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New Poll: Do you listen to music while you work?

Published by Chris Coyier

Just a fun little poll to start a conversation about music and working. I know people firmly on either side of this poll: those that never ever listen to anything and those that can't work without it.

Where do you land? (Poll in the sidebar)-
And as an extension for the comment thread: how do you do it when you do? iTunes? a web service? Stereo elsewhere in the room not even connected to your computer? IN-HOUSE MARIACHI BAND?


  1. I use either, Google Music, or iTunes if i’m home.

  2. Permalink to comment#

    I always listen to music. Music makes my mind free of distraction and makes my work flow so much smoother. As far as way I use… I enjoy!!! Create your own playlist and listen to only what you want… By far better then pandora

    • Permalink to comment#

      I’m with Will, Grooveshark is where it is at. Best thing since toast. I cant listen to anything too heavy and distracting but some lighter rock while coding up something really makes whatever your doing so much more fun.

    • Carolyn
      Permalink to comment#

      Well, Pandora is good for days that you just need background music…I have an amazing station based upon Queen’s music (that ends up being a mostly Beatles station, but I digress) that’s great for work when you need to just concentrate on what you’re doing.

      For the days I want to manage my playlist, I really like MOG.

    • Nick
      Permalink to comment#

      I think lissening to muisc is a why to work harder

  3. Whenever my boss isn’t in our office (during his lunch and extended time out of the office dealing with clients) I pump this

  4. Spotify all day. Literally.

  5. Depends, using Mac, it’s iTunes. On Linux , it is Gpodder or Amarok.

  6. Absolutely – and I find that using headphones is even better for focus and reducing distractions.

    Love Pandora and others, but nothing beats my own playlists.

  7. Permalink to comment#

    Love to listen to music, or if I don’t have to concentrate I’ll listen to audiobooks or podcasts… like the ShopTalkShow. :D

  8. Ryan Tait
    Permalink to comment#

    Grooveshark all day everyday ;)

  9. I listen most of the time. I keep one earbud in and one out to hear conversations around me.

    I use Spotify.

  10. Sometimes I forget the phones playng on the table. I like Grooveshark, and recently found a good local news radio website.

  11. I have to listen to music while I work… I use Spotify!

  12. Permalink to comment#

    At our office everyone gets a chance to show-off their favourite songs. we use Grovshark, we also have our own collections on our pcs/laptops and youtube.
    I like instrumentals though.

    Sometimes when I need to work something out and I need concentration, I want pin-drop silence but mostly I like music on with volume low.

  13. Steve
    Permalink to comment#

    Spotify + Earbuds FTW. Only way I can concentrate.

  14. Grooveshark helps me focus on my code.

    Man, I wish I had an in-house mariachi band. Or rather change it to an in-house metal band. Downside: I’d be the only one in that room that is going to be productive.

  15. I work in group of 5 guys and mostly we like work listening to music.

  16. Yes, almost always. Spotify, 8tracks and Designers.MX are my standard go to music-listening-apps.

  17. Sean
    Permalink to comment#

    I usually listen to music in iTunes but some times use Spotify. Since I work from home I even watch/listen to shows on Netflix while I work from time to time.

  18. $("sam").code();
    Permalink to comment#

    I listen to music using Spotify and a sonos hooked up with speakers. It gives me instant control and unlimited cheap music. I tend to listen to stuff that doesn’t have words when coding, because it distracts me. That generally means dubstep or electrohouse-type stuff. Sometimes I use Pandora to find new music, but it’s typically Spotify.

  19. Pandora, paid upgrade, all day. Different stations depending on my mood. I’m getting a bit tired of it, but I’m too lazy to develop my own playlists…. so I just keep adding channels.

  20. Just about always listen while working. Either iTunes or music via

  21. Permalink to comment#

    Rdio or actual radio. (NPR or OpenAir CPR)

  22. Steve
    Permalink to comment#

    Spotify is a great choice. The free version has add but it allows you to listen to full albums, sometimes it’s an all “Journey” day to make the productivity flow…

  23. ngryman
    Permalink to comment#
    while (!me.sleeping) me.listen(spotify)

    Also a good playlist for coding by @aerotwist :

  24. Yep! But only music: I find it distracting to listen to someone talking while I code, but singing is fine. I’ve actually made two blog posts on the subject, highlighting my favorite sources for sounds: “Music To Code By”, Volumes One & Two.

  25. Aaron
    Permalink to comment#

    iTunes Radio, usually Classical or Classic Jazz. Keeps me focused and on task!

  26. Jeremy T
    Permalink to comment#

    I almost always have something in my ears, whether it’s a baseball game, a podcast , music from my phone, pandora, or turntable

  27. Kevin R
    Permalink to comment#

    I am a little weird when it comes to this. I have to listen to music, but it can’t be music with words in it. It’s generally classical or jazz. Pandora is good for those two genres, but there is a ton of stuff in my iTunes that I use.

  28. Permalink to comment#

    Music help to seperate me from external trifles, and I can write codes better. is a good music site.

  29. Permalink to comment#

    Poll in the sidebar, not awesome on my phone.

    And music always.

  30. Design work always needs a soundtrack, but I have a special coding playlist that has music with no words. It consists mostly of soundtracks from movies about successful nerds like The Social Network, TRON and A Beautiful Mind.

  31. I need to listen to something while I work, either music or podcasts. Depends on how much focus I need. If I’m doing something that requires a lot of reading, or processing information, I’ll usually put on some tunes. If it’s more automatic, things that don’t necessarily require a lot of concentration, I’ll listen to podcasts instead.

    And if I’m debugging IE problems, it’s time for my angry music. :-)

  32. Permalink to comment#

    I think for light design work and CSS stuff, any music is fine (I use iTunes). But if I’m getting into heavier JavaScript stuff, or if I’m reading/researching, anything with lyrics is going to distract me and break my concentration (especially if I know the songs, because I want to sing along!).

    So I would say instrumentals would be better for programming and any music is good for lighter work that isn’t too mathematical or structured.

  33. Music when browsing, checking email, etc.

    Ambient/Lounge/Chillout music with low volume when working on something that doesn’t require much concentration.

    Silence when coding. Have to be fully concentrated.

  34. Ederson F.
    Permalink to comment#

    Grooveshark, and my mp3’s.

  35. Permalink to comment#

    Yes, unless the project requires concentration. From classical to the melvins…

  36. I always listen to music when working. We’ve gotten comments in our office (3 coders and a graphics guy) that we are extremely quite because we all have headphones on. I think music and what I’m listening to plays a big role in my productivity for the day. I pretty much only listen to Spotify now days with a little radio here and there to discover some new music.

  37. Always

    Feels like something is missing without it

    I like hearing entire albums so it’s my MP3 collection for me, though sometimes I do just let it randomize

  38. Permalink to comment#

    Most of the time. I can recommend TripHop.

  39. Matt
    Permalink to comment#

    80% – Artists I subscribe to on Soundcloud.

    15% – Music from my collection

    5% – Other (iTunes, Pandora, SiriusXM, etc.)

    BTW, I really enjoyed your talk at WCSF.

  40. Arsen
    Permalink to comment#

    Yes, listen to music all the time while working.

  41. Zachary
    Permalink to comment#

    It depends on the situation, but I prefer to listen to music, I am much more productive working to a good beat. I use to run into the 40 hour monthly limit that Pandora had often.

  42. Bravo
    Permalink to comment#

    I listen to ShopTalk episodes over and over and over and over again :D

  43. Terry
    Permalink to comment#

    Yes, I pretty much listen to a combination of Spotify and at work all Day.

  44. 1) Spotify
    2) Songza
    3) Mixtapesand/or podcasts on Google Music
    4) Soundcloud

  45. Itunes or AIMP3, rock, hip-hop, alternative, soundtracks for relax.

  46. Phil D
    Permalink to comment#

    Been a pro muso for 15 years &
    it’s difficult to focus on anything other than the music

    So when code is involved Silence is my favourite song

  47. Permalink to comment#

    I like turn the headphone volume up to maximum so that I can’t hear any other voice

  48. I usually alternate between music and podcast depending on what I am designing or coding.

  49. We listen to digital radio / Spotify / iPod. I think music helps when designing, but can be distracting sometimes when coding or problem solving.

  50. Permalink to comment#

    I either listen to music (radio website, pandora) or (usually) podcasts on my phone or being recorded live on TWiT.

  51. jamie
    Permalink to comment#

    music distracts me way too much unless its noise or electronic.. nothing too catchy or with vocals. too hard to concentrate on coding, but for design or production/entering content or other automated stuff, yeah, most of the time. usually youtube playlists or lists i made outside of work.

    ps, “sidebar” comes very last on the mobile site ;)

  52. There’s a nice player wich has some radio stations like and some more, it’s clementine and it’s multi-plattform.

  53. Grooveshark and

  54. Spotify (hacked) or MP3.

  55. Anthony
    Permalink to comment#

    I listen to music while working most of the time. It helps me to get “in the zone” and having my headphones in also serves as a good defence against people who seem to think I can write an application while having a conversation every 2 minutes.

    I pretty much always listen to Spotify

  56. I’ve created a few mixes on 8tracks that I listen to regularly. If not I’m on Grooveshark. I’m always listening to ambient or instrumental music while designing/coding.

  57. Ryan
    Permalink to comment#

    All the time!

    I’m giving rdio a whirl these days, it does the job nicely, though I wish it had better genre filtering.

  58. Tyler
    Permalink to comment#

    I listen to some “Pink Noise” from

    It’s really annoying for the first few minutes then you love it…Crazy….

