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Classical Study Music

Study scene at café
Green Chameleon
Study scene at café"

The challenges of this school year have been overwhelming at times, but one study technique has remained remarkably steady.In January, we helped our son move back to his college campus after 10 months of Covid-safety at home. He couldn’t wait to see his friends again, and off he went to find those moving into nearby dorm-suites. It was up to me to introduce myself to his suite-mates: One is from California, one is from Korea, and the rest are from all compass points in New England.

One of the young men – let’s call him “Brendan” – gave off a distinctive “California surfer dude vibe.”

“Are you the one who surfs?” I asked.

“Yeah. And are you the DJ?” he asked.

“Yes,” I told him, “I play classical music on 99.5 WCRB.”

Without skipping a beat, he said, “Yeah…that’s really cool music,” before turning around and running down the stairs to bring up more boxes from the parking lot.

Memo to self, I thought: someday find out if he really listens to classical or if he was just being nice to his suite-mate’s mom.

Fast forward to Valentine’s Day weekend. We call our son to wish him a happy day, and to ask if he got our Val’s Day care package? As soon as he picked up the phone we heard it – boys talking in the background above … classical music! “Is that classical in the background?” I was incredulous. “Well, mom, we kinda all have to listen because Brendan says he can’t study without it.”

It made me remember a conversation I had with Dr. Amar Bose, the founder of a company that still bears his name, when I interviewed him for WCRB’s “CEO Spotlight” feature back in the mid-90s. He told me he discovered WCRB and classical music as an MIT mathematics student and fell in love with it for background music while studying.

It turns out that he was so disappointed with the sound quality of what was coming out of radio speakers back then that he wanted to invent a better radio, and better components all around, just to be able to hear the classical music better. And look what happened – he taught mathematics at MIT for 40 years. And oh, yeah, he started one of the world’s great audio equipment companies, too. For the love of hearing great classical while studying.

There are around 9 more weeks left to the semester. And CRB Classical 99.5 can be the ideal study companion, 24/7/365, in three ways:

  1. WCRB 99.5 FM on the radio.  
  2. Streaming at
  3. Streaming on our free phone app, in case you want to study outdoors when the snow finally melts.

Learn more about all the ways you can listen.

CODA:  Mamas, it’s never too early to start them on a healthy diet of classical!


Laura Carlo is the Morning Program Host for CRB.