THE DORM ROOM jam session is a staple of the classic college experience. Given Stanford’s especially dense population of talented musicians, chances are you’ve heard or participated in a ukulele-heavy rendition of “Riptide” by Vance Joy, a round of freestyle rapping, or baby grand concerto in a dorm lounge.

As someone who deeply appreciates music but lacks the ability to actually play it, these impromptu musical experiences that permeated my transition into college filled my heart with warm and fuzzy feelings that only live music can conjur. I was also constantly astounded by the talent of my peers, who tended to casually refer to music as just a hobby or pastime. Desperate for any excuse to surround ourselves with more music, my friends and I started inviting people over to our freshman dorm room (long live Donner 319) on Sunday nights to hear someone play a few songs; and thus, Vibes and Vino was born.

Son Kuma performing at a recent Vibes & Vino show.

Packing our one room double with an obscene amount of people created an intimate space that made our “Sunday scaries” seem to disappear. In that first year, we had everything from rappers, acapella groups, guitarists, and spoken word poets come to perform. Just as an iteration of “Valerie” unfailingly made its way into every performance, I would unfailingly look over at my friends with a pouting glance that said, “look at this magical thing we’ve created” every single time. As fun and casual as these nights were, something pretty unique was beginning to evolve.

1DAAA5A9-1C98-4035-B92D-40CF627AB0FD.JPGHarping on Stanford’s “tech bro” atmosphere feels trite, but it’s hard to avoid the startup bias that permeates this campus. I think that this environment creates the conditions necessary for the birth of a unique music scene that offers students an escape from the everyday, and an opportunity to participate in the under-recognized campus arts culture.

Vibes and Vino has grown out of this desire for more spaces that allow for the participation in a Stanford-specific music culture. While appreciating musical talents is an important motivation for hosting these shows, perhaps even more meaningful is the community that gathers around it to start the week off and share the experience of live music.


Vibes and Vino is a concert series highlighting diverse Stanford talent in intimate spaces. We host shows most Sundays at 8:30. Follow @vibesnvino on Instagram to get notified about upcoming shows.


By: Hannah Scott

Photography by: Hannah Scott