Whether it helps you concentrate or just provides a little added motivation to hit the books, music can be a powerful study tool. Studies even show that listening to music can improve focus and even help calm test anxiety.

With that in mind, here are three artists recommended by fellow Badgers that you need to keep in mind next time you update your study playlist.

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Hans Zimmer

When songs with vocals are too distracting to listen to, sometimes instrumental music is the perfect solution. Hans Zimmer is an excellent composer of instrumental pieces, and has written many recognizable scores, such as the main themes from The Dark Knight Rises, Pirates of the Caribbean and even Call of Duty.

Whether you want the intense backing track to a battle scene to fuel your 2 a.m. cram sessions, or want a more serene nature setting to ease your worries, Zimmer has a little bit of everything. 


Inventor of the Tropical House genre and consistent chart-topper, Kygo has been a go-to study artist since his start in 2013. The Norwegian artist mixes synths and other electronic sounds to create a very intimate and relaxed listening experience that is perfect for studying.

His songs are light, easily digestible and generally slower in pace, making for easy background listening while reading or taking notes. His new album “Golden Hour” was just released in May, meaning there’s plenty of new music to check out.

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A long time front runner in the lofi hip hop field, jinsang will make an excellent addition to any study playlist. His use of dreamlike echo effects, record player static and snare beats are more than enough to conjure up feelings of nostalgia for times when you weren’t studying.

The term lofi is short for low fidelity, referring to the music’s quality of purposely sounding imperfect for aesthetic reasons, giving it a simpler, less polished feel that will aid in helping you focus on the task at hand. jinsang’s pieces are relatively short as well, allowing you to listen to a wide variety of music throughout a lengthy study session.