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What music to listen to while you draw. Can music enhance your artistic creation?

What kind of music to listen to while drawing.  Do you listen to music when you draw? What music to listen to while you draw? Can music enhance your artistic creation?
I would like to think so...hope that any cool music to listen to while you draw would inspire.
Many e-mails I received ask me about do I listen to music while I draw.
Yes, 80% of the time and the other 20% is silent...depending on where I am.

And Specialists from the fields of music, neuroscience, psychology, and neurology describe advances in understanding the complex relationship between music and the brain. Intended for psychologists and neuroscientists, contributions address the origins of music, the musical mind, the neurons of music, musical brain substrates, musical expertise and brain plasticity, and the relation of music to other cognitive domains.

Listening to, in particular, classical and instrumental music, has recently been thought to enhance performance on cognitive tests. Contributors to this volume take a closer look at this assertion and their findings indicate that listening to any music that is personally enjoyable has positive effects on cognition. In addition, the use of music to enhance memory is explored and research suggests that musical recitation enhances the coding of information by activating neural networks in a more united and thus more optimal fashion.

-Source-ScienceDaily (June 22, 2006)

Here are the list of music I listen to while I am drawing: (I will keep add more to the list as I discover more cool stuff. :)

My favorite composers (These kind of music help me zone in from 0 to 100% within the matter of seconds, especially the heavy percussion ones. Give it a shot!)

-Hans Zimmer
The Dark Knight
Gladiator (I can listen to this all the time, never gets old)
Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End
Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl
The Last Samurai
Black Hawk Down
Mission: Impossible II

-Tyler Bates
300 Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

-Danny Elfman
Sleepy Hollow
Hellboy II: The Golden Army
Men in Black II
Planet of the Apes
Men in Black
Spider-Man 2
Mission Impossible
-John Williams
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone: "Hedwig's Theme"
Star Wars: A New Hope
Star Wars: The Phantom Menace
Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith
Spider-Man 2
Raiders of the Lost Ark
A.I.: Artificial Intelligence
Schindler's List
Jaws: "Main Theme"
Superman: "Main Theme"

-Graeme Revell
Chronicles Of Riddick Soundtrack
The Crow
Freddy vs. Jason (2003) *Apparently I own it, and it's good.
Pitch Black
The Siege

-James Newton Howard
-The Devil's Advocate
-The Sixth Sense
-The Interpreter
-King Kong

-Astraud Piazzola

-Astrud Gilberto (Stan Getz)

I believe music can be an important inspiration component to infuse your certain element you want to convey (so does silent once in a while). You absorb tones and mostly what I listen to doesn't contain any lyrics because personally it can be distraction so the list of music provided here most of them doesn't have lyrics though some do...occasionally, but some I don't even know what they were talking about and that's good I think...I just absorb their energy and pass along thru my art if needed.


Recommended by OUR readers and Friends!**Also read their comment below there are some good tips and useful stuff there.

-Fable's OST
-Buddha Bar of Café Del Mar
-Jimi Hendrix (all of them!)
-Radiohead (Radiohead's Kid A and Amnesiac albums)
-Tool (Lateralus and 10,000 Days)
-Muse, Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, Coheed and Cambria.
-Chopin's Piano Concertos
-Zap Mama and other neo-soul music
-Blackalicious "Nia"
-The Grouch and Eligh "No More Greener Grasses"
-Living Legends
-Megadeth and Metallica
-Smashing Pumpkin listen here (The Beginning is the End is the Beginning)
-Wipeout 2097
-The Life Aquatic's
-Alice in Chain (Oh yeah!)
-System of the down
Sashsa - Invlover, Airdrawndagger
-Muffler - Sighco Show
-Black Sun Empire - Cruel and Unusual, Driving insane, Endangered species
-Hybrid - I choose Noise, Y4k, and Wide Angle
-Global Underground Electric Calm 1-4
-Random Rab - Elucidation of Sorrow and Epicycle
-Tipper - The Critical Path, Relish the through
- Lounge and Nu Jazz Cafe, similar to Buddah bar

*More to be added


Knuckles930 said…
Most of the time I listen to Buddha Bar of Café Del Mar. But music from games can be nice to like Fable's OST or something.
Chris Reeve said…
Hmm... well Hendrix surely has to be up there, shouldn't need to say why.

A few more personal choices that I'd suggest to others: Radiohead, Tool, Muse, Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, Coheed and Cambria.

I highly recommend Radiohead's Kid A and Amnesiac albums, and Tool's Lateralus and 10,000 Days. I get completely lost in my work with these.

