In school, he dabbles in theatre as a co-curricular activity. But for 15-year-old Billy Steven Tay, there is nothing dramatic in his approach towards music.

“You’re so young and you listen to jazz?”

A common reaction Billy receives when he shares his music influences and preferences.

He has been told, “jazz is an old man’s thing”.

“Just because you are old doesn’t mean you can’t listen to new and young stuff either!” he retorted.

To Billy, music is timeless.

Heavily influenced by his father Steven, Billy’s choice of music and records is actually a replication of Steven’s CD collection.

Steven said, “I used to collect records. The collection was eventually replaced by CDs.”

Not just another brick in the wall

Amongst the music that Billy was exposed to at an early age was Black Sabbath. But Billy’s true love lies in Pink Floyd’s Wish You Were Here album.

“It sounded very draggy the first time I heard it at 13,” Billy recalled.

Slowly, Billy immersed himself in the album.

“It reminds me of my dad.”

Billy cited the reasons behind his love for vinyl records: the original format that the music was delivered in, the history behind the music and the tangible format.

He does however believe digital formats played a big part as well.

“Vinyl will not be what it is today if not for digital,” he opined.

Passion and Respect

“I’ve learnt to be open-minded and not to turn a deaf ear to new experiences,” said Billy.

He also shared, “Some of my peers think I am crazy. Some understand the passion behind what I am doing.”

“To me, whether you collect toys or vinyl, everyone is entitled to different opinions and respect for doing what they love.”

About “Larger Than Life”

“Larger Than Life” is a photography collaboration between Hear Records and Canon Singapore presented by the new EOS M6 mirrorless camera.

It is a quick visual peep into the personal moments and memories of record collectors shaped and inspired by music.

All pictures taken by Tan Shung Sin using the new Canon EOS M6.