My Biggest Music Influencers

My Biggest Music Influencers

Late last year, Spotify listeners may have noticed that the app compiled a list of your most listened to songs of 2016. 

I had a look at mine and the results weren't particularly surprising... after all these were tracks I've listened to a lot over the year. However, once I started to analyse my listening habits it started to get more interesting. 

I've always known that I like music that has been used on TV and Film, or pieces that have been used at dramatic moments in my own life, but I didn't realised to what extent. Almost all the music I listen to regularly has some kind of emotional resonance attached to it.

There's been research to suggest that in general, women have much better 'episodic memory' than men. For example when recalling information women tend to remember things by the context or how they felt (emotionally) during the time (whereas men recall much better visually).

I wonder if this has something to do with why certain songs end up in my playlists. I looked through my top songs again and I do seem to favour listening to things based on how I felt when I first heard it. 

Here's a list things that have influenced my music choices this year. 

Warrington Wolves:

One of the top tracks I listened to last year was 'Swings & Waterslides' by Viola Beach. Viola Beach were a local band who tragically lost their lives in February this year when all four of them, and their manager died in a car crash. 

Warrington Wolves, for those who don't know, are a rugby team I support and they put on a touching tribute to the boys early in the season. They continued to play 'Swings & Waterslides' and later 'Boys Who Sing' after every home match. 

The team had a particularly successful season, so the song always made me happy when it was played. 


Top Gear

There's a lot of music used in Top Gear in my playlist, and that has a lot to do with how it's used on the programme - i.e in conjunction with dramatic shots and scenes (especially the race stuff). 

However my favourite, and most listened to piece of music that was used in Top Gear is Max Richter's Infra 5 used in the below clip.

Other TV shows

Turns out a lot of my playlists are made up of music that has been used in TV shows. In fact, I wrote a piece a while back that has some great examples.

Here's a list of some of my favourites, and where they were used. 

Game of Thrones

Friday Night Lights

Mr Robot

The Playlist

Here's the full list of my most listened to songs of last year. 

8 Things You May Have Wondered About Graphic Design

8 Things You May Have Wondered About Graphic Design

I'm not talented... and neither is Mo Farrah

I'm not talented... and neither is Mo Farrah