We had a good music discussion at the beginning of the 10am section this week. We'll definitely talk more about music within the larger realm of pop culture in a couple of weeks, as the syllabus turns toward art-vs.-industry studies and the maddening correctness of Adorno & Horkheimer. But here are two purely extracurricular follow-up thoughts ...
1. In our early discussion about reading habits, we didn't talk about what media might be present while you read. Music, of course, is a common background source while studying. Some people can read with music on, some can't; same goes for working/writing.
FWIW, in writing my master's thesis, I found a particular music service to be indispensable in aiding my concentration and focusing my attention. It's called Focus@Will, an online streaming service providing several channels of instrumental music and sounds specifically designed and sequenced to facilitate focusing your mind. There's a detailed page on their web site outlining the neuroscience behind this. I highly recommend it.
There's also this stupendous, ginormous playlist on Spotify called Instrumental Music to Work To. Or, if you're used to working in coffee shops and find that your mind focuses well amid the din of chatting customers and clanking dishes, try Coffitivity.
2. Speaking of Spotify playlists (if you're a customer), here are three I assembled several months ago when my grad cohort was going through a qual exam. In case anyone's remotely interested ...
studybreak: Inspiration! — songs to rev you up and help psyche you out to start studying.
studybreak: Dance Party! — songs for the needed get-up-and-dance-around break after hours of work.
studybreak: Nightynight — songs to help calm down body and brain when it's all done.