  59. kraymond70
    Permalink to comment#

    Often, and it is especially music on my own disk :)
    But sometimes youtube :P

  60. Grooveshark! n_n

  61. Yes, Yes, Yes! I never tire of my iTunes library, and when I do, it’s off to SoundCloud!

  62. I use Grooveshark or YouTube.

    Sometimes I have headphones on + no music.
    So people do not talk to me and I can work longer uninterrupted.

    Coding @work = no music or quiet one :

    Coding @home = heavy metal !

  63. Life without music would be a mistake.

  64. sage
    Permalink to comment#

    I really CAN’T work with music in my ears. I can’t focus. When someone around me is listening music, I have trouble finding my words when speaking, I need a lot of efforts to conceptualize things. It’s really handicapping.

  65. Always, the hole day my player is runing, mostly iTunes and sometimes Spotify.

  66. Permalink to comment#

    Spotify, whenever I really need to focus and not talk to anyone. I’d say about 1/4-1/3 of the time.

  67. Permalink to comment#

    Spotify all day long more or less! Own playlists or radio, but MAN now you made me want an inhouse mariachi band. :(

  68. I listen to music only when I want to concentrate – it focuses me – I find I don’t really listen to the tunes but its a wall of sound that doesnt distract me. I often choose tracks / artists with a high beat rate if I need to get stuff done. I use an iPhone with in-ear headphones and either listen to iTunes or Spotify (premium account do if something comes into my head I can find and play it). I think of this as a work tool the same as a pen. Good question Chris!

  69. Never. Can’t concentrate when listening to music. But it’s different when I draw. Then I really need music, because otherwise it’s too quiet. In this case I use Spotify 99% of the time, either the iPhone App itself or SpotOn Radio.

  70. Permalink to comment#

    Half Spotify, half Deezer…
    Listening to tracks with no lyrics is better for my concentration (I hope, so).

  71. Permalink to comment#

    I often listen (happy) hardcore and tech/house on while working.

    Electronic music is really work-oriented, it help me focusing on my tasks.

    The poll lacks an “often but not always” entry IMO.

  72. Usually I listen to music when I code or design some UI , but I have to know where I go first, or when my collegues are speaking German (I’m French) and I can’t concentrate I put the music very loud so that I won’t here them. It’s hard to code commenting in English with people speaking German around (sorry) when you are French ^^
    I use Grooveshark and Google music :)

  73. Matt
    Permalink to comment#

    I work in a large office with 25 other developers. Whenever I really need to concentrate hard and don’t want to be disturbed I put on the headphones and listen to music (currently, Adele’s “Don’t you remember”).
    Anytime else, I don’t listen to music because I want to have an open ear for what’s being discussed by my co-workers.

  74. Permalink to comment#

    Always listening to music while working. I use Iplayer , soundcloud, we7,…. Any free source available to me.

  75. Permalink to comment#

    I work for a group of radio stations so we have one of them playing throughout the day.

    If there is a particular show or presenter that I don’t enjoy I stick in my earphones and listen to my iPod so no matter which way go I can’t escape the music.

  76. I used to listen to music all the time due to a noisy office. Then I read a great piece on the matter in “Peopleware: Productive Projects and Teams”. It puts forth, with evidence, that listening to music occupies your R-Mode brain – the creative, non-verbal bit – making R-Mode thinking harder. This sort of thinking is vital for programming tasks where you have to think about the bigger picture.

    I now listen to music when I am doing programming work where I don’t have to think about the architecture, etc. Listening to music here can be beneficial when you absolutely don’t wan R-Mode thinking getting in the way of L-Mode thinking. When working at an architectural level or pausing to think, I’ll turn the music off but keep the headphones in (to block out the ambient noise). I’ve noticed a boost to my productivity this way.

  77. Kev R
    Permalink to comment#

    I alternate between music and podcasts on my iPod.

    When working I stick it on shuffle for background, when browsing or not needing to concentrate too hard I switch podcasts.

  78. Permalink to comment#

    Yes, my mp3 collections.

  79. I rarely listen to music at home but when I do I use good old iTunes. When at work I’ll listen to my iPod most of the day and if that runs out of power it’s on to Spotify! I like silence sometimes when I’m really trying to concentrate, but a lot of the time music will help me code with a better flow and rhythm.

  80. Permalink to comment#

    I am living in UK and I always listen to Radio-2. It keeps me updated with news and latest and have great music throughout the day.
    I work from home so it is only me here so the radio is in the background most of the time.

    @Dominic I liked what you said about creativity and music. I will sound up on that :)

    @Martin Yes! it is switched off when I really need to concentrate.

  81. The type of music I listen to varies on my mood, so I might listen to my local radio station, or go thru my mp3’s playlists

  82. Our office is pretty open plan so even though we’re a small enough team it’s easy to get distracted by other people’s conversations, brainstorming etc. When concentration is needed it’s earphones in and itunes/spotify/last fm on.

    P.S. Daft Punk makes me code like a demon!