Also any classical piano music keeps my mind whirring (Chopin's Piano Concertos)

Needless to say I find music very helpful, especially when there's 20 other students buzzing around.
Anonymous said…
I used to listen to Zap Mama and other neo-soul music when I created, then by accident this summer I discovered that listening to underground "conscious" hip-hop helps me lose any nervousness or inhibitions. My work evolves more naturally.
I highly recommend:
-Blackalicious "Nia"
-The Grouch and Eligh "No More Greener Grasses"
-Living Legends

The production is smooth and catchy, and if you happen to catch part of a lyric,it's always something that makes you proud to be an artist.
Josh said…
Yeh , music that creates atmosphere really helps. Most of the music Xia has listed is music that needed to add to the atmosphere of a scene in a movie. like make you feel happy or sad. So logically that music will help get your mind into an atmosphere :D

Im a bit strange in music i listen to when drawing. Sometimes atmospheric like Dreamtheatre :D, other times i just listen to regular old metal like Megadeth and Metallica. :D.. But it helps to pick music that lends to your theme. E.g if you were drawing a dude fighting another in a knife fight and its really intense. you would want intense , possibly angry music :D
idrawgirls said…
Knuckle>> Fable is awesome, now I have to find that Buddha Bar.

chris>> Hendrix is the MAN!!! Tool, Led-Zeppelin, and Black Sabbath are also high on my list (I am a metal head and industrial addicted)

Ano>> Nice good collection you recommended that, now I have to go get them for me.

Josh>> Good point, I totally agree, they put me in the dreamland zone quick. Metallica rules!!!

Though I am a metal head, but I listen to all kind, I also love HipHop/ Rap from the South (Ludacris, etc.) I get blown away by many talented musician out there.
Josh said…
I have to say, You're an awesome artist but knowing you are a metal head ... Just makes you all the more Awesomer!
idrawgirls said…
Thanks bro, but I am afraid I might be too old for the mosh-pit, I was a Korn and System of a Down concert two years was hardcore and I realize then that it's getting a bit difficult to handle so I stay away nowadays. :)
Chris Reeve said…
Sorry I have to add this:

When I was last at the cinema, The Watchmen trailer came on with this song booming and I thought it was just awesome. It's by the Smashing Pumpkins and has been remixed from an earlier version which was on the Batman and Robin soundtrack.
idrawgirls said…
Chris>> Smasing Pumpkin is BADASS!!! Wow I really like their new sound...a bit more industrial...the beat reminds me of Nine Inch Nails which I also love. I cannot wait for WatchMan!
Anonymous said…
If you need some high energy music, the "Wipeout XL" sound track works great.
Anonymous said…
Sorry that should be "Wipeout 2097"
idrawgirls said…
ano> thanks brother. I added it! Good stuff!
Anonymous said…
A good soundtrack is The Life Aquatic's.
idrawgirls said…
Ano> Yeah, I heard about that one from a colleague ! Never really listen to it, now I have to give it a shot. thanks, I will put it up!
Chris Reeve said…
Didn't realise this thread was still going (till I clicked the link on the right...).
Xia you mentioned them already but I think Nine Inch Nails should be up there too. Not all of their songs are good for concentrating with, but those that are work extremely well.

I strongly suggest though if anyone is feeling even the slightest bit down to not listen to a song by them called "Hurt". Johnny Cash covered it, his version is also awesome/depressing.

Personally I also find listening to Down and Alice In Chains can help me focus.
Kyle buhler said…
Not one electronic artist on here? I cant even hear Xia talk most the time over it on his downloads! I think electronic mixes are the best by far, because they don't break your groove when the song changes, and is mainly instrumental to keep your brain in right brain mode.

There is way to much to name, but here are a few I keep in heavy rotation:

Sashsa - Invlover, Airdrawndagger

Muffler - Sighco Show

Black Sun Empire - Cruel and Unusual, Driving insane, Endangered species

Hybrid - I choose Noise, Y4k, and Wide Angle

Global Underground Electric Calm 1-4

Random Rab - Elucidation of Sorrow and Epicycle

Tipper - The Critical Path, Relish the through

I also like Erotic Lounge and Nu Jazz Cafe, similar to Buddah bar
idrawgirls said…
Chris> Oh yeah! It's still going. I just post something about Tango and Piazzolla also. :) Good choices BTW.
Kyle Buhler> Great choice s of music by far. Most of techno I listen to are underground and free download these day...they are not big time. I do like Front242, My life with Thrill Kill Kult, etc.
Now I am going to have to do research on the list you put there. :) groovy!
Anonymous said…
Hi Xia ,
I think u would love "James Newton Howard" .
idrawgirls said…
rahul> Yes, I do...I have a few of his cds. Lords of the ring, King Kong, the Sixth sense, etc.
Thanks for reminding me. :)
Chris Reeve said…
Testament should be up there.
Anonymous said…
* Necro Bump *

When you get a chance you have to listen to Hans Zimmer 's Thin Red Line Soundtrack - One of My All Time Favorite CDs to listen to when i want to paint :)
idrawgirls said…
Necro Bump?

