your weekends will zing too.

photo credit:Radio

Candian Flag

The Candian Flag is one of my favorites. I've loved it since I was a tiny tot, probably because of its bright color and the familiar shape of the maple leaf.

My truly favorite flag is of the state of Alaska, midnight blue with the big dipper in gold!

photo credit: Canadian Flag

Each Week a New Virtual Venue

McLean harvests the most entertaining of local lore, out of the bragging stories that are told around the cafes and lodges of each show's small townvenue.

On first hearing, I bought into the premise that the show originates within a small town vinyl record shop, but eventually realized that the store is as virtual as most of your facebook friends.

If you have any sort of ties to your dad's youthful bygone era, you'll virtually plop down at one of the cafe tables or the drugstore bar, for a good chat and a story, and Stuart McLean doesn't disappoint.

One of my favorite segments on the Vinyl Cafe is the always enthralling in which the host reads a selection from his bag of stories sent in by listeners. This section always provides unexpected spiciness and contrast to the host's fictional stories.

photo credit:> Radio Show Set

Vinyl Cafe's Motto


"We May Not Be Big,

But We're Small"

Dave and Morley Stories

I like to listen to each of these colorful stories. This entertaining couple and their two children sometimes wander awkwardly through life, from their home base in Toronto.

Dave shares extravagant stories, somehow able to magnify something as inane as a quick trip to the corner grocery into an expansive journey into intrigue, mystery and coverups.

One week I identify with one the wife of the fictional husband and wife team of Dave and Morley, while another week I'll find myself immersed in the husband's role, narrated by Dave's voice.

Lies play magnanimous roles in the hero's interactions with his neighbors, pets, and townsfolk. Dave is able to spin the compromises he makes with his self concept, and always wrap himself around our hearts.

photo credit: Stuart McLean Composing

Taste of the Real Radio Thing on Video - with Stuart McLean

You're Right, No, I'm Right Too

Is the Vinyl Cafe worth an hour of your week?

An Early Flag Used In Canada

Canadians had used the Red Ensign from 1921 - 1965 widely on the seas, and in some unofficial circumstances on land, even though it was not an official Canadian flag. Early on, of course Canada flew the Union Jack, but that changed in 1965 when the Maple Leaf flag was adopted.

Early Canadian Flag

photo credit for radio above: Old Time Tube Radio

My grandparents had more than one beautiful old wood radio like this one. In my family of origin's small home we only had one of these beauties, and although it played most times, only during serials did we sit down together and listen as a family.

During my child raising years we had one beautiful, more modern, radio in a trim walnut wood case. During that period of rural life the one time that the radio achieve celebrity status was during the eruption of Mt. St. Helens Volcano, in 1981.

No one, not even scientists, knew whether or not the volcanic ash that flooded our valley, and much of the state, was radioactive. So I placed the radio on our antique china cabinet and we gathered near it for days on end.

After the move to our mountainside home the Radio Suffered irreparable damage from the winter's stay in our temporary storage building. I still miss that radio, although I often listen online these days.

Get Past Episodes of The Vinyl Cafe Quick

It's a relief to know that I can buy past episodes of this great program. I can even bequeath them to my favorite grandchild who's into radio drama!

Stories and More Stories from Dave

Secrets from the Vinyl Cafe
Secrets from the Vinyl Cafe

Just can't get enough of Dave's escapades!

Even the cover is funny - makes me wonder who's spying on whom - me?

Stories From the Vinyl Cafe 10th Anniversary Edition
Stories From the Vinyl Cafe 10th Anniversary Edition

I like this volume because it boasts such a wide variety of tales.

Dave and Morley are the funniest neighbors you can buy!


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    • TransplantedSoul profile image

      TransplantedSoul 4 years ago

      I frequently listen to the Vinyl Cafe - it is brilliant!

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image

      William Leverne Smith 5 years ago from Hollister, MO

      What fun - being the second to SquidLike this neat lens! ;-)

    • OrganicMom247 profile image

      OrganicMom247 5 years ago

      Great lens! I learn't a lot of new things i didn't know existed about the vinyl cafe. Thanks for opening my eyes!