  83. EstherH
    Permalink to comment#

    so, i’m probably the only one… but my favorite thing to listen to while working is windows media player playing the sample music that came on the pc. it’s relaxing :)

  84. I simply can’t work without it.
    Ibiza global radio allways on.

  85. Permalink to comment#

    Always music from the iTunes radios, mostly 80´s the gold decade

  86. Constantine
    Permalink to comment#

    Grooveshark – Forever and ever Amen

  87. lennytafro
    Permalink to comment#

    1/2 the time, collaboration time is usually music free, heads-down time is spotify or hype machine or

  88. Permalink to comment# in iTunes Radio under New/Talk > Liberty Radio Network for news. Pandora for tunes and for mad laughs it’s Pandora’s Politica Comedy station which might be the thing that’s happened to me since Pandora itself! w00p!

  89. fp
    Permalink to comment#

    I just can’t work without music. I switched off the music only if I have to develop any hard business part of code

  90. I work in an agile team, so collaboration is really important.

    I do listen to music via Spotify when performing some tasks on my own – usually the more administrative stuff like reading through bug reports, but a lot of the time it doesn’t fit with the agile environment.

  91. komiska
    Permalink to comment#

    While illustrating / layouting /designing , i listen to true crime stories on YT ( looove forensics& profiling ), and i really mean “listen”: i hide the YT window, but when coding, i prefer to just listen to the birds outside the window,when no blizzard .

    Exception: if something need to be done really fast and quick ( you know, those friends that call and ask for a favor – printable this afternoon , please )
    there’s nothing like Ronny Jordan’s “So what” :

  92. Jamie
    Permalink to comment#

    Almost always listening to my own collection. If I’m doing some really difficult coding, though, I’ll have to give it a pause for a while.

  93. Scott
    Permalink to comment#

    Currently it’s BBC Five Live for the best Olympics coverage in the world :)

  94. Permalink to comment#


    Spotify playlist in the office, plays on one machine, and we can all edit it from our machines.

    Works well, although I keep ending up listening to 90’s dance!


  95. Permalink to comment#

    Always. This has been studied. Conclusion: humans are much more productive when music is played while working.

    • Permalink to comment#

      Concerning the studies: That’s not true. Studies showed that people that are used to music when they work are much less distracted than people that prefer silence. But it’s not a production pusher. Nevertheless, i enjoy it too much to quit the music listening while working.

    • That very much depends on the nature of the work (and the person to some extent). Extreme example: say your work is composing music – will you be more productive with music playing? Normal examples: team retrospective meeting (music would likely be disruptive), single worker creating CSS useage strategy (person may find music disruptive to L-Mode thinking), single person ploughing through site CSS (person may find music useful and help productivity). Etc.

  96. Permalink to comment#

    Music. Always.

    Mostly my own music library, sometimes stuff i find on Soundcloud.

  97. Permalink to comment#

    I often listen to music while I work. Wearing headphones and starting pumping bpms makes me enter my own ‘Mr.Wolf mode’ (Pulp Fiction anyone?) and better focus on what I’m doing… just like a runner listens to the music of his choice while training.
    My main choice is shuffling my iPhone playlist but every now and then I try streaming radios, Spotify, Deezer, Soma or anything else fitting my current mood…

  98. I need it for concertrate myself while I’m programming, I allways use my Synology Audio Station Streaming at work…

    And, of course, everything scrobbled in ( ).

  99. AdinanCenci
    Permalink to comment#

    If nobody disrupt me, otherwise it just drive me crazy

  100. kevin0
    Permalink to comment#

    I listen to this awesome website that brings you 9 different playlists every month, with very very cool selections.

  101. Permalink to comment#

    I have a premium subscription to just for the progressive & trance channel. Otherwise, kohina or other chiptune sources. :)

  102. Mike
    Permalink to comment#

    I used to not be able to listen to music while working because I found it too distracting. Now, at my new job, my co-workers make quite a ruckus, so as a defense mechanism I have learned to overcome this challenge. I listen to music all day through google music (via gMusic app for iOS).

  103. It depends on the location– at work (the “9-5″), it’s Pandora/ (depending on the mood).

    At home, it used to be iTunes, but now it’s Spotify all the way.

  104. rdio most of the time. Although when I really have to concentrate or am dealing with words I turn it off, or tune in to something that helps with concentration.

  105. MikeC
    Permalink to comment#

    Music is massively motivating for me, now that I work on my own I always have it on, couldn’t live without it now.

  106. I listen exclusively to Shoptalk Show podcasts all day long. But when I am not doing that, I am listening to music.

  107. Pumping psy-trance from playing from my MacBook Pro. Reluctantly turning the volume down during a Skype call with clients.

  108. Escuto sempre Amy Winehouse

  109. James K
    Permalink to comment#

    I either Listen to BBC 6Music, Xfm or spotify

  110. Permalink to comment#

    My favourite is Spotify and secondary option would be iTunes. I usually play when I am doing repetative task but not when using brains and mind.

