I enjoy calling myself a writer, laughable as that assertion seems on any given day in which I binge-watch The Office, read trashy horror novels, or do anything but put pen to paper or fingers to keys. When I finally get beyond the distractions, in order to really knuckle down on a writing sesh, I need music, naturally.
These are the top five playlists/internet radio stations I listen to while working:
Drone Zone --
somaFM’s description: Served best chilled, safe with most medications. Atmospheric textures with minimal beats.
my recommended usage: I’ve mentioned this station before. It is heaven if you like very minimal ambience in your background work music. You could also take a bath while listening, or fall asleep, not at the same time! Emphasis on the word minimal.
find it: somafm.com/dronezone
find the soma fm app on your smahhht phone
Songza’s description: Also referred to as psychill, psybient is a genre of electronic music heavily influenced by world music and psychedelic sounds. Wherever you are, these songs will take you somewhere else.
my recommended usage: This playlist reminds me of the cheesy psychedelic weirdness my dad used to make on his synthesizers. It provides a general background hum of electronic soundscapes. Good for scifi/fantasy writing or just zoning out, man.
find it: songza.com/listen/psybient-songza
seriously you guys, I have told you about Songza multiple times now. You NEED this app if you don’t already have it. Don’t argue with me. You will love it more than all your other music apps. You don’t have to be obsessed with electronic music like me. It has every genre, it’s free, and the ads are visual instead of aural. Songza is perfection. Don’t make me tell you again.
“no one receiving” --
This is my personal Pandora station based on Brian Eno’s song of the same name.
my recommended usage: Brian Eno is like THE pioneer of ambient electronic music. If you require a background hum that’s a little less drone than “Drone Zone”, look no further than basing your own Pandora station on this or any of your favorite ambient tunes.
find it: DIY or listen to my specifics here: no one receiving.
Witchy Thug Grrrl Pop --
Songza’s description: Spooky female vocals over southern-rap-influenced electronic music distinguish this playlist, with plenty of noise-pop, chiptune, and hip hop mixed in for good measure. It’s purple lipstick music to read Jezebel to.
my recommended usage: I’ve been listening to this playlist a lot while writing for Camp NaNoWriMo (July is a National Novel Writing Month and I’m getting my word count up on my novel--shut up.). It can get a bit distracting, because the beats are intense and scary at times, but that’s the sort of bone-jangle I like accompanying my creativity. Not for the faint of heart, but if you like Santigold mixing with your Grimes and Crystal Castles, you can handle it.
*ahem* that app you were supposed to download like five minutes (or months) ago. Oh, and if you don’t know what Jezebel is, it’s this rawkin’ feminist blog. Check that out too.
Slow Motion Disco --
Songza’s description: Inspired by pioneering DJs, leftfield disco, and the spacier side of synth-driven music, modern-day disco producers slow down the BPMs and explore hypnotic, psychedelic moods that move both the mind and the body.
my recommended usage: I use this playlist during my celebratory struts around the neighborhood with my husky and/or shepherd after I’ve successfully written something for a specified block of time. The vibe has the perfect walking rhythm to it in the way that “Stayin’ Alive” does, but the music is nothing like that. It’s spacier and more inspired. The songs are long without being boring, allowing you to get lost in a sweaty summer walkabout, after your work is done, of course.
find it: songza.com/listen/slow-motion-disco
say it with me: get the damn app and experience a heightened-to-the-divine music app love.
tell me how much you love Songza here: firstname.lastname@example.org