View Full Version : Music while you work

Ian B
08-24-2005, 03:22 PM
Anyone like to listen to music, or the radio while they're working in the shop? I've always hated the idea, I just like peace & quiet. The sound of the machinery's all I need, I find anything else distracting.

Anyone else?


08-24-2005, 03:35 PM
Good topic.... I sometimes have the radio on but it doesn't bother me if it's never on. I can drive a car across the entire country and never turn on the radio. I have enough of my own thoughts....

On the other hand, I have friends who seem unable to exist without the radio on, or the TV at least. It's especially bad when they want to talk to you and they think you can hear them over the radio, and expect you to yell back over it.

08-24-2005, 03:50 PM
LOL-- I seem to be the opposite of you 2. I need to have music whenever i work on something,or it seems i just get bored to death with the silence. The machine noise just doesn't do it for me. Nothing like a good tune to get you energized!!!

08-24-2005, 03:56 PM
I like music while cleaning, set up or lay out. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//smile.gif

once the machine is running it just adds to the noise. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//frown.gif

08-24-2005, 03:59 PM
About the only time I listen to the radio is while the machine is running. Used to listen to talk radio all day until I started having dreams of blowing up the county court house. Switched it over to music and the dreams went away. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//confused.gif http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif


08-24-2005, 04:52 PM
I used to have a decent old stereo system in my workshop, never bothered to reinstate it when I shifted everything around 18 months ago. I have a ghetto blaster now that gets used occasionally, not much. At the dry-dock I never have music on, unlike practically every similar establishment I've visited, but I do have an MP3 player that's good if I'm on a monotonous job like welding all day. Years ago, when we did a lot of wooden boat work which is generally a bit quieter than steel & iron work, often had radio 3 (classical) on all day. It seemed to fit with the type of work.
I'll have the cricket on tomorrow, though http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//wink.gif

Don't like a long drive without being able to put something on - talk radio or music - when I want it.


J Tiers
08-24-2005, 05:04 PM
No, when I listen to radio or music, I speed in the car, and I break bits in the shop.... I do better paying attention to what I'm doing.

I seem to listen to machines to be sure they are working/cutting OK, if anything changed, etc.

I'd be dead in a big noisy shop..... woud=ldn;t know what was going on.

John Stevenson
08-24-2005, 05:52 PM
I used to like to listen to heavy metal but since the price of scrap went down...........

John S.

08-24-2005, 05:57 PM
Usually NPR.

Got to keep up with what the "other side" is up to http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//smile.gif

I also like Junior Brown and the Rat Pak.


08-24-2005, 06:28 PM
I love Sirius satellite radio. I have it in the car for the commute and on a boombox in the garage. Depending on how the drive is going I can play either death metal or smooth jazz or anything in between. I don't play it real loud when working so I can hear if something goes wrong .

08-24-2005, 06:30 PM
I'm a wacko when it comes to music in the shop. At any time there can be... rock, hard rock, HEAVY METAL,

"We play both kinds, country and western"-(blues brothers),

concert, symphonic, orchestrial, hip hop, R&B, Blues, and dance.

The big ones,
Rush, ZZ Top, Led Zeppelin, Sting, Paula Abdul (yaow-za!), BB King, Glen Miller, Gustav Holst (humm... wonder which cd?), Ravel, Chopin.

No RAP! EVER! Never did get that stuff.

And the normal talk radio stuff as well. No Rush Limberger though. NPR, 700 WLW, 610 WTVN.

rock -on!

[This message has been edited by rockrat (edited 08-24-2005).]

08-24-2005, 06:31 PM
I get downright cranky if I don't have some music on in the shop or my vehicle. I don't need it so loud that I can't hear what is going on with the machines but I definately turn it up.

08-24-2005, 06:33 PM
I enjoy music in the shop, my tastes are quite eclectic though, ranging from Richard Wagner, U2, The Swedish group Hedningarna, to Ali Farka Toure and a host of other obscure stuff.

08-24-2005, 07:48 PM
We have 4 speakers mounted high up in the 4 corners of the shop, with 200watts per channel on the big amp in the old reefer in the corner.

We play both kinds of music- PUNK, and ROCK.