  111. Nothing helps me focus like some good music. Doesn’t matter who it is, as long as it has a good beat, good voice, or just plain catchy.

    Good music puts me in a good mood. What is better than that for getting work done?

    ACDC – Back in Black honestly makes me feel like a Programming Rockstar!


  112. I listen to music all the time when I am working. I either create a playlist on Grooveshark, listen to Drumcode Podcasts on iTunes or listen to something soothing and relaxing like Birdy.

  113. zero
    Permalink to comment#

    Get work done is super cool, thanks for sharing!

    I listen to anything from streaming radio: KEXP in Seattle for indie music, WBGO in NJ for Jazz, siriusxm for classic hiphop, r&b grooves, reggae, disco, but I love soundcloud & mixcloud for beats…125 bpm is optimal for coding.

  114. Harry
    Permalink to comment#

    I grew up watching MTV when they were a music video channel. Today I hook my iPad to the TV and play Vevo. If I want something like the good ol’ 120 Minutes I play videos based on The Jesus and Mary Chain or The Stone Roses. Yes, regular radio will do, but I love to have the TV on.

  115. Permalink to comment#

    Headphones. iTunes. Full library on shuffle. Cranked. Always :)

  116. Permalink to comment#

    I listen to Pandora or my mp3 player if the net is out. But I typically only listen to music to drowned out office mates who talk on the phone a lot. I can work in complete quiet or noise, but I can’t do one sided conversations lol.

  117. Permalink to comment#

    Very rarely. I find anything in or on my ears distracting, maybe I need better headphones? I do enjoy eclectic music over a PA system of some sort..eeesh I must be truly a corporate dweeb at heart. :)

  118. Karen
    Permalink to comment#

    I actually listen to books. Keeps my mind from wandering. I turn on the music when I don’t have a book to listen to at the time (I go through a lot of books).

  119. Permalink to comment#

    I always have music playing on my 80 Gb iPod. I’m lucky enough to work from home so I can play whatever I want as loud as I want. …and I do love me some music.

  120. Ricardo Pareja
    Permalink to comment#

    Yeah I always listen!

    *hey Chris Coyier the overflow:hidden in ‘.end-of-article-stuff’ is hiding the recommend facebook box :)

  121. Jerad
    Permalink to comment#

    Whenever I’m not writing — which typically means that I’m doing graphic design work — I’m playing somethig on my iPhone. Usually comedy podcasts, but occasionally music. (Mostly hip-hop.)

    I find it impossible to write anything — code, email, prose — while listening to music or podcasts. Same with reading. Apparently this puts me in the minority!

    • ngryman
      Permalink to comment#

      That’s true for me for music with a lot of lyrics and in my language (french).
      The words I hear mix with the worlds I write …
      Instrumental and english music is harmless ^^

  122. AntoxaGray
    Permalink to comment#

    I once discovered some amazing band on myspace (yes I know this site is horrible; I just seen a link to it), but now I unfortunately lost it/forgot name of band.

    That was only time I listened to music while working. Now I am listening to CPU cooler.

  123. Norman144
    Permalink to comment#

    I cant seem to code unless I have silence. But with graphic work, designing in PhotoShop, music seems to help. Coding needs left brain and silence!

    And I always use Itunes with my thousands of songs that I adore.

  124. Permalink to comment#

    I personally listen to WEFUNK Radio all day! thid groovy station gives me the drive to work.
    I highly recommend it to all of you who love funk and hip hop.

  125. Damon
    Permalink to comment#

    I have MOG playing all day. No matter what (designing, coding, etc)

  126. Permalink to comment#

    Just started to use Spotify and I’m loving it!

  127. Permalink to comment#

    iTunes all the way. But not always music sometimes I like listening to podcasts like Coast to Coast AM.

  128. It really depends on the mood and what I’m working on at the moment but more often than not I got Spotify up and running.

  129. Varun
    Permalink to comment#

    generally I don’t prefer music at while work, only when I want to get some relaxation or break I do it but rarely.

  130. Andy
    Permalink to comment#

    I listen to the Google music. A daily dose of ska keeps me productive all day. ^^

  131. Crispen
    Permalink to comment#

    I must have my music, typically iTunes and my own library.

  132. Permalink to comment#

    I listen to music and books all the time while I work. It helps me drown out everything else and focus.

  133. Permalink to comment#

    Rdio at work. Most of the day.

  134. Dylan
    Permalink to comment#

    Digitally Imported Trance channel

  135. Permalink to comment#

    Pandora, Spotify, or Google Music to the rescue!
    (occasionally iHeartRadio)

  136. Jake
    Permalink to comment#

    I work from home, so I typically go with iTunes. Sometimes I listen to a youtube playlist or

    Honestly though, I don’t much care for iTunes. If I leave my PC on for a month, I usually have to restart iTunes a couple times because over time it will eat up 2-3 gigs of RAM and then freeze on me (even if I have 10+ gigs unused). It does have a nice interface though.

