Best 5 Sleep Music Genres to Beat Those Sunday Scaries

Lofi Girl reading on a bed with her cat.
Photo courtesy of Lofi Girl

Sleep music for those who had a proper weekend. Read below to fend off those Sunday scaries with five proven genres of music we discovered.

Sleep music to fend off those Sunday scaries

It’s Sunday evening and if truth be told you’ve had a bender of a weekend. You attended an absolutely electric show and got in some proper late-night raving. Drinks were flowing and (a few) bad decisions were made. Add in the x-factor of some old friends being back in town and you can understand how your body might be feeling. Not fantastic.

But as a wise man once said, everything in moderation. Including moderation.

Now you’re in bed and the insomnia starts to creep in. But fret not! Although you’ve royally destroyed your sleep schedule with those late evenings, we’ve got the sleep music to carry you off to sweet dreams. No Sunday scaries this weekend.

Atmospheric soundscapes

Diving right in, this genre will certainly be an easy entry into sleep music for those who are unfamiliar. Atmospheric soundscapes are a genre as wide as the world itself, you can discover playlists mimicking a quiet evening on the savanna to light rain on a dreamy mountain side. Not exclusive to natural environments however, this genre of sleep music can include lulling city sounds to a relaxing café too.

Here is one of my favorite sleep music soundscapes, giving you the feeling of drifting calmly through the cosmos:

Lofi sleep music

Lofi music is downtempo, ambient beats typically pulled from influences like jazz or hip-hop. Perfect for both concentration and relaxation. No surprise it blew up during the pandemic when everyone needed a bit of a mental break.

Personally, I entered the area of lofi through a need to focus on work. In my search for music to help me lock in, I discovered the Lofi Girl YouTube channel through a UgS deep dive on all things lofi. If you have work that desperately needs to get done, throw on one of these mixes, turn off that phone and get down to business. However, if you need some sleep, Lofi Girl has you covered on that front as well.

Snooze to any the Lofi Girl videos here.

Indigenous music

Leaning back in a chair at my acupuncturist’s office is where I discovered this genre of sleep music. Often, I find myself dozing off during these appointments. Of course, some of the drowsiness must be attributed to the needles but after listening to this music in the evening, the soporific effect is just as strong. Usually associated with rhythmic drums, flutes or indigenous instruments like the didgeridoo, indigenous music has an incredible range depending on the artist, culture and area of origin.

My favorite indigenous music for sleep is Native American flutes, specifically by R. Carlos Nakai. Born from both Navajo and Ute heritage in Arizona, Nakai is considered the preeminent Native American flutist in the world. I recommend his 1987 album, Earth Spirit, which is perfect for releasing tension of the day-to-day and drifting off. Pro tip — the R. Carlos Nakai Spotify radio is exceptionally soothing too.

Check out Nakai’s work here.

Ambient noise

Although atmospheric soundscapes can fall under this category, I’ve separated this sleep music out as the static-like background hum which drowns out other noises. This music can have various names like broadband, white, brown, and numerous other colors of noise. Keep in mind, the difference between these depends on the pitch and frequency of the sound.

For those in metropolitan areas, this sleep music is especially effective where more aggravating noises like sirens and traffic can keep you awake. Pink noise is supposed to be the best in this case. Below are some playlists to try out.

Classical sleep music

Last but not least is of course, classical music. It goes without saying that many classical songs are good for falling asleep but supposedly have other benefits too. Studies have shown that listening to classical music can reduce stress, improve memory and help people improve their marks in the classroom.

Two of the best are Chopin’s Nocturne and Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata. These should knock you out faster than Mike Tyson in the boxing ring. Just make sure not to blast these tunes too loud and set your Spotify sleep timer so the music doesn’t go through the night.

Say goodbye to those Sunday scaries and sleep tight.

Want more music recommendations?

From sleep music to melodic techno or filthy drum and bass — the UgS music section is the place to discover new tunes.

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Written by Louis Rouffaud

Louis Rouffaud is a sustainability professional with a Master in Sustainability and Energy Management from Bocconi University, writing content on sustainability in the music industry. He is also a hip-hop and R&B enthusiast.

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