NEW BEDFORD — Phish, Jack Johnson, classical jazz and Russian symphonies — these are just a few of the types of music played to the ears of local workers during the day.
But does it help with productivity or is it a distraction?
A recent USAToday article listed 20 science-based health benefits of music, such as improving cognitive performance, helping people perform better in high-pressure situations, and reducing anxiety as much as possible. ‘a massage.
And 90% of workers perform better when listening to music, and 88% of employees produce more accurate work when they listen, according to a recent 2020 study on music and productivity.
When it comes to what type of music works best, 58% of people completed tasks faster when listening to pop music, according to one study, while 20% of people said dance music helps improve replay speed and 92% said ambient music improves accuracy. data entry.
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Wendy Hall, executive producer of the New Bedford Festival Theatre, said she listens to specifically Russian symphonies. “They give me just the right amount of energy but without distracting my focus,” she said.
Conee Sousa, director of marketing and public relations for the New Bedford Symphony Orchestra, said the office listens to various playlists by classical composers as well as classic rock, soul, as well as some jazz and folk.
“We find that classical music works great in the background for most of our tasks because it’s soothing and stays focused as we work at lightning speed trying to keep up,” Sousa said.
Listening to classical music, in particular, can increase concentration according to a study from Stanford University School of Medicine.
Scientists have revealed that it could help the brain absorb and even interpret new information faster than people who don’t listen to songs.
“We try to keep the vibe lighter on Fridays with the other genres, often playing favorites of whoever’s in the office that day,” Sousa added.
“Some of us have been known to get up and dance for a few minutes just to relieve stress and recharge.”
Listen to Frank Ocean and Phish
Lindsay Miś, executive director of the Massachusetts Design Art and Technology Institute (DATMA), said that in her art studio she listens to either Little Dragon, a Swedish electronic music group, or Frank Ocean.
“They both have relaxing R&B and pop vibes that simultaneously get on my nerves and help me focus,” she said.
However, at the office, she said she had to listen to “brown noise,” a type of low-frequency sound, or NPR. “I have to keep my head down. Not fun,” she said.
Anne Louro, assistant city planner, said that because of their open office layout, her sound-cancelling Apple AirPods were the best Christmas present ever.
“I write a lot, so I mostly listen to acoustic music and Apple Chill,” she said.
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“I’m also not embarrassed to say that I’m still addicted to Taylor Swift’s ‘Folklore’ and ‘Evermore’ albums. They have seriously helped me work remotely during COVID- and are my regular go-to when I need to do something on a deadline.”
Stephen Silverstein, owner of The Black Whale, Cisco Kitchen + Bar and the recently opened Sail Loft in Dartmouth, said he enjoys listening to soft rock and acoustic pop musician Jack Johnson.
Emily the elephant loves her tunes
Jennifer Smith, Superintendent of New Bedford Whaling National Historic Park, said she enjoys listening to the band Phish, but doesn’t like to listen to music often because it can distract her and other people in the desk.
Joanne Murray, director of the Women’s Fund SouthCoast, said she also dislikes listening to music while working, but listens to a playlist in her car on the way to work, which includes Van Morrison, Bonnie Rait, Lyle Lovett, James Taylor, Stan Getz and Mozart.
At Buttonwood Park Zoo, executive director Sarah Henry also doesn’t listen to music, as it can be distracting, while events and marketing manager Kris Caisse said she listens to podcasts such as ” That’s Messed Up” or “Girls Gotta Eat”.
However, according to assistant manager Shara Rapoza, Buttonwood Park Zoo keepers use a variety of enrichments with their animals, and that sometimes includes music.
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“Emily, one of our resident Asian elephants, loves the sounds of drums and often spends time experimenting with various rhythms on objects in her habitat – barrels, doors, that sort of thing – mimicking the sounds that ‘she hears,” Rapoza said.
Meanwhile, when BuyBlackNB founder Justina Perry isn’t blasting Beyonce’s latest album “Renaissance” in her car, she said she’s going with something high-vibe or instrumental to help her get her groove on. focus in the right headspace.
Music that gets people in the mood
She said she also uses the meditative app InsightTimer, which has lots of free energizing songs to get her in the mood.
Margo Saulnier, Director of Creative Strategies at New Bedford Creative, has spent most of her career in the music industry as a professional flautist.
“If I’m stressed, classical or jazz will bring me peace and balance. If I want to motivate myself, I rely on 90s hip-hop favorites De La Soul, Missy Elliott, Beastie Boys or current pop icons Lady Gaga and Lizzo,” she said.
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There are also two songs by local artists that Saulnier says he’s been listening to a lot lately. One is Candida Rose’s “Love Each Other Through” because she said it was a love letter to the world.
“I also listened to ‘Dark Star’ by Scapeghost because it was a love letter to me from my husband, Scott Bishop,” Saulnier said.
Standard-Times editor Seth Chitwood can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter: @ChitwoodReports. Support local journalism by purchasing a digital or print subscription to The Standard-Times today.