    This “getworkdonemusic” website is pretty awesome. Thanks for pointing that out, Brandon.

  137. Katie
    Permalink to comment#

    I’m constantly listening. I am addicted to Spotify.

    I usually have giant headphones on so I can listen to what I like. It helps me get work done and really concentrate.

  138. Quiet when designing.
    Music when coding simple tasks.
    Relaxing water/white noise while coding hard features
    Silence when planning/UX

    And I use Google Music for most of this while a couple white noise/water apps from Google Play.

  139. Jesse
    Permalink to comment#

    I use my iPad (sometimes my iPhone), and switch between head phones and speakers when I listen to music. I typically get the music from iTunes or Amazon.

  140. Permalink to comment#

    I sometimes find it too distracting. But then there are times when it gets me really focused. Grooveshark, Pandora,

  141. Permalink to comment#

    Music always… If I want to randomize my music I’ll listen to a specific station on Pandora depending on what I’m in the mood for. Otherwise I’ll open Spotify and listen to a specific playlist or artist.

  142. Grooveshark all day !!!

  143. Permalink to comment#


  144. Mike
    Permalink to comment#

    Trumpet Concerto’s for the morning,
    Techno for the afternoon

  145. Permalink to comment#

    all the time! i think it helps to keep focus on the task

  146. When my music library fails to entertain, i use to find new music to picque the interest.

  147. Bruce
    Permalink to comment#

    I distracts me, actually. When I listen to music I want to listen to it.

  148. I have to listen to music when I’m working, it keeps me in a good mood, which I believe is always helpful when designing! I use iTunes or Spotify!

  149. Absolutely, But I have to through in that I like talk radio too.

  150. Jessi Hance
    Permalink to comment#

    I work in a customer service bullpen with constant conversation around me, so I bought some affordable noise-cancelling headphones. I listen to my humongous iTunes collection (440 GB) on and off all day.

    I vary the music by mood, energy, genre, decade, and region a lot, and throw in a bit of sweet (relative) silence now and then. I tend to listen to instrumentals more at work, vocals more at home.

    When I really need a short break from my desk, I leave work, walk across the street to the public library, browse the music CDs and check out a few. :D

    I keep three copies of my music collection: on my iMac at home, and on two portable firewire drives, which I rotate between home and work.

    You get the gist. I can hardly live without my music any more than I could do without oxygen.

  151. I can do with or without music as long as it suits my taste and keeps me productive without a headache or distracting my co-workers. :D

    On FreeBSD (which I love so so much!) I use Deadbeef or Clementine currently.

    On Windows 7 or OS X it’s iTunes with a shared library or foobar2000.

    Genre and taste preferably would be instrumental.

    Great poll Chris, so many interesting responses to read!

  152. Marc Riley and Gideon Coe on BBC Radio 6 perectly coincide with the core of my work day here in PST.

    Making an exception this week for the Olympics which I have on in the background.

  153. Permalink to comment#

    iPod any one? :D
    I love my iPod classic

  154. Permalink to comment#

    We rock spotify premium in the garoffice,

    The garoffice playlist is eclectic:

    Also other great work music:

    TYCHO :
    ULRICH :

    And many more. Love this topic. We ALWAYS bump some tunes when we are in the zone…

    Cheers, TGIF,

  155. We have a spotify playlist where everybody can put their taste of music in. Then we have a spotify app running with a voting system. When a song has three votes it gets skipped and when skipped three times in a row it’s been placed on the blacklist.

  156. Darren
    Permalink to comment#

    MP3 player, Google Play,, Netflix, DVDs, Pandora, Spotify, whatever I can get my ears on. Cannot work in silence!

  157. Permalink to comment#

    I listen to music 8 hours a day while i work.. I use mixcloud, youtube and soundcloud to listen to radio shows, live sets and the latest tunes in trance, house and progressive…

  158. Michael
    Permalink to comment#

    I feel like the major minority here, since only one other person mentioned this, but I mostly listen to iHeartRadio because I can tune into local stations, or make my own. On the rare occasion that I don’t have internet, or just feel like it, I’ll listen to my own music on iTunes.

    • I use iHeartRadio in the mornings to listen to a local morning radio show.

      As far other times of the day, if I am listening to anything, it’s either Pandora or my music uploaded to my Amazon Cloud Player (although, just recently Amazon changed their free level of the service which will probably drive me away from it).

