When I was in college, I used music to help me study. Unlike some hardcore rock-and-rollers, though, my study music had to have a calming tempo and no words, like Bach or Native American flute or Celtic harp. I eventually expanded that to include Enya because the music was smooth and the vocals unobtrusive. When I’ve needed music to drown out the TV during writing time, these have been my stand-bys.
Recently, though, I started wondering what other people were writing to, and put “music to write by” into Google to find out. The first link I clicked through on (and the only one so far, since I’m still exploring the site) is 8tracks.com. Writers around the world have put together mixes of varying lengths and loaded them for others’ inspirational pleasure. Over the past few days I’ve listened to some really nice indie music that I would have never run across otherwise, and found that the increase in tempo in some of the songs really increases my writing flow. I also have realized that part of why I no longer listen to commercial radio is not only the annoying commercials but also that I just don’t have the patience to listen to sad, depressing songs anymore. Me and Carly Simon FTW.