Best Music to Listen to While Reading | Our Favorites

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Listening to music is a great way to relax and unwind after a hard day at work.  You can listen to music while commuting, or play it in the background while making dinner.  But, can you listen to music while reading?  

best music to listen to while reading

In this article we will answer the question 'Is it good to listen to music while reading'.  We will also identify the Best Types of music to listen to when reading.  


Do you want to ENHANCE your reading experience? Click the button to discover more about Binaural Beats - the type of music that improves your concentration and reading. 

Is it good to listen to music while reading?

We are often asked by our readers can you listen to music while reading?  

And the answer depends.  

It depends on the type/genre of the text you are reading.  If you are engrossed in a murder mystery novel, a bit of dramatic classical music may create a bit more atmosphere (similar to a background soundtrack in the movies).  But, if you are reading a highly technical article on the latest global economic movements, silence may be your best option. 

It also depends on your choice of music.  Some research suggests music can distract and obstruct the cognitive functions.  This would have a detrimental impact on your reading experience. 

Other research claim music can enhance one's experience while reading.  While it is not conclusively proven which is correct, it is safe to conclude complementary genres of music, such as classical or sounds from nature, would be more conducive to reading.  As opposed to heavy metal or fast-paced techno beats. 

Here are a few tips on the best practices for listening to music while reading:

  • We recommend minimizing listening to music with lyrics or narrative.  This is because, even though you may think you have the willpower to block out the lyrics, your subconscious will be listening.  Ultimately, you will find yourself distracted. 
  • Besides wordless music, we advise that you should keep the music volume levels at a moderate level.  Try maintaining a level equivalent to background music.  Enough to hear the melodies, but not loud enough to be intrusive and disrupt your train of thought.

So now that we have set the rules for the type and volume of music to listen to while reading, let us look at what is the best music to listen to while reading. 


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What is the best music to listen while reading

Now you know 'how' to listen to music when reading, let's go over some of our top recommendations for the best music to listen to while reading.  

Listening to CLASSICAL music while reading

For those of you who a partial to a bit of classical music, try this eclectic mix of famous pieces.  There is nothing better to get you in a reading mood than a hot cup of Earl Grey and the flowing sounds of beautiful instrumentals in the background. 

In fact, research has shown that classical music can improve your mood by raising dopamine levels.  Resulting in an enhanced reading experience. 


Listening to NATURES sound while reading

Another genre of music that many of our readers respond to is sounds of nature.  Think back to moments when you have been completely absorbed in a book.  Now recall the setting you were in.  Were you on a veranda on a beautiful summer's evening with a gentle breeze rustling through the leaves? Or maybe you were cuddled up under a blanket on a rainy day, listening to the soft tapping of the raindrops on the window. 

Whatever your fondest reading memories may be, you can try recreating the ambiance with these sound tracks:


Listening to White Noise while reading

Although not the first music you think of when considering your options, white noise can be a very effective genre to listen to when reading. 

If you are not familiar with white noise, they are generally characterized by having a consistent repetitive sound.  The purpose of the low hum is to block out external noises that may distract you and break your concentration.  
The types of music that fall into this category are sounds such as cafe ambiance, some nature sounds like a gurgle of a babbling brook and even some low key jazz music. 


Types of Music to Listen for BETTER READING

Have you ever felt like you just want to get into a good book with NO DISTRACTIONS.  Or maybe you are reading something that requires more concentration.  Then your solution for the best music to listen to while reading may be BINAURAL BEATS.  

Binaural Beats are:

a form of brainwave entrainment using headphones to listen to a professionally produced binaural beat audio file.  

When your brain is presented with two different frequencies, it creates an imaginary tone to compensate for the differences in the tones. This is what we call a binaural beat.

For example, let's say you listen to a frequency in your right ear at 440hz, and you listen to a frequency of 400hz in your left ear. Your brain will automatically compensate for the difference and produce a binaural beat of 40hz.

Research has shown by manipulating the frequencies a person listens to, you can alter their mental and physical awareness.

We have an in-depth series on the power of binaural beats.  The series covers the basics of explaining what exactly binaural beats are.  We also explore the benefits you can expect and the applications or use cases of when to use binaural beats.  If you are interested in exploring binaural beats further we recommend starting here - HOW BINAURAL BEATS WORK


Hopefully by now we have answered the question...Can you listen to music while reading?   The answer is it depends on the music.  Generally, listening to classical music while reading, doesn't distract you and can enhance the experience.  We listed our favorites for the best music to listen to while reading for you to discover and create your own list.  

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