    • Michael
      Permalink to comment#

      I used Pandora about a year ago, then found iHeartRadio. They seem the same, except for the fact that iHeartRadio has local stations. Is there a big difference otherwise? I have heard that their stations are created by humans, so maybe there’s a better mix that way. As for Amazon Cloud Player, I’ve never tried it, but I have tried Google Music. I don’t really use it as a player, however it does work pretty well, but mostly I use it to back up my music. They let you upload 20,000 songs for free and you can access them and listen to them from any browser, which is nice. For now, I’ll stick with iHeartRadio and iTunes, but I may give Pandora another try…

  159. Sometimes I listen to music via iTunes, but only if I’m in a good, productive mood – otherwise I get distracted. Sometimes I listen to Boagworld podcasts; they teach you something without being too serious/distracting.

  160. Permalink to comment#

    I used to hear music all the time while doing anything in the past. But lately, if I’m listening to music, I can’t seem to concentrate on the thing I’m doing.

  161. Permalink to comment#

    I “Work with” LINKIN PARK :) Always…

  162. Permalink to comment#

    foobar2000 in windows

  163. Polson45
    Permalink to comment#

    Music distracts me when I am working. I perfer to listen to it at the gym, when relaxing or on a night out.

  164. Permalink to comment#

    I love some Pandora.

  165. Permalink to comment#

    Always!!!!!!!, always!!! … music makes my ideas flow and I get the soft environment, the music always put it at low volume, very subtle.


  166. Permalink to comment#

    I usually find music too distracting! I’m the only person I know who feels that way, though…

  167. Its all about “chill non vocal” it’s simple and the beats keep you on track with out the distractions of lyrics

    • Michael
      Permalink to comment#

      Yeah, if I’m into some deep thought processes, I’ll play some instrumentals, or even classical. I even put this type of music on low volume to fall asleep sometimes!

  168. I usually listen to my iTunes “comprehensive” playlist—all those songs that I never skip—on random. With iTunes Match, I can have my entire music collection in the office, without cluttering my machine.

    Often, I prefer “soundscape” tunes though—think Cocteau Twins, Claire Voyant, Mogwai, etc.


  169. baldmountain
    Permalink to comment#

    I’ve worked in offices where whoever was first in claimed AirTunes and played what they wanted. Often they’d choose some bland alternative mix that was more annoying than anything else. I’d repay the favor by playing Mozart or Ministry, or if I was really annoyed; Phillip Glass.

    I like wearing headphones and listening to music while I work. I can listen to what I’d like, and people think a little more about whether they should disturb me than if I wasn’t wearing headphones.

  170. Silence is better for times where something is complex; but music is great for the normal day to day.

  171. I listen to my iTunes library, mostly. Sometimes on shuffle, sometimes I just reach for Alfred and ask for a random album.

    And depending on my concentration, sometimes I won’t even notice when it’s over.

  172. I do use Spotify a couple of times when I blog or use Photoshop. It distracts sometimes but I like to listen to my favorite music at work.

  173. Permalink to comment#

    Definitely – then again – I’m working from home all the time, so it’s much easier :-)

  174. Grooveshark for me!

  175. My first post @chris
    I listen always Music or Shoptalk, when I work creative. and so sorry when my english was not god written


  176. WinAMP, with my own 2500 MP3’s.
    Just like the old times! Some are dated Napster-time!

    Good music doesnt get old.

    And for new stuff: Youtube.

  177. Permalink to comment#

    I have a Pandora station for everything I love. Oi, hardcore and street punk, celtic punk, traditional Irish, ska, reggae, funk, bluegrass, honkytonk, folk, old blues, etc. So it depends on my mood. But after a while Pandora can’t figure out how to keep the stations clean so I’ll get Johnny Cash, Fishbone, Dylan, and Circle Jerks followed by Bob Marley all in a row on the same station. Not that that’s a bad thing.

    I also love TED talks, although you miss out on some of the visual presentations if you’re just listening. And comedy is always great, especially if you’re in a pissy mood. Louis C.K. makes my day.

  178. Magnus Huber
    Permalink to comment#

    Grooveshark or Tunein radio all the way.

  179. pery
    Permalink to comment#

    all you are kids :)

    try “DI” ( Digitally Imported )

    i listing my music with VLC without tab open on the browser that i work on

  180. Permalink to comment#

    Grooveshark, usually! My favourite work-music to listen to is Tycho.

  181. Permalink to comment#

    Since I am doing an internship Spotify get out of my pocket :) so, Grooveshark is more than acceptable to me!!!
    Something like Krafty Kuts sets my brain ready to start dealing with JS :) cool!

  182. Charbs
    Permalink to comment#

    At the agency i work out, we use spotify from 9am to 5:30pm. There’s a collaborative playlist which anyone can add songs to. When that gets too annoying, i play some loud heavy metal in my head to get me going!

  183. K G B
    Permalink to comment#

    I’m much to particular to settle for internet radio…I have my own playlists i cycle through, I get too distracted having to skip garbage songs….

  184. Permalink to comment#

    I use my itunes library mostly. When it comes to learning something complex though (Jquery, SASS, CSS3), I usually like silence to minimize distraction (especially from music with lyrics).

