A few months ago I wrote an article about how to boost creativity, and as part of that piece I did a little research on the soothing effect music can have. This made me think about what other freelancers listen to while attempting to get the creative juices flowing. After casting the net out onto the freelancer-filled waters of Twitter, I received loads of suggestions, and went about compiling a list.
Not only did my Twitter enquiry result in recommendations, but also advice on what type of music is best. One word of warning from @ was to avoid songs with lyrics, and while some of the music in this article certainly has lyrics, most of it does not. It definitely seems that people are more inclined to go for subtle classic music that will sooth the soul and cover up those annoying street sounds that have been hampering the creative process. A shout out also goes to @ for steering the ship in the classical direction.
I am a big fan of Ludovico Einaudi, and so when it was suggested by @, I took to YouTube to find the most soothing helping of this Italian pianist. Other suggestions included Ramin Djwadi, and Hans Zimmer, both of whom are legends.
The cool thing about doing this article is that I’ve heard a few songs for the first time, one of which was suggested by @. As you’ll hear below, Vaughan Williams Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis is a soothing and inspiring bit of music – perfect for relaxing while you try to eek out that slogan you’ve been toying with for hours on end.
Yet another song I had never heard was brought to my attention by @. Familiar by Agnes Obel has, over the last couples of weeks, become a mainstay in my work playlist, and if you give it a proper listen, I’m confident it will also become a crucial part of your musical arsenal.
“If you have to ask what jazz is, you’ll never know.”
― Louis Armstrong
Well unfortunately I have often had to ask what Jazz is, and maybe I’m just destined to never know, but that doesn’t mean that I can’t make some suggestions for those who may wish to lean on this legendary genre for some inspiration.
Like I said, my knowledge of Jazz cannot be classed as anything even remotely close to extensive, but there are obviously names that we all know, or should know; one of these names is Miles Davis, and below is the man’s Bitches Brew album. Complex yet extremely tranquil, if an idea is waiting to pop out, then there is a good chance that a bit of Jazz will give it that extra boost it needs.
Other notable Jazz legends include Louis Armstrong, Billie Holiday, Charlie Parker, and Art Tatum.
When a Twitter follower (@) mentioned a type of music I had never even heard of before, I figured I had to include it in this article. A little bit of research revealed that this genre of music is a blend of Jazz and Hip Hop beats – how can you go wrong?
This research also revealed that one of the most renowned Chill-Hop artists is Nosaj Thing, and after listening to his album (below), I can see why many might love to have this type of music playing in the background.
Other classics/movie themes
Music is just an amazing diverse thing, and so I was not surprised to get tons of varied suggestions. Regardless of genre or whether a song has lyrics, sometimes people just have an all-time favourite that they have to slap on every now and again. @ was kind enough to suggest a number of songs from classic films, including the Happy Working Song from Enchanted, A Spoon Full of Sugar from Mary Poppins, and Heigh Ho from Snow White. Sometimes you just need a song to take you back to careless childhood days. I can’t include YouTube videos for all these suggestions, but it would be wrong not to include the aptly named “Happy Working Song”.
And for a final suggestion, it has to be my go-to inspirational tune. The weird and wonderful world of Jurassic Park just wouldn’t have been what it was without the wizardry of Mr. John Williams. It is a stunning piece of classical music in its own right, and has been performed by countless orchestras around the world. There are numerous versions of this movie theme, and while the one below is very short, a quick search will reveal pieces that rage on for as long as 10 hours; perfect if you have a particularly long project. In my opinion, there is no better option when it comes to inspiration and creativity-inspiring music.
So there it is. Regardless of whether you’re into chilled soothing sounds, or have a tendency to bounce around the living room to Ibiza dance tunes, I am fairly confident there is something for you here. If you have a favourite piece of music that drives your writing, please leave it in the comments section below.