Monday, September 24, 2012

Music to Live By

When your taste in music varies as much as mine does, there's no explaining it in a single sentence.  It's easier to break it down by time of day, mood and activity.  

Here's how my life can be explained in music.  

When I’m on a short run…
This is when I like to go faster.  I’m either doing speed work preparing for a race, want to burn more calories bc I’m out for a shorter amount of time, or just want an energy boost…so songs end up sounding like this:
1. I’m Not in Love by Crystal Castles   (feat. Robert Smith from The Cure)
2.  Lights by Ellie Goulding  (there is a much better version out there with much more incredible beats…look for it!)
3. Chapel Song by We Are Augustines (recommended by Meggie!)
5. Wish by Nine Inch Nails  (warning: not a pleasant video...but a great song. Do NOT judge. I've loved this song since middle school)
6. Raise Your Weapon by deadmau5  

I am always on the lookout for new fast-tempo songs that will energize my runs--especially  when a race is coming up.  As I find new ones, I'll share them...perhaps this Saturday after I complete my first race of the new season, Tipitina's Rhythm & Blues 5K.  

When I’m on a long run
I mostly prefer instrumental songs.  I may choose artists known for their ambient tunes or--embarrassing reveal--film scores.  The point is, lyrics distract me from my own thinking.  I love to use my long runs for mental cleaning…I organize my ideas & tasks, calm my worries and clear out the mess. Songs with lyrics tend to mess things up in there.  
3.  Time by Hans Zimmer from one of my favorite movies of all time: Inception.

If I'm in the mood for lyrics but want to enjoy the run, I might choose songs like these:
1. Weird Fishes by Radiohead
2. Flying Over Bus Stops by Athlete
3. Lifeline by Angels & Airwaves
4. Untitled by Interpol

The rest of the time, I’m listening to an audio book because, let’s be honest, it kills two birds: I’m reading AND I’m exercising.  

When I’m in my car…
Honestly…I really just listen to NPR or books on CD.  I wish I could say that I have a "start-my-day" song that I listen to before work, but really, I'm in no mood for tunes first thing in the morning. I like talk. I like information. 
I’m currently listening to In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan.  

HOWEVER--If I’m on a long road trip and need to stay awake, I turn my husband’s satelllite radio to a techno station and try to dance or fist-pump in my seat…or I just pull over and tell him it’s his turn to drive.

When I’m working in my home office…(see also: "When I'm cleaning or organizing") 
This is another time I like no lyrics--especially at times like these.  Classical music and beautiful film scores work best for me.  This got me through 2 years of writing online discussion posts and research papers while I completed my master's degree. 
1. See You Again by Mychael Danna.  This is from the movie, The Time Traveler's Wife.  Not my favorite movie, but it happens to be my favorite  book.  
2. Suite Bergamasque - 3. Clair de Lune (this is one of the most beautiful songs I've ever heard)  
3. For the Love of a Princess by James Horner (Braveheart soundtrack)
4. Main Title from The Notebook...I'm no longer embarrassed by my movie theme just get used to it.
5. May it Be by Enya from Lord of the Rings. You can thank my husband for this one. The movie, not the song.

When I’m cleaning or organizing…
I can't explain this one. My mom certainly didn't clean to this sort of music growing up (that's when she decided she liked country music one day), and it doesn't pump you up or anything.  This is just what ends up on Pandora. It's a mystery why songs like these make me so focused and ready to beautify my surroundings.
This list could go on and's the one genre that has been a constant in my life. 

I did mention in my original post that I was an old soul.   

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