  185. If I have anything serious to do I tend to try and get some work done before I reach for the music. Once I’m halfway, or doing something requiring less intense concentration, then I listen to music. I either listen to CDs (via Windows Media Player) or

  186. Daniel Mascena
    Permalink to comment# and grooveshark \m/

  187. Nathalie
    Permalink to comment#

    Youtube, mostly using YoutubeRepeat, but sometimes I use some playlists.

  188. mattbeninghof
    Permalink to comment#

    Yes, I really need music to get everything moving. While I don’t usually listen to this type of music on my own time. When I’m coding I listen to Big Gigantic, Ratatat, Lotus, and the Tin Hat Trio. They all have just pushing melody lines and no real lyrics to make mention of. Give it a try some time!

  189. Permalink to comment#

    I usually have music on. Primarily use Pandora or Spotify.

  190. Oh Yes! trance

  191. I’m surprised to hear nobody mentioned They offer emerging bands, hottest music, make your own playlist, apps, extension… they have it all!

  192. Permalink to comment#

    Mediamonkey – minimized – FLAC.

  193. Trev
    Permalink to comment#

    Always list to Absolute Radio FM!
    It’s great, if you like a good mix of music and fairly witty DJ’s.

  194. I use Aupeo to listen music by my mood. Love it!

  195. Shedhead
    Permalink to comment#

    Even though I like music I used to find it distracting when I first started working here.
    Now I miss it when theres no music on!!

  196. Lisa
    Permalink to comment#

    Pandora or Spotify. Love it!

  197. I generally have the IHOP prayer room webstream on – amazing how worship music helps focus and concentration

  198. Yes when doing a long repetitive task – radio, phone & youtube

  199. verpixelt
    Permalink to comment#

    Always listening to my iTunes library or

  200. Permalink to comment# – love the house channel

  201. Permalink to comment#

    I mostly listen to my own collection, or use Tapinradio to listen to various stations. But mostly trance channels. Or a bit or Rock.

  202. (Nearly) Always.

    Most time I listen to my collection with “JS Playlister”… ;o)

  203. I listen to jazz, it’s increase cretivity.

  204. All the time. Just in iTunes, don’t really use Spotify. Mainly rock music too. Find it hard to work without music.

  205. Grooveshark all day :)

  206. Almost always. Usually listening to a DJ mix from Soundcloud or Sometimes I’ll throw in a podcast to break up the flow, but it depends on my mood.

  207. RB
    Permalink to comment#

    Almost all of the time. Lately: finding cool stuff on youtube especially full length albums, playlists, etc. Sometimes pandora. Rarely I heart radio.

  208. Miles
    Permalink to comment#

    I use Streams your entire music collection to any pc or smartphone. Awesome program.

  209. When I’m designing I use my itunes music library as inspitation. But when i’m codding I need complete silence.

  210. I listen to music when doing a simple or repetitive task. If i’m doing something really complex I will often listen to film soundtracks or sometimes nothing at all.

    Player of choice: Spotify

  211. Absolutely have to. If anything to drown out the endless chatter of people around me when they start babbling about nonsense :) lol

    No, seriously, it helps ease the process of doing your job. For some reason, I find electronic music (house, techno, trance, drum n bass) helps me code better … must be the binary nature of the music itself :)

  212. Allways at work, something like Rage against the machine. :-)

  213. Grunt work productivity increases if I listen to music while working but it becomes harder to remain focused on non-grunt work.

  214. Permalink to comment#


  215. I put on music when I am having trouble staying focused on a monotonous project.

    It helps me combat my ADD.

  216. Permalink to comment#

    Spotify premium subscriber here and it’s on and playing almost all the time. Even if I’m not listening, I often have head phones plugged in and just come back to it and put the headphones back in when I get back to the desk.

    If it’s not spotify I like to catch up on episodes of This American Life, which isn’t music…

  217. Yes. is good one for work. I am much more productive

  218. Michael Clesceri
    Permalink to comment#

    Pandora and iTunes Match all day long!

  219. Permalink to comment#

    Spotify all day! easy and effective ;)

  220. Permalink to comment#

    I almost always do, but it can’t be any type of music. Some of my favorite stuff is too distracting, as well as some of the new catchy stuff, and anything I haven’t heard yet. I’ve got a few playlists full of good low-distraction-level tunes, many of which are instrumental.

  221. Permalink to comment#

    Right know I prefer listening radio show than a full music

  222. derek h.
    Permalink to comment#

    all the time….listen to music while i work.

  223. Permalink to comment#

    I always listen to music and I developed a web app just to do it :P

  224. Brendan
    Permalink to comment#

    Voted Always, but sometimes Pandora goes into ‘Are you still listening’ and I’m deep enough in code that I don’t notice for a bit, or I’ll come back to my desk and forget to hit play.

    Source(s) of choice: Pandora, my own MP3/FLAC collection… Occasionally Youtube playlists.

    Hardware of choice: Well-used pair of Grado SR60i headphones

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