Ummm sounds weird right?
What does my bullet journal have to do with listening to music?
Let's start from the beginning.
I'm a big music buff. I love discovering new artists and proving to myself that yes, Alternative Rock is indeed the genre for me.
While I'm not like the biggest music fan there could be out there, I'm not even trying to be that, I guess. I'm just your average music enthusiast who really likes listening to music and trying to discover more everyday.
And what has helped me streamline this discovery and encourage this enthusiasm is bullet journalling. In this blogpost, I'll take you through how exactly it has helped me and also leave you with a few non-bujo tips which I find useful for music discovery.
Bullet journalling and music:
Adding it to your habit tracker One of the ways to indulge in your interests is to find consistency or repetition in them. Adding 'listening to music' or 'discover a song' to your habit tracker is a great way to listen to more music. Firstly, by adding it to your habit tracker, you are making it an intentional action. This means that you are acknowledging that it is an important thing for you in your life. Secondly, when you add it to your habit tracker, you will consciously start to make time for it in your everyday life.
Making a 'new song of the day' spread: I tried this out for September 2020 when I realised I'd been listening to all of my usual tracks over and over again and I'd started getting bored with the same playlist. So I made a log for 30 days of the month and everyday I tried to listen to one new song and tried to note down what it was. It turned out to be quite an interesting collection!
Writing down all your favourite artists in one place: For October 2020, I made a spread called 'rediscovering my favourite artists' and I made a list of all my favourite bands and artists. Everyday, I would choose one of them and listen to their albums the whole day. This created a different vibe for each of my days in October. I also rediscovered so many forgotten tracks and found out so many new ones from the artists I've loved over the years.
Taking up different music challenges for the month in your bullet journal: For November I tried listening to one new album everyday. Ofcourse, there were a few days when I slacked off, but that's quite okay. I discovered and rediscovered quite a few good albums. Albums are very interesting to me because often they'll have a common theme/ hidden meanings or similar music style stringing them together and that's so fun to notice.
Here are some ideas for monthly music challenges if you're interested:
Listen to one new artist every day.
Listen to one new genre of music every day (I'm very excited to take up this one!)
Listen to a a song in a different language everyday
Listen to a song from a different country everyday (challenge 3 and 4 can in fact go together as well)
Ask all your friends and family/ or through social media for recommendations. Listen to one recommendation every day.
Let me know if you try any of these challenges. You can tag @saveourselvesblog on Instagram if you post about it.
My tips for music enthusiasts:
Shazam is your best friend. Shazam is an app that'll listen to songs playing in your surroundings (in cafes/ malls, radio, etc) and identify it for you. It also has an Auto-Shazam mode which comes in handy when you go out. It'll automatically identify all the songs for you. This lets you go back and search for any songs you might have liked and would have wanted to add to your playlist.
Don't restrict to a single music app. Why? The algorithm. I absolutely love the fact that music apps suggest songs based on what you're listening to. What I've found though is that even if I listen to the same songs on different apps, the suggestions I would get from them would be different. And that happens due to the algorithm. So why not let these apps do their work and let the algorithm work in your favour to discover new music. I personally use Spotify the most, followed by Youtube Music and Saavn.
Take advantage of the custom-made playlists these apps will make for you. So since I use Spotify a lot, let me tell you how that works. Based on your listening, Spotify will make 6 daily mixes for you. Typically the playlists are categorised by genres. I love this because usually a genre creates a certain mood for me and that's how I like to listen to songs as well. Secondly, these playlists consist of songs that you listen to on a regular basis and also newer songs belonging to the same mood/genre. So it makes it very easy for you to discover new music just by browsing through these playlists.
See what your friends/ people you know are listening to: We all have friends we bond with, over music. Sharing new music with them, getting to know about what their current favourite tracks are just immerses you in the whole experience and gives you new, good songs to listen to.
Follow record labels/ artists on Youtube and their social media: Record labels usually put out their music videos and tracks on Youtube. If you start checking those out, the algorithm will automatically start feeding you new music from similar labels/ artists.
Music I typically listen to:
Alternative rock - this is my absolute favourite type of music and some of the tracks from Coldplay, Bastille, Imagine Dragons, Alt-J, One Republic, Poets of the Fall, etc falls into this category. These artists are some of my all time favourite as well.
Vocal-heavy pop - While pop music lives for a very short time in my playlists, tracks that become evergreen are the ones that are outstanding with their vocals. So think of Sia, Sam Smith, Bruno Mars, etc.
Lofi / chill music - The world is slowly catching on to this trend since the pandemic, but this music consists of soft beats and light instruments, sometimes with a fusion of everyday life sounds. The Jazz Hop Cafe is a lofi record label I really love. Chilled Cow is another artist who makes great lofi music. The best thing about this genre is that it is perfect for studying/ working/ reading or creating a very nice ambience in your home. Its my most listened to genre for sure.
Soft house/ soft electronic - Similar to mainstream pop, hardcore EDM or trance music is very mood-specific for me and will come and go in phases. But what I love for a more regular listening is the toned down, washed version of this genre. That is soft house or soft electronic. Kygo, Avicii, Robin Schulz, Nora En Pure are some of the soft electonic/ house artists I enjoy.
My jams - Ofcourse, when it comes to hosting daily concerts in the shower, I am all for the thoroughly loved, classic tracks. They come mostly from the first 2 genres I mentioned. I love finding songs I can sing along too.
Music in company - What I listen to by myself and when I'm with people is completely different. Usually I don't like to enforce my music taste onto others so I prefer listening to what they want to - which also gives me an opportunity to find some new music. These tracks range from classic Bollywood dance songs to Indie music to hardcore party EDM songs. Which I think are perfect for groups or to listen to with friends.
I hope you found this blogpost to be helpful! Let me how you discover music and what you're currently listening to in the comments below!
I'll see you in the next post. Have a great week!