Essential study instrumentals for every type of midterm

Katie Chang, General Life&Arts Reporter

From writing history essays to building engineering reports, many UT students find themselves spending hours studying inside during midterm season. Listening to the right instrumental song can turn study room fluorescents into soft summer sun, sterile PCL cubicles into a warm woodland cabin or a windowless West Campus bedroom into a grand Italian villa.

In order to get students through studying for midterms, The Daily Texan compiled a list of instrumental songs for common midterm exam subjects. 

Environmental Science/Geology/Ecology: Daphnis et Chloé: Part III: “Lever du jour” by Ravel

Wander into France’s Compiègne forest with “Lever du jour,” Ravel’s musical accompaniment to the ballet “Daphnis et Chloé.” With soft flute ornaments and lucious string melodies, the Impressionist era composer creates an idyllic, tree-lined path leading directly toward an awe-inspiring midterm grade. Listen in and smell the new leaves and ancient Earth, breathe in the fresh spring air — everything will turn out alright.

American Studies/US History: “The Story of the Wind” by Tsegue-Maryam Guèbrou

Delve into the rich cultural nuances of US history with Guèbrou‘s signature sound. Through Blues-inspired riffs recorded on a warm grand piano, “The Story of the Wind” makes for the perfect background for any American Studies or US history study session. Works by Guèbrou, an Ethiopian nun, serve as the soundtrack for numerous stories about the Black American experience, such as the 2020 documentary “Time” and 2021 Netflix movie “Passing.

Global Studies/Humanities: “Overture” by Antonio Carlos Jobim and Vinicuis de Moraes

Take a trip around Austria, Italy, the United States, Cuba and Brazil with Jobim and Moraes’ romantic mix of sounds. Incorporating classical and jazz harmonies and salsa and bossa nova rhythm, the 1956 instrumental makes for background music as worldly as the content of any textbook or Canvas reading.

Engineering: “Stone Flower” by Antonio Carlos Jobim

Whether synthesizing technical data into analysis or memorizing physics formulas, take a breather with Jobim’s “Stone Flower.” Balancing its systematic bossa nova rhythm and playful piano melody, this classic harmony of logic and leisure makes for the perfect song to conclude a long night of studying.