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Residential Life

Esther's blog: Create the perfect playlist

By QMStudentEsther 20 Nov 2020

Home feels like what I hear through my headphones.

Music is a universal source of comfort and has been for millennia. Even pre-historic music started by mimicking the natural sounds. Maybe because they knew that if they were away from home, the music would always be there as a reminder. No matter how far away you are, there is something about music that always feels like home.

This is much needed, now more than ever during this lockdown period.

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So, what makes us want to listen to music?
Missing home, boredom? Filling silence or motion sickness? [*raises hand*]

My answer - all the above but mostly because I am a sucker for it. As much as I love peace and quiet, there is something just as relaxing as having a loud world exclusive to you. Music is something we can always count on which is why people get aggravated on days they forget their earphones - always have a spare pair!

Now the weather has gotten much colder, what better way to enjoy some quality time with ourselves than to get warm and cosy and create a playlist? But how do we choose which music genre or even who to listen to?

It's said that we're more likely to listen to artists/music that has sounds we are used to hearing because our brain is more likely to welcome familiar sounds. I got into one of my favourite artists because the first song I heard reminded me of another song I loved. If I am a fan of Daniel Caesar, I am more likely to be into songs by H.E.R – because they have similar sounds, so as much as we sometimes fail to admit, familiarity is something we are always drawn towards with music.

Now that we're in lockdown -again- I'm saving you the trouble of thinking up tracks and have shared below a few songs to accompany you when you take a walk longer than the distance between your bed and your kitchen.

No Replacing You - Pink Sweat$
Dreams - Bazzi
Pretty Little Fears (feat J-Cole) - 6lack 
backpack - slchld 
GRIND - suggi
Older- Sasha Sloan

Top tip: Go down Regent’s Canal and take a walk to Victoria Park.
PS: watch out for cyclists and runners (or join them for a nice socially distanced run!)

As handy as pre-made playlists are, there's nothing that beats a playlist YOU made and are proud of though. I like to share mine with my friends because they are just that good!

So, here are my top tips for making the perfect playlist: 

a person using a laptop computer sitting on top of a bed

For Studying: 

  • Try to find songs that you like the vibe of but are not familiar with. It's very easy to start singing along to a song that you know and that can get very distracting. This way, you have a nice song playing in the background, AND get work done. A win-win.
  • Go for sounds rather than songs. Lo-fi tracks are now the go-to for anyone that likes to study with music. Channels such as ChilledCow and Cafe Music BGM Channel have a variety to choose from; ranging from workout hip-hop lo-fi beats, to bed-time lo-fi sounds.
  • Make it as long as you plan to study for. Why? Because you know that when the playlist ends, it is time for a much-deserved ice-cream break 😉
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For working out...

Are you looking for a beat-heavy playlist for long runs? Gather some of your favourite upbeat tracks and add it to your playlist. I recently made a 60-minute-long playlist to accompany me for my long runs. I love it!

  • You don't always have to choose music, what about a podcast? Spotify has a variety to choose from.
  • Consider the playlist sequence. Do you shuffle your songs? Or do you like to listen to songs in the order that they were made? Maybe you want the songs to link seamlessly i.e. matching ending and starting chords. Up to how you want the playlist to feel when you listen to it.
  • If you do not have a specific vibe in mind though, the order doesn't really matter

Let's create a playlist together...

If you were to add one song to a QM-Halls playlist, which would you choose? We want to create a Queen Mary Halls playlist with all the songs chosen by YOU! Simply put your song choice in the form below...

Until the next post...repose, and rest.


QMStudentEsther profile picture

QMStudentEsther Hi all, I am an undergraduate student who likes all kinds music and hopes to share that with you all :)
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