Yeah, I think I used to have that soundtrack on CD. It was awesome, especially the ending theme.
Mike W said…
I'll be listening to Synaesthesia.
It's a side project by the guys from Front Line Assembly. Ambient sounds, very laid back.
Anonymous said…
The Elder Scrolls Oblivion Soundtrack is pretty epic. I recommend it.
Sam said…
I'd recommend the Shadow of the colossus soundtrack. Very inspirational for when im drawing or painting fantasy characters, especially enviroments. It's a pro mood-setter.
Anonymous said…
Hmmm, most time Metal or Gothic, sometimes Soundtracks.
I like the dark ones...
Robert said…
thanks for great drawing (and music) tips. I couldn't be concentrated for drawing without music :)

My tip for very inspirational music is "post-rock/ambient" band
"Godspeed You! Black Emperor"
(interesting name, isn't it?). For example their awesome song Moya, that is one of their shorter master-pieces, mostly they have about 20min. long songs. Their music is very unique and specific.

So you can listen Moya here:

If someone would be interested in this really uncommon band, you can get more info at:!+Black+Emperor
zzman said…
morrowind title theme its awsome!!!

And The Beatles XD
I see you added jimi hendrix ;)
idrawgirls said…
Wow! We have a pretty good list over here thanks for the contribution!
As of now, Im listening to "Gear of War I & II" Soundtrack, pretty badass. And 300 soundtrack!!!
Marko said…
heh i like ur drawings and ur music taste but i dont see conan(first movie with terminator guy^^) soundtrack! chek it out its great... makes good fantasy atmosphere^^!

p.s. there are few instrumental music that i would recommend : `grails`, `do make say think`, `mogwai`, `holst: the planets^^`...
VZmaster said…
please name the background music in silk spectre video here
idrawgirls said…
Marko> Yes!!! Awesome soundtrack!

VZmaster> Most of the music I use in my video are creative common lincense, they were made by various independent artists. And most of the time, I just randomly download them without knowing who they are. So no luck there. :)
Marko said…
here is link for one great anonimus bend monera from serbia!enjoy!
VZmaster said…
can you give a try to find it? if not the name then maybe the file? or album, artist, link?
or hires version of the video where words of song sounds more clearly? then i could try to find it by lyrics.
me9a7 said…
Nice list here :)
i'd like to add mine too if you guys don't mind.

-Temple of the dog

theres a few more but i think this is what i often listen to. enjoy! :)
idrawgirls said…
Sweet guys! MORE!
Been recently listening to a few soundtrack that hype the drawing and painting up
- 300
- Gears of War 2

BadAss composers!
Try them out!
Anonymous said…
Ennio Morricone
Anonymous said…
Some great tracks for drawing epic landscapes and fantasy characters in my opinion are the ones listed below:

Gregorian - The moment of peace
Emma Shapplin - La notte etterna
Cecilia - Love of a silent moon
Lord of the rings - Requiem for a dream
E nomine - Fundamentum

you can also check those groups: Enya, Enigma, Bond
Lila said…
Cowbow bebop OST
Lady vengeance OST
Kill Bill OST
idrawgirls said…
Ah man! Thx guys, these are great list!!!

Now I'm onto
Gotan Project
"Dead Space" Soundtrack...pretty creepy...but really get you going.
Anonymous said…
How could anyone forget the Guild Wars and Elder Scrolls soundtracks by Jeremy Soule!? I think they are splendid and just wonderful!
idrawgirls said…
Ano> Oh yeah, Jeremy Soule! yes! Also I love Gear of Wars I, II and Dead Space!
Anonymous said…
Well, i guess you might like Benny Goodman - a great jazzmaster; here we have "All the cats join in"

its great to listen and draw with this song!
soulundoneART said…
i think it depends on what you're painting at that moment, i like to listen: Hocico - Spirals Of Time
Gothminister - Sideshow
Sybreed - In The Cold Light
In Flames - Free Fall
In Flames - Cloud Connected
idrawgirls said…
Sweet! the more the merrier! Thanks guys! :)
Anonymous said…
Various game/movie soundtracks and purely instrumental, even trance. I highly recommend Trine-soundtrack. Basically whatever that doesn't include vocals lets you focus on your work and not the words, for me anyway.
idrawgirls said…
@Ano Right! Yeah I just got soundtrack from Gears of War 2, Prince of Persia, Halo 2, Assasin Creed 2 and Inception. Great and also another band called "Beats Antique" great techno blend with middle eastern Persian instruments. Cool stuff
Suspect said…
Strange that no one has mentioned Yanni. Great musician, better music to listen to while drawing or even w/e is hard to find. I recommend that you guys youtube him.
AvP said…
I listen to a lot of Vangelis especially the 'Bladerunner soundtrack' which is a favourite!
Computer112 said…
We have some similar tastes of music. Cheer to film and game music!

If you want epic music similar to Hans Zimmer's stuff, check out trailer music from Two Steps From Hell and X-Ray Dog.

Most of the time I listen to contemporary and new age music from composers like Ludovico Einaudi and John Adams.

Hans Zimmer's music is wicked! Scores from The Dark Knight, Black Hawk Down and Inception are few of my most favorite ever. James Newton Howard and Graeme Revell music also great, especially during drawing stuff.

There are many great new film composers like Bryan Tyler, Ramin Djawadi, Steve Jablonsky and Jesper Kyd.

Good day! Thank you for your tutorials so much!