3 guys in the shop, so actually tastes run quite the gamut. Early guy in first thing usually loads the 5 cd player with his music- so it could be Johnny Cash and Bluegrass, or Modest Mouse and Dinosaur Jr., or Miles Davis and Gogol Bordello.

I listen to music pretty much all my waking hours, for the last 40 years or so- in fact, the I-tunes is cranking right now- some trashy teen rock band my son loaded into it- but I have a full 4gb I-pod that goes in the shop, and another 1000 or so CD's in the house.

08-24-2005, 08:11 PM
I used to like having some backround music on while I'm working in my shop, but not lately. My old second shift foreman (50 years old with the mentality of an unruly 13 year old) liked to hear AC DC over 3 vertical machining centers plowing away at 40 inches per minute. It is no wonder that the company has a policy about wearing hearing protection at all times in the shop.


08-24-2005, 08:26 PM
I don't like music so much when I'm making chips,but I will listen while welding.I find the effects of the florine gas from the flux mixes well with The Who,or Pink Floyd.

Of course Lynard Skynard ain't far away this is Mississippi after all http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//rolleyes.gif and some Top is nice ZZ that is http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//cool.gif

Right now I got Alison Krauss & Union Station going in MP,good music to relax to.Rare for there to be real vocal talent these days IMHO.

[This message has been edited by wierdscience (edited 08-24-2005).]

Flatline's Up!
08-24-2005, 08:29 PM
I almost always have local public radio on classical except on the weekends when it's opera.

I find it very relaxing and makes it easier to pay attention to what I'm doing.

08-24-2005, 08:42 PM
Music? Absolutely! Calms the savage beastie.

I have a small portable stereo (ghetto blaster?) tuned to a local "popular music" station on a low-ish volume.

The radio is on 24-7. It has been on since we moved into this house six years ago, never turned off. JRouche

Michael Az
08-24-2005, 10:01 PM
I like music in the shop unless I have to think out a project, Enya, Lorena McKenna, Bruce, the Boss or Celtic. Does anybody know if I could make cd's from the cable supplied digital music I get in the house? Only have two stations I can recieve in the shop and they both suck.

08-24-2005, 10:01 PM
Deathmetal makes me nervous when trying to machine something. Any of TON or A Perfect Circle albums are the best in my opinion. And I would rather **** a running weedeater than to ever have to listen to rap.....ever.

Davis In SC
08-24-2005, 10:12 PM
I cannot stand it !!! We share a building with a Co. that we service... They Employ a lot of trashy types,folks that are lost without blasting music, 3 or 4 different radios, all different music.....Hard to hear what a cutter is doing, when walls are shaking.... I stopped the music...

08-24-2005, 10:23 PM
I'm an Old Rock fan myself--Mostly 50's, 60's and some 70's. Used to have the music going most of the time but since they quit playing "my music" around here, I've switched to talk radio and the news.

I wish I had kept my record player and reel-to-reel. I've got a lot of stuff I'd like to put on CD. (For private use of course.) http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//smile.gif

08-24-2005, 11:08 PM
I have been thinking about ear muffs with a built in Am/Fm radio. Something like a Peltor HRX79AGU

[This message has been edited by JPR (edited 08-24-2005).]

3 Phase Lightbulb
08-24-2005, 11:25 PM
I like to listen to this inspirational masterpiece while I build my new Buggy project:

Music to my ears (http://www.frenzy.com/~jester/racecar.html)


08-24-2005, 11:34 PM
Wireless headphones, noise cancelling. $24 off ebay plus shipping.

ROCKANDROLL.. Metal, Floyd, No Rap-crap.. Country makes me cry and I don't like to cry.

Rich Carlstedt
08-24-2005, 11:37 PM
Turn on the FM and if I can recall the music going on, it means I am not focused on my work.
When 2 or 3 hours pass, and I realise that I did not hear the song I wanted, it means I am having a good time.....my brain is occupied...and chips are on the floor

my theory.
Music is good when it stops you from being mad after you break a cutter.
but....Music is bad when it prevents you from hearing the dinner bell !

