Music for Reading and Writing

Sometimes I like to listen to music while I read or write. I know some people that hate it, some people that love it, some people that can only listen to certain songs or records. 

Listening to music while reading or writing can be helpful if the neighbors are yelling at each other, or the people downstairs are partying, or if the landlord is around making noise. Sometimes it helps me focus, sometimes it doesn’t. When listening to music does work for me, it usually has to be music with almost no vocals, or music with vocals that are hard to decipher from the rest of the arrangement, the rest of the instrumentation, the rest of the noise. 

And when I do want to listen to music while I read or write, sometimes I’m in the mood for different kinds of music. Sometimes it has to be super quiet, sometimes it has to be loud enough. Sometimes it’s nice to have something beat driven and up-tempo, sometimes it’s nice to listen to something drony, slow or long, sometimes it’s nice to hear something jazzy, psychedelic, or funky, or punk, sometimes it’s nice to hear only 1 or 2 or 3 instruments, whatever.

I just wanted to share a mix of different (mostly) instrumental tracks that I like to put on while I read or write. I hope there are enough different kinds of sounds here so that if you like anything listed you can find some other adjacent music for yourself. I was just trying to add only 1 song per artist for this list but I couldn’t help adding a couple extra songs for certain artists. So on this list you’ll see songs from Zambian psych-rocks bands, young Midwesterners and Canadians with laptops, jazz combos classic and new, a Japanese Rock band from the 60s, new-classical and minimal orchestras, and multimodal/multi instrumental artists and talents.

Check out the Reading and Writing playlist below, or at this link.

Best,
Nathan, fiction reader

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