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Study Sesh Songs: Artists You Should Check Out This Finals Season

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at UCLA chapter.

Finals are finally upon us UC students, and personally, I’m pretty stressed. The one thing keeping me from losing my sanity is making sure I’m still taking the time to invest in things I like, such as music. Whenever finals come around, it’s my chance to put on an album and get to work or discover new music to keep me motivated. Here are a few of my latest favorite artists and some song recommendations for this winter finals season:

Rufus du sol

I’ve never typically been super into electronic music, but this finals season, I’ve really discovered the greatness of pairing EDM with studying. It’s upbeat and fun, making you bob your head while deep in the abyss of your work, yet the genre can also be soothing and relaxing depending on the artist. Fred again..’s discography and Skrillex’s latest album have been featured in my monthly playlists, but Rufus has been my favorite these past few weeks. With their engaging and ethereal sound, their music embodies emotion and hope, which I think is very fitting for a study session. If you want to check out their tracks, I recommend “Make It Happen” and “On My Knees” to start with!

Greta van fleet

I’m absolutely obsessed with the energy that Greta Van Fleet gives off, with lead singer John Kiszka constantly screaming into the microphone (no, like actually screaming). Greta Van Fleet is the modern version of a 70s rock band with a psychedelic vibe, and their hopeful anthems and guitar-heavy melodies are addicting. Some of my top recommendations from them include “Heat Above,” “Light My Love,” and “Stardust Chords.”


Known for her viral TikTok song “touch tank,” quinnie recently released her first full-length album. Her songs are absolutely beautiful, with instruments such as wind chimes accompanying her unique, youthful voice. Standout songs by her include “man” and “flounder.” I’ve also been obsessed with “promised,” an uplifting tune that reminds you to appreciate today, no matter how much finals season is getting you down.

Noah Kahan

His album Stick Season debuted in 2022 to rave reviews, with all songs evoking intense emotions of homesickness and finding solace in expressing his complicated feelings about life. Kahan’s sound is similar to that of The Lumineers, with a wide array of acoustic instruments such as banjos that make his songs sound very folky. In the trying time that is the end of a quarter, I personally think that sadder songs can help you remember you’re not alone and that anxious feelings are a part of human existence. It’s comforting in a weird way, all while being insanely catchy. My Kahan recommendations include “Orange Juice,” “The View Between Villages” and the titular song “Stick Season.”

one direction

Alright, maybe this one isn’t so much of a newfound love but a rediscovery of a past love. I can’t overlook how comforting familiar songs are during finals, and that is One Direction for me. People tend to discredit them as just another boyband, but I swear they churned out some fantastic songs during their lifetime as a band. Some classic 1D recommendations include all of their “Midnight Memories” album, and my personal favorites “A.M.,” “Happily” and “Clouds.”

Music definitely helps to keep me grounded during finals week, and taking the time to appreciate my interests allows me to grasp some semblance of time for myself. Playlists are a fun thing to have in the background of your studying, so spend your next study break finding some new favorite artists!

Madenn is a fourth-year Political Science student with a minor in Conservation Biology at UCLA. She is passionate about all things environment, pop culture, and activism!