08-24-2005, 11:49 PM
For me it depends what I'm doing. If I'm operating the CNC then it's metal or something with a fast tempo. When working with the manual machines I set the music to the type of work I'm doing, typically classic rock like Clapton or I'll change up and play some U2, INXS or even country. Programming the CNC, it's soft jazz or classical. When commuting in my truck anything goes. In my Porsche I really prefer just to hear that sweet aircooled flat six sing up and down through it's 7k range, on occasion I'll put Rammstein in the deck to really get into the whole German thing but I gotta be careful with the loud pedal, especially if "Du hast" comes on. Surfing the forums or the net, I just open Winamp and play whatever comes on. When I'm lifting weights or skiing it HAS to be metal, preferably speed metal, just gets the blood flowing and I get into a zone.

-Christian D. Sokolowski

08-25-2005, 12:00 AM
Usually NPR in the morning. The noon show has some fellow that answers any and all questions, good for a chuckle. After that it's older soft rock, then the NPR news in the late afternoon.
Once in a while I'll catch Howard S.
I always seem to need something to listen to unless I have a machine going, then it's off. I need to hear what the tool is doing it seems.

I tried the earphones, but they kept falling out/off

The Other Side

[This message has been edited by lenord (edited 08-25-2005).]

08-25-2005, 12:56 AM
One of the things I do on the side as a privateer ISP is stream audio feeds. My favorite is from IRH.com in Hawaii. I handle his hi-speed stream. Good stuffs, Cuz. Since I get it free I pipe it all over the neighborhood with a little stereo FM transmitter. It's very soothing to listen to, and since I speak very little Hawaiian it is never distracting. There are no percussion instruments in Hawaiian music so it doesn't hammer on your head like R&R does.


08-25-2005, 01:04 AM
I used to listen to music pretty much all the time, except when at school. I'd have a radio by my pillow at night, for which I got into trouble a lot. Working on electronics I always had music playing, and now that I'm into cabinet making, music is like glue- can't do a darn thing without glue. Funny thing though, I don't think I've ever had music playing while metalworking. Not a safety thing or too distracting, I just haven't thought to put it on.

I listen to Fleetwood Mac, Pink Floyd, Jimi Hendrix, Dylan, Deep Purple, Alvin Lee, The Animals, Beatles, Stones, Beach Boys, Buffalo Springfield, CCR, Bob Welch, Chilliwack, Colin James, Cream, Dire Straits, Dion, Duane Eddy, Electric Prunes, Emmylou Harris, Focus, George Thorogood, Gordon Lightfoot, Guess Who, Heart, Led Zepp, Lovin Spoonful, Fifth Dimension, Mamas and Papas, Grassroots, Paul Revere and the Raiders, Moody Blues, Poppy Family, Peter Paul and Mary, Roy Orbison, Santana, Simon and Garfunkel, Spencer Davis, Ten Years After, The Doors, Lovin Spoonful, The Who, The Kinks, Valdy, Van Morrison, The Ventures, The Yardbirds, Yes, ZZ Top, and the Zombies, just to name a few.

Some of the bit more obscure names like Tim Hardin, Vanilla Fudge, Uriah Heep, Tom Northcott, The Human Beinz, Sugarloaf, Strawbetty Alarm Clock, Shocking Blue, The Seeds, Ronnie Hawkins, Question Mark and the Mysterions, Pantangle, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Michael Martin Murphy, Marmalade, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Leblanc and Carr, Leo Sayer, Jorgen Ingman, Justin Hayward, Joe South, Jethro Tull, Jerry Lee Lewis, Jim Croce, Ivory Joe Hunter, Golden Earring, and George Hamilton IV, just to scratch the surface.

Then there's Patsy Cline, Marty Robbins, Johnny Cash, The Fortunes, Gary Lewis and the Playboys, The Hollies, The Kinks, Kenny Rogers and the First Edition, Edward Bear, Eric Clapton, Edgar and Johnny Winter, Earth Wind and Fire, The Easybeats, Dusty Springfield, Debbie Reynolds, Doobie Brothers, Dr Hook, Don Williams, Curtis Mayfield, Crosby Stills Nash and Young, The Cowsills, Chet Atkins, Del Shannon, Joan Jett, Donna Summer, Crystal Gayle, The Eagles, The Seekers, and Martha and the Muffins, to bring up just a sprinkling of some others.

Sammy Johns, Oliver, Bill Withers, BJ Cramer, Davie Allen and the Arrows, Harry Nillson, The Outsiders, The Drifters, The Tremeloes, and Yngwie Mahnsteen---

Just some of my favorites.

08-25-2005, 01:15 AM
Darryl - I think you're ready for Israel Kamakawiwo`ole, Willie Kahaiali`i, Jake Shimabukuro, Amy Hanaiali`i Guilliom, Makaha Sons, Keola Beemer, Cazimero Bros., Na Palapalai, Leo Kane Prior, Gabby Pahinui, Na Leo, Sunday Manoa, Raiatea Helm, The Kindom of Tonga, Ledward Ka`apana, Hui Ohana, ... http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//smile.gif


[This message has been edited by dp (edited 08-25-2005).]

[This message has been edited by dp (edited 08-25-2005).]

08-25-2005, 04:05 AM

08-25-2005, 07:28 AM
Oh yeah, gotta have the tunes on..We used to listen to the radio, but all the stations around here are pretty lame..So we brought in a 6 disc cd changer..

There is nothing like listening to some punk and hardcore metal while working..


This music gets the adrenaline flowing..


08-25-2005, 07:30 AM
NPR - Friday evenings - Piano Jazz!!!!!

Saturday - Click and Clack the car guys, then Saturday(used to be Chevron or Texaco) at the Opera...now sponsor unknown. Love Gilbert and Sullivan.

Otherwise, it can be on or off, really makes no difference. The radio probably gets turned off by me after the Saturday stuff, and during the week, somebody else has to turn it on.

John Stevenson
08-25-2005, 07:37 AM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by bspooh:
There is nothing like listening to some punk and hardcore metal while working..


This music gets the adrenaline flowing..


Adrenaline flowing ??
Sounds like that lot could cause some serious corrosion around machine tools.

John S.

08-25-2005, 07:52 AM
Coast FM 105.4 here, good variety, no big mouthed ego driven DJ`s and few adds. Listening to Ray Charles "Georgia" at present.
There is a bit of hiss and noise here so I have just built an FM aerial that I will hook up next week. Fingers crossed.

[This message has been edited by speedy (edited 08-25-2005).]

Your Old Dog
08-25-2005, 08:00 AM
I have a bodacious (sp?) stereo in the shop. At one time I was really into sound and when we went Dolby 5.1 in the house the shop got the old 300 watt system.

I now like to listen to all the stuff I used to hate in the 60's. I hated heavy metal acid type rock stuff and now I can't seem to get enough of it. Sh-t, I'm becoming a Jimmy Hendrix fan at 60yrs old! From Noon to 3pm I usually listen to talk radio for a dose of reality.

08-25-2005, 10:02 AM
Adrenaline flowing? &lt;sigh&gt;
Edith Piaf. Non, je ne regrette rien!
Exodus does it too http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

Cecil Walker
08-25-2005, 12:47 PM
No radio when any machine is running, NPR & classical when i'm at my desk. When i'm on a long road trip i like a little variety (rock, country, jazz, blues, bluegrass, classical) with the exception of rap.

08-25-2005, 04:33 PM
Slayer rules. Panteras reinventing the still wasnt their best by an means but the named ruled.

08-25-2005, 04:48 PM

08-25-2005, 10:05 PM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Rich Carlstedt:
Turn on the FM and if I can recall the music going on, it means I am not focused on my work.
When 2 or 3 hours pass, and I realise that I did not hear the song I wanted, it means I am having a good time.....my brain is occupied...and chips are on the floor

my theory.
Music is good when it stops you from being mad after you break a cutter.
but....Music is bad when it prevents you from hearing the dinner bell !</font>


that is EXACTLY what i do. i know i'm having a good time when i get something done and can't remember a single thing that was on the radio the past few hours. i'll listen to just about anything except elevator music (it actually churns my stomach), opera, and rap.

Johnny Cash, classical, Rancid, the Grease soundtrack, it's all good.

andy b.

08-25-2005, 11:10 PM
i've gotta have something to listen to other than the voices in my head

they tell me to do bad things

bad things are fun to do, but they get me in trouble



08-26-2005, 04:38 AM
I only listen to 1 local radio station.It is a privately run community station,without dj's or ads.Purely music from the 50's,60's and very occasionally the 70's.I actually know the guy that runs it,and donated some of my old LP records to them.He has a collection of over 16.000. records,many of which he has now digitised.songs are repeated only 2 or 3 times,then you won't hear them again,unless you specifically e-mail them with a request.

Hearing Arlo Guthrie's "Alice's restaurant"on this station actually caused me to go out and find a cd with that number on it.If you've never heard "the motorcycle"song,your musical education is incomplete http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif.Hilarious!
Hurray for Pegasus Radio!


08-26-2005, 05:35 AM
Hi hans ( and B ), can you tell me the frequency? It sounds like it is worthy of a listen.
cheers, Ken

08-26-2005, 06:58 AM
I would have to say no to music while I'm working. I don't like the distraction. Besides the fact that the same 40 songs over and over gets on my nerves. My wife is just the opposite. She needs some noise in the background...

I only listen to the radio when I'm driving to and from work. And only to news/talk...

Andy Pullen

Your Old Dog
08-26-2005, 07:20 AM
Matador, what I wouldn't give for a radio station that can't afford consultants! Stations are told we only listen to the radio while in the car 15 minutes a day. That's why they play what they "think" you want to hear over and over and over.

Oldies stations here play every song that was every number 1 from the 60's. Many of the great songs never made it to number 1 so they won't play them?

Sorry for dissertation but you struck a chord!

08-26-2005, 08:32 AM
Your Old Dog, that reminds me as well.....

I once worked at the big food market chain here in the Ohio area. That crapola musiak stuff they played was mentally exausting. I would hear Bad Bad LeeRoy Brown 7-9 times while I worked a 5 hour shift. The stuff just repeated. You would not notice it if you were only shopping, but if you were working, it didnt take long to go postal.

[This message has been edited by rockrat (edited 08-26-2005).]

08-26-2005, 11:34 AM
I have a boom box in my shop, but in this area, we have a critical shortage of consultant-free radio stations, so I mix up my own CDs and tapes and play those. 3rd Eye Blind, Weather Report, Vince Guaraldi, Martha and the Muffins, Wayne Shorter, hell, my tastes in music are all over the place. No opera or rap, though.

When I'm really working, I keep the volume low enough so I can hear the machines over the music. If the music's particularly good, I'll stop it while the machine runs and start it back up after the machine's off.

08-26-2005, 01:52 PM
I installed a fancy stereo system in my shop when I built it years ago. Monster cable, big speakers on the wall etc. I should have saved my money I guess, since I never use the thing.

I listen to am talk radio, mostly republican slanted talk radio. We have some very good local talk show hosts here in Seattle.

Sometimes I will switch over to the enemy channels and listen to the democrat/liberal guys for a half day or so. Just to verify that their party continues to self destruct, and continues to lack the testicular fortitude and leadership skills necessary to lead this country. Once satisfied I turn back to the more common sense channels of republican talk radio.


john hobdeclipe
08-26-2005, 08:44 PM
Music while I work? Yes, no, maybe.

Never anything that will interfere with hearing the machine I’m running. Listening to a machine may be boring, but it’s sounds are often the first indication that something is wrong. So no headphones!

During those years when I worked with woodworking tooling; saws, cutters, knives, etc., I absolutely refused to tolerate a radio in my grinding room. I need to hear what the machines on the shop floor are doing, I need to carry on a conversation with my helpers without shouting over a radio, I need to concentrate on my work. And I will not tolerate an argument over what station to listen to, or how loud. So the best way to stop that is not to start it. Got into it big time once with a kid who thought he couldn’t live without his jam. When it was all finished, the boom box was gone, and a couple weeks later the kid was gone too.

But nowadays, by myself, in my “clean room / office / store room” I like to have some of my old records playing. Robert Moog passed away a few days ago, so I’m off on a “Sentimental Journey,” pulling out my Switched On Bach, Well Tempered Synthesizer, Chopin A La Moog, Blues Current, Giorgio, and not really getting much done.

Weston Bye
08-26-2005, 09:01 PM
I used to listen to mostly AM talk, but I found that I was waiting for commercial breaks to start the spindle. Tried headphones while milling or turning, but was always afraid that I wouldn't hear the machine "telling" me things about the quality of the cut. I am older now, if not wiser, and sad to say, cannot tolerate a steady diet of either flavor of political leaning, so I listen to NPR classical while driving or working, although I will turn on Rush occasionally as an antidote to the toxic drivel that accumulates from too much NPR.