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Writing with Music – When Spotify doesn’t work

It’s not a secret that I like listening to music while writing. I have a pair of noise-cancelling headphones, that I swear by. nothing distracts me as much as people who are talking around me, so often, my headphones are a lifesaver. Plus having some music while I am writing makes it all a little more enjoyable.

When I’m not listening to new CD releases while I am working (which I review later on for Grave Concerns E-Zine), I typically listen to music on Spotify. I’ve written previously about how I improve my Spotify experience with some additional apps and programs, and how nowadays I am using EZBlocker to mute adverts. Seriously, if they thought I’d pay for streaming music just to get rid of ads, they’d better come up with something slightly more sophisticated.

Typically, when I am writing, I prefer to listen to music that does not have clear vocals or lyrics – which tends to distract me. My favorite writing music alternates between classical music (or instrumental music, at times), post-rock and shoegaze playlists and melodic death metal (large large chunks of my dissertation have been written to The Gallery by Dark Tranquillity, and it’s still one of my go-to records for writing).

When I’m crunching numbers, and doing work that does not take up very much brain space, but that is just tedious, then I tend to go for futurepop or 60s rock, just something that puts me in the flow of copying and pasting numbers and dragging columns from one place to another.

Now, it can happen that Spotify is not working – for example, when I’m traveling and it starts to give errors because my location is not matching my profile. When that happens, I simply turn to YouTube. Since I have an absolute dislike for adverts when I am listening to music while working (if ads come through, I get so scared/distracted that I almost jump out of my chair), I finally have found a way to listen to music on YouTube without getting bothered every 5 minutes by a random ad for something I would never even consider buying: I now browse for DJ mixes that are over an hour in length. As such, I can crank out 2 pomodoros in deep concentration without getting bothered by ads (and without needing to catch any of the noise of my surroundings).

Do you listen to music while you study and write? What type of music do you prefer? Which programs do you use for listening?

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This Post Has 2 Comments
  1. Hi Eva, I listen to music many times during my studies or computer work. I tend to listen to instrumentals or epic music playlists on youtube. In order to make your youtube experience, I would recommend using AdBlock or AdBlockPlus. They both do a tidy job on removing all the adverts from youtube. You can get extensions for Chrome or Firefox depending on what you use. I also found Streamus, a Chrome extension for playing youtube videos, to be quite useful.You can make custom playlists and enjoy music without the distracting videos. Nice post as usual on basic needs of academic life !

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