As I hope we all know, this is predominantly a book blog. However, I kind of want to get into blogging about different things that I enjoy, just to spice my blog up a bit and stop me from getting bored [again].
I’ve already started a monthly/bi-monthly Film Friday series, the first of which I talked about my favourite film of all time, The Goonies, and why I love it so much. And, because I love alliteration and also listening to sweet tunes, I thought I’d start MUSIC MONDAYS.
Similar upload schedule to Film Friday- a post or two a month- only I get to recommend music I’m enjoying, create some character/book playlists, and just have a grand old time with it all. If you would like to see a specific playlist just let me know, I’m always open to recommendations!
I thought I would start this series plain and simple: talk about the music I listen to when I read.
This playlist is also called my ‘Study – no lyrics’ playlist [it can be found over here] and was originally created to be my study playlist when I get into the heavier revision the day before my exam, when I’ve finished copying everything and need to concentrate as I cover information again and again and again and again until it’s stuck in there and I can do a sweet link between the information I’ve learnt and the exact instrumental song I was listening to at the time.
My instrumental ‘Study – no lyrics’ playlist also doubles as my reading playlist. What I turn to when I’m in the library, my room at uni, the living room at home, and just want to pay attention to what I’m reading without being distracted by background noise.
This playlist came to fruition when I was in my second year of A-Levels studying Film, back in June of 2017. If you look at the playlist, it actually has songs from some of the films I looked at for my emotional response unit- The Martian, Wall-E and UP.
I’ve cultivated this list ever since, adding to it whenever I can. How do I add to it? Well, there’s a few things you can do:
- Search up reading playlists! Just writing ‘reading’ or ‘study’/’revision’ into the search bar of Spotify or Google will bring you to a shit ton of playlists that will enable you to begin adding songs to your own playlist, based on what you concentrate listening to. Mine tend to be quite chill- think no loud drums, sudden changes in tone, etc.- but anything that will help keep you concentrating on what matters is what you should be looking for
- Movie soundtracks! Pride and Prejudice! Animated films! Even IT , which has a deeply underrated soundtrack behind it. I’ve listened to some of these so often I can name the song and what part of the film they play in. It’s a shame that the Coraline soundtrack isn’t on Spotify- it’s a made up language, so it’s complete gibberish and would 100% be part of my instrumental playlist. Search up a film you love, there’s guaranteed to be songs you can add to a no lyrics playlist
- In the same vein, Video Game soundtracks! I know for a fact I have songs from The Last of Us, Unravel and Undertale on my study playlist. Indie games especially have softer soundtracks that make for easy listening, and I’ll insert some recommended songs later on in the post for anyone who wants to give some of my favourites a quick listen to see what vibe you’re going for
- And finally- Instrumental covers. Sleeping at Last are brilliant for instrumental versions of their songs, although I’ve listened to their Space album so much I can recognise the instrumental even without lyrics now
That’s pretty much all the tips I have, but I thought I’d link a couple of my instrumental favourites to push you in the right direction, and to get a little taste of what I enjoy listening to when I read/study.
1) Married Life [from the UP soundtrack] by Michael Giacchino
Just listening to this song makes me cry, but it’s also the reason I started an instrumental study/reading playlist. Really easy listening!
2) The Last of Us by Gustavo Santaolalla
From the game of the same name. This is one of those that takes me out of studying when it comes on, but it reminds me to take a break, and I just love jamming to it. Anyone else buzzing for the next game?
3) The Unravel Soundtrack by Frida Johansson and Henrik Oja
I have First Steps, Missing Piece, Departure and New Snow on my playlist, but every song is beautiful, honestly. I also find that games like this can be quite nice to relax to after a hard day of studying, and I strongly recommend watching Cryaotic’s playthrough of it if you just want something chill!
I’ve put these two together just because they are both made of smaller songs to accompany gameplay, but are no-less soothing to listen to. Undertale has a few that are quite intense, but the song Memory is beautiful. Again, these are really nice games to relax to, so if you want to watch a playthrough I recommend Ray Narvaez Jr for Stardew, and Cryaotic for Undertale.
5) Jeff Williams/Trocadero Red VS Blue instrumentals
In particular: Ballet Breakup, Contact [Final Transmission], Daydream No.19, and Another One Down. There are l o a d s of great songs across all 16 seasons of RVB, and in RWBY, but these ones have always stuck out to me. This was my soundtrack for Year 11, my final year of secondary school [besides the Gravity Falls theme], so I still hold them really close to my heart.
Fun fact, I actually used those specific YouTube links to listen to when I was in year 12, like 3 years ago. I think I may have even listened to them when revising for GCSEs. They have links in the description to jump to get to specific songs, which is useful, and these soundtracks really create a certain kind of atmosphere that would be perfect when reading a gothic/suspenseful novel.
7) I do Believe in Fairies by James Newton Howard
Thought I’d finish on this one because it’s actually iconic. I get chills listening to this. I do believe in fairies, I do, I do!
I really hope this has introduced loads of new cool instrumental music to people, and encourages everyone to make their own reading/studying playlist. If I’m not watching videos/listening to an audiobook, I’m listening to music, so starting this series is a dream, honestly. I’d love some recommendations from people for new music to check out, and stay tuned for my next posts ❤