And The Vision That Was Planted In My Brain, Still Remains

You know that totally rad feeling you get when a fragrance reminds you of a long-lost time in your life or a particular memory?  Or, even better, when a song takes you immediately to a particular place, where you haven’t been in years?  But when you hear those notes, BOOM, you are THERE.  This is one of my favorite phenomena in the world.  Apparently, I’m a huge sucker for dwelling on the past, because I love this particular feeling so deeply that I now try to actively make it happen.  I’m talking about making a book soundtrack.

When I read the Harry Potter series a couple years ago, it was the end of summer/early fall, and I just had a random playlist of stuff I was currently listening to.  It had nothing to do with HP, and if I posted the exact mix you’d probably laugh your ass off.  (So it’s not about the genre – I don’t care if you’re listening to death metal or classical)  I listened to my playlist on repeat for the whole series – so much so that now, if I hear “Bonfire” by Third Eye Blind or “Beautiful” by Akon, (DO. NOT. LAUGH.) I am like, in freaking Hogwarts, surrounded by the warm, beautiful weather of the changing seasons.

So now, when I start reading a book, I just make a playlist of stuff I want to listen to (preferably something new that I’m unfamiliar with), and let the sensory-memory training begin.  I have no problem creating theme-related playlists as well, I just find that a mix like that tends to be easier to create after you’ve finished the book, once you understand the whole story and what it’s about, and that doesn’t achieve my goal of attaining those awesome memory associations.

But this brings me to the point of this post:  There need to be book soundtracks. Apparently, there kind of are (the internet is just so so so magic) but this site offers up pre-made soundtracks to coincide with what you are exactly reading.  For example:  During descriptions of oceans and whales in Moby Dick, you hear ocean noises, and the shit will carry on and change for the entire book, depending on what chapter you are reading.  This is not what I am talking about.  I want a book to come with a soundtrack, chosen by the author.  It only needs to be 8-14 songs in length, I don’t need every word to correspond with a completely different note.  The point is to listen to it over and over, so you can have some awesome connections to the music.  Maybe it’s something the author was listening to that inspired them while they were writing, maybe it’s a compilation of songs that have to do with the themes of the book, maybe it’s some music that actually is referred to in the story … the options seem kind of limitless.

I know that anybody could go to sites like lastfm, or 8tracks, that allow you to make a playlist, and upload your own personal book soundtrack, but I want an official one.  The same way a movie has a nice hourish-long soundtrack having to do with a film, I want this for a book.  With the advent and popularity of digital reading, I think this would be fricking amazing.  With my next Kindle download from Amazon, comes the option to buy the soundtrack, to be listened to while I read or not. (I know plenty of people find listening to music while reading distracting, like my co-blogger)  Plus, wouldn’t this be an opportunity for them all to squeeze even more $$ out of me??  Dearest Kindle, Barnes & Noble, iTunes….can we make this happen????

Am I crazy, or is this a kinda cool idea??  Food for thought…or listening.



9 thoughts on “And The Vision That Was Planted In My Brain, Still Remains

  1. My best friend makes a playlist for just about everything lol, and it’s pretty awesome. She’s the more musical of the two of us; not that I don’t love music, because I DO 😀 she’s just much more inclined to come up with a soundtrack or playlist for life. But I think it would be so cool to have a soundtrack to one of my favorite books…I’d have to put a lot of thought into it. I don’t think I’d want music playing as I read, because the story kind of plays out like one big (rough cut) movie in my head and I like to focus on that more. But it’s definitely something cool I wouldn’t mind trying out! 🙂 Great post.

  2. Interesting idea. They make trailers for books nowadays, so why not soundtracks? Even just a printed playlist in the author’s notes would be a fun addition. I bet there were songs that the author listened to a lot while writing the book, so why not list them for readers to enjoy?

    • That is a great idea!!!! Even tho I have to say I don’t like book trailers, because then they will be putting images in my head of the characters, settings, etc, when I want to use my imagination to come up with that stuff. But I do understand the theory behind it. I think the playlist in the author’s note, or hell, even on their website or blog, would rock. Thanks for the comment!!!

  3. My brain makes sub-conscious associations like this all the time. I’m not so much of a book reader, but did some when I was younger. I know of those who do listen to music while they read. Audio books used to work in a similar way.

    I think it’s a good idea to have music associated with the book and would probably make the book more interesting to read.

  4. When I read One Day, it was when we got the Ra Ra Riot’s The Orchard. The CD is sooooooo that book for me. I know what you mean about loving this phenomenon so much that you try to force it–I may or may not have some new music in the wings that I will allow myself to download if I get a certain letter in the mail at some point. So that I can have a musical association with it.

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