Music and Creativity — The Soundtrack of Our Lives

music-clipart-music-notes-Clip-art-428x150I don’t really know when television shows began using popular music as a backdrop or a soundtrack to bolster the story line but I can say that a lot of the music I listen to today I first heard on television. When a catchy tune begins to roll in the background, I will often turn to Google on my iPhone in order to find out what the song is. And since much of what I watch is streamed and a few days late, the online playlists seem to be up to date and accurate. Of course I end up downloading the songs I like from iTunes for .99 cents and transferring them to my iPod or computer in order to enjoy them later.

I have often wondered what the soundtrack to my life would sound like if I were to compile one. It would no doubt include some Miles Davis, Bob Dylan, Pete Seeger and some Bach, Beethoven and Mahler just to even things out. I love music by Allison Krause, Joni Mitchell and Billie Holiday as well. Now that I think about it, I would probably have to limit my life’s soundtrack to 15 songs or less.

Many of the workshop instructors we host here at Cheap Joe’s play music in the background while the students paint. Walking into a class of twenty-five students who are quietly working while listening to music in the background is an almost magical event.

Thinking about music and how it ties into creativity got me thinking about what I listen to when I want to be inspired. Three of those songs are linked to YouTube at the bottom of this post.

What I would like to see (and hear) are your thoughts on music and creativity and hopefully you can share with us the music you listen to while painting or otherwise creating. Feel free to copy and paste links to your favorite songs in the reply section if in the Cheap Joe’s Sketchbook section of our web site or in the comments section if on Facebook.



4 Responses

  1. Len Millward
    November 19, 2016 at 7:33 pm | Reply

    I love this way of thinking! I offered an alternative, and that is watch a video and take notes. It may just bring out some hidden ideas you have about what you can create! When you add music to the mix, it takes you to a customised place with the help of your choice music. Please check out the website and view the samples to see what you think. You can turn down the sound and add your own for the full effect.

  2. Tan'a
    November 30, 2016 at 9:01 am | Reply

    Music definitely influences my art, and my favorites right now to listen to are tycho, and four tet. Thanks for the recommendations!

  3. Jana Parkin
    December 9, 2016 at 10:10 am | Reply

    I’m a believer! I’ve done this ever since college, and I think it makes a big difference. I try to think of the perfect soundtrack for the kind of piece I’m trying to create. When I was illustrating a Christmas book, I listened to Christmas music 24/7, even though it was the middle of summer! For my loose watercolors, jazz works best. I also love classical. I love Keith Jarret’s Koln concert (above). Also “As Falls Witchita, so Falls Witchita Falls” by Pat Metheny. And a new favorite: Emily Bear. Ennui Moreicone film music is wonderful, and I also listen to a lot of YoYo Ma. His cello is both soothing and energizing. But the best was when my son (who studied music, psychology and film in college) wrote me a song for Christmas because he wanted tot write something I could paint to. A gift I’ll never forget.

  4. Gavin
    September 2, 2017 at 8:40 pm | Reply

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