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Why listening to music while working from home can boost your mood during lockdown

TTG catches up with a neuroscientist to hear about the therapeutic benefits of listening to music during lockdown, with suggestions of playlists created by tourist boards and hoteliers to help lift you and your clients’ spirits. 

The therapeutic effects of music are well documented in many neuroscience and psychology studies over the past three decades, says Julia Jones, neuroscientist and founder of The Music Diet.


“Music and sound influence activity in regions of the brain linked with emotional processing. Scanning the brain has shown real-time changes in brain activity while individuals listened to music and different sounds,” she explains.


"Due to the fact that music and sound can modulate activity in these areas, they can be used to help focus the brain or achieve a certain mood.”


Listening to music is especially helpful during times of isolation such as the world is currently experiencing due to the coronavirus lockdown, offering a feeling of companionship which can help the listener’s feelings of loneliness, Jones adds.


“Music can help to give a quick boost when you’re feeling low or sluggish. Pick songs that you absolutely love in order to boost the effect because, as well as the neurochemical effects of the music, the impact is amplified by positive emotions linked to your memories of those songs.”


Here we round up a few playlists and streaming services recently created by hotels and tourist boards, to help travel professionals to boost any low moods during this stressful time, and which can they share with their clients too to offer some travel inspiration.


Feed your escapism


Belmond has launched Belmond Invitations, a virtual programme which will stream entertainment into people’s homes while the world of travel is on pause to provide a dose of escapism. The series will include live streams of music performances on Instagram on Belmond IGTV.


Listeners can also revisit a recent live stream by pianist Joe Stilgoe, which was due to take place live onboard the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express in March.


There’s also a selection of classical playlists created by Clemency Burton-Hill, creative director of music and arts at NYC Radio, that are available to stream on Spotify. Each playlist is inspired by one of Belmond’s destinations across Europe and North America, including the Belmond Grand Hotel Europe and the Belmond El Encanto.


Reminisce about travel


To help reminisce about past stays and experiences, Zannier Hotels has created a series of playlists so that travel professionals and their clients can travel the world through sound.


There’s something for every taste, from disco music inspired by the Ghent Music Festival, to house tracks found on the beaches of Vietnam.


Create energy


Music is the heart and soul of Nashville boutique the Bobby Hotel, which regularly hosted regular live performances and impromptu music sets before lockdown. To keep its musical energy alive, the hotel has launched a new music-focused IGTV channel. A host of Music City’s musicians and songwriters will participate and share new music via live streams.


Celebrate Ireland


Hastings Hotels has compiled a list of Irish favourites to help cheer up anyone missing the Emerald Isle during lockdown. Available on Spotify, the Hastings Hotels Ireland Influence playlist features artists and songs with a connection to Ireland.


Highlights include Phil Coulter’s The Town I Loved So Well which shines a light on the singer’s Irish upbringing and the Troubles in Derry; Rihanna’s We Found Love, the video for which was filmed in County Down and the New Lodge area of North Belfast; and Snow Patrol’s I Think Of Home which is about Belfast.


Promote wellness

Algarve hotel Longevity Wellness Worldwide has shared a playlist to help listeners de-stress during lockdown, featuring summer songs, spa relaxation music and tunes from Portuguese artists including Bernardo Sassetti, Salvaor Sobral and Luisa Sobral.


Jam with Jamaica


The Jamaica Tourist Board has curated a playlist featuring musical legends hailing from the island, to help ease worries and virtually transport listeners to Jamaica. The Every Little Thing is Gonna Be Alright playlist showcases tunes from Bob Marley, Jimmy Cliff and Beenie Man to name but a few.


Enjoy the sounds of Kissimmee

Experience Kissimmee has launched three Spotify playlists to bring Kissimmee’s feelgood vibes to agents and clients while they’re unable to travel there. There are three different playlists to choose from: Chill at Home includes tunes from the Beatles and Otis Redding; Sounds of Walt Disney World Resort is packed with Disney classics, and the Whelmed playlist includes a mixture of upbeat and relaxing songs from artists including Beyonce and Fleetwood Mac.

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