Two of my favourite moments of SXSW this year both involved music.
The first was a night that started out and ended fairly innocently, but involved a great non-6th Street event. I was very excited to see some of my Australian friends again (Lachlan, Lisa, Lisa, Cam, and Anson—who would later be mistaken for James Craig—and his girlfriend Irena), and somehow they convinced me that we should go see The Mother Truckers at The Continental Club. Sure, some alt.country whatever band. Yeah, yeah. Just go hang out with my friends really.
The show turned out to be one of my personal highlights of SXSW. There is nothing quite like live music and this band really poured everything they had into it. Everything. The Mother Truckers videos on YouTube do not convey nearly the right amount of passion and verve. They were nothing short of brilliant. I even bought a t-shirt to commemorate the evening. Too bad it is with my luggage that is somewhere between Washington, DC and Ottawa.
The second moment involving music was in the highly anticipated (at least for me): The Influence of Art on Design. I found the whole panel to be interesting, to be honest, because Art is not something in which I have a background or have studied. The most interesting part to me was the discussion surrounding music as it relates to designing. Almost everyone on the panel was what I consider to be primarily a creative. I’m not saying they don’t code, but design is definitely their strength (hence the appropriate title for the panel).
Here is where I found it got really interesting. They almost all discussed music and how it influences their design work: choosing the right tunes/mix to evoke emotions that fit with the tone of the piece in which they were immersing themselves. My friend Anton Peck said that he listens to trance type music without words. The lyrics, he said, would serve as a distraction, and not necessarily be appropriate to whatever it was he was creating. Brilliantly simple. Blindingly obvious.
All of the panelists that discussed music were speaking as designers and choosing the appropriate music for that task. While I’m not a visual designer, this got me to thinking about what might be appropriate for other tasks. So, with that:
What music might be appropriate for:
- marketing/business-growth type activities?
- for correspondence/emails?
I’m really curious to know if other people out there have specific types of music they listen to when they take on specific types of tasks. Not too long ago I was able to accomplish a lot of coding while listening to Thom Yorke’s Eraser. Coincidence? Maybe. Anyone have anything to share about music for specific tasks?