Music to Read By

Based on some recommendations in the “Whatcha Reading Now” thread, I’ve picked up a few analog books and am enjoying them immensely. It’s much better than reading on an electronic device.

I’d like recommendations on Music to Read By.

It should be quiet, with no vocals/lyrics. (Melodic vocals without words are fine.) No loud, orchestral passages. Nothing to distract attention away from the books.

Genre doesn’t really matter. It could be softer, quiet classical. Easy-going folk guitar. Mellow piano. Etc. New Age without getting to foo-foo.

I have a couple of Qobuz playlists named “Music to Read By”, but the ones I have are getting familiar.


my go-to, whether for reading books or the morning news, has been Mozart piano concertos. This is a collection of 12 concertos. (12 hours of music!) Alfred Brendel/Neville Marriner.


Has the advantages for your purpose of being: A long-ass album, while also working as either foreground or background music. Kind of a win-win. Even if you get distracted from your reading by it.



Furniture music suited to a reading session. The down side, reading is interrupted as one must flip it.


I can read to almost any music to be honest . . . if the book is engrossing.

I really like reading to solo piano music from Jarrett, Hines, and. . . Beethoven. . . among others.

I either read or I listen to music.

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As do I.

So Rob, what music do you play while reading? Any preferences?

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Good on y’all.

I, on the other hand, asked about Music to Read By. Playing some Ciccolini & Grondona now, and it sounds good so far. Thanks @weedeewop Also, wee… I’ve found a few playlists on Qobuz under the title of Music to Read By, and they range from soft classical to more new agey stuff. I don’t like everything on the playlists, but they’re mostly okay. The main thing is that there are no sudden, crashing, loud passages… or vocals. Reading a book while vocals are going on is like trying to keep track of two conversations at a time.

When I’m reading it will often be to our local NPR classical music station. Soft and in the background.
Back when I was a member of the working class I had it on in my office all day, except when I was under the gun to finish a report or data analysis—then I put on sitar music and people stayed away!!! (I guess I could have used bagpipe music too :slight_smile: )

While reading, I do on occasion have music playing in the background. Basically to fill the space and minimize distractions. Try this on for size, good for multiple things as well as reading. Play at a low level when reading:

It goes well with: