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Music That’s Scientifically Engineered to Help You Sleep on a Plane?

Music That’s Scientifically Engineered to Help You Sleep on a Plane?
Jennifer Billock

Travel can be stressful, especially under the influence of non-stop news about a global pandemic. While a stiff drink in the lounge certainly helps, there are other ways to relax, even if there’s no complimentary alcohol on your flight: music. While we all have our preferred travel playlists (please tell us what’s in your rotation in the comments section) a PhD in Music Theory has come up with what he says are the best music tracks to help you relax and even sleep on a flight.

The Theory Behind The Music

“Music has a very long history of being able to move someone’s psychological state from one state to another,” David John Baker, a PhD in Music Theory with a minor in Cognitive and Brain Sciences, told Forbes. “For example, imagine hearing a song that reminds you of your late grandfather and being consumed with a sense of sadness or hearing your school’s Alma Mater and being washed over with an unexpected feeling of nostalgia.”

“Our logic was that if music can be used to move people from one psychological state to another, why not try to craft music specifically to help someone focus, sleep, or overcome a temporary bout of feeling anxious?”

So the project–which is backed by hotel brand CitizenM and audio creative agency Soundscape, has also received support from BOSE–was born. Through rigorous testing of song tempos, timbres, tempi, and temporal harmonic entropy on a variety of test subjects, the Brainwaves music tracks were created.


The Brainwaves project is a series of 16 to 20 minutes tracks that aim to transform three key areas: focus, anxiety, and sleep by manipulating your brainwaves. “The idea was that we construct a set of musical parameters that tend to be associated with those states, then continually refine this music until it is effective at gently pushing us where we want it to take us,” said Baker.

The project, The music is available for listening now on many of the major streaming platforms, including Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes, Amazon, Pandora, Bandcamp, and Deezer.

View Comments (1)

1 Comment

  1. Qatar Airways

    March 6, 2020 at 3:05 pm

    Dont need anything other than earplugs and eye shades.
    Sleep really well on long flights,especially First and Business.

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