Jun 10, 2022

The Ultimate Bookkeeping Playlist

Sometimes, bookkeeping can be difficult, confusing, even tedious (though we’d never admit it). So when those late-night number-crunching sessions happen to you, there’s only one thing that can help make your books balance easier. No, not caffeine. No, not even great bookkeeping software, although that’s a very good guess.

What bookkeepers need to stay sharp while they work is music. That’s why we’ve compiled the ultimate accounting music playlist, aka Now That’s What I Call Accounts Payable, Volume 1099-MISC, the definitive collection of songs that will power you through hours of manual bookkeeping. Or minutes of bookkeeping using Sunrise.

Think of this compilation as the Yacht Rock of finance.

The song to get you in the mood

Monty Python – Accountancy Shanty (Meaning Of Life)

It’s all tax deductible

We’re fairly incorruptible

We’re sailing on the wide accountancy!

Athletes listen to music to get themselves hyped up for the game. This is the same concept, but with less primal yelling. Unless you deleted the business expense receipts folder, of course. Monty Python’s “Accountancy Shanty” from The Meaning of Life is the perfect hype song to get your game (theory) face on as you fire up your Sunrise Dashboard. The sea shanty tune also makes you feel like a pirate even though you’re doing everything by the book.

You are doing everything by the book, right?

The song to get your books in balance

Depeche Mode – Get the Balance Right! (Official Video)

Get the balance right

Get the balance right

Depeche Mode’s “Get the Balance Right!” is imploring you to make sure your balance sheet is accurate in a very not-so-subtle way. Put this song on repeat, especially the chorus, until you’re sure your cash inflow and outflow are accurate in your bookkeeping software. In Sunrise, you can click over to the Reports section and click Balance Sheet to compare your assets month-over-month, or year-over-year. It’s really quick to do, but the synths on this song are so good, you may want to triple check just to hear more of it.

The song to do complex mathematics

Mos Def – Mathematics

Like I got, sixteen to thirty-two bars to rock it

But only 15% of profits, ever see my pockets like

Accounting can make your head spin, much like Mos Def’s “Mathematics,” which may be a statistician’s theme song with the amount of facts and figures he throws at you. Yet while Def’s topic and rhyme scheme may be complicated, your bookkeeping doesn’t have to be. Just connect your business bank account to your Sunrise app, and most of the difficult bookkeeping items like sending & tracking invoices, profit & loss reporting, and doing your taxes are basically taken care of.

But if you want to do things manually, “Mathematics” will prime your brain to take things on. The rap might also make you want to fight the powers that be though, so you should warn your boss.

The song to track expenses

Destiny’s Child – Bills, Bills, Bills

Can you pay my bills 

Can you pay my telephone bills 

Can you pay my automo-bills

First, let’s admire the lyrical genius that is “automo-bills.” Second, having a power trio like Destiny’s Child croon about all the various “Bills, Bills, Bills” one has to pay is the perfect soundtrack to make sure that you are tracking all of your expenses. Sunrise can track expenses automatically with a learning A.I. that can categorize expenses the way you want. It’s such a great feature, it might go off by itself on a massive solo career. But it won’t, unlike some divas we know. (Reunion tour, please.)

The song to monitor your cash flow

Wu-Tang Clan – C.R.E.A.M. (Official HD Video)

Cash rules everything around me

C.R.E.A.M., get the money

Dollar bill, y’all

Credit is cool, but cash is king. Well, at least cash flow is, because it measures the health of your business. And when it comes to both cash and flow, you can’t get better at both than Wu-Tang Clan’s “C.R.E.A.M.” to get your mindset right. Your profits might be misleading if your cash flow is negative, so make sure to check your Cash Flow Report to diagnose any signs of weakness in your fiscal machinations.

Also, I’m pretty sure Fiscal Machinations might have been an alt name for one of the Wu-Tang Clan members.

The song to do your taxes

Johnny Paycheck-Me And The IRS

Take your 1040 forms and shove ’em

Straighten out their own damn mess

You can write me off ’cause I ain’t givin’ a dime to the IRS

Sure, “Taxman” by the Beatles is the easy choice here, but to us it doesn’t quite convey the average entrepreneur’s attitude when it comes to April 15th. Instead, Johnny Paycheck’s “Me and the IRS” is the song to properly get you in the mood to save every last penny you can from going to Uncle Sam. The man’s name is Paycheck, after all, so he must know what he’s singing about; and the anger and disdain in his voice perfectly encapsulates what may be going through your own mind during tax prep.

Luckily, Sunrise’s Tax Assist makes it easy to check off all your tax to-do’s, and to make sure you are taking advantage of every business deduction you can.

The song when the taxes are done

After Taxes

‘Cause from those total wages earned

Down to that net amount that’s due

I feel the painful sense of loss between the two

Let’s face it though, Mr. Taxman is going to get his. So you can lament along with Johnny Cash as he soothes you with “After Taxes,” a hilarious aftermath of, well, after the math.

The song when you’re collecting invoices

Rihanna – B*$#* Better Have My Money (Explicit)

For every small business owner or freelancer or contract worker who has had a nightmare or two trying to get invoices paid, there’s really only one song that puts it as bluntly as those feelings need to be put. Rihanna’s “B**** Better Have My Money” isn’t exactly safe for work, but then again, neither is a late invoice.

Luckily, with Sunrise’s recurring invoices and automated reminders and late fees, you don’t have to be quite as forceful as Rihanna in your day-to-day. But no one will know that this song is blasting in your earbuds while you watch those late fees accrue, and that’s a good thing.

There are a lot of other songs that could be on our Bookkeeping Playlist. Including:

Taxman – The Beatles

Mo Money Mo Problems – The Notorious B.I.G.

Money, Money, Money – Abba

Money – Pink Floyd

Moneytalks – AC/DC

Free Money – Patti Smith

I Need a Dollar – Aloe Blacc

Mr. Banker – Lynyrd Skynyrd

Livin’ on a Prayer – Bon Jovi

The Magic Number – De La Soul

2 + 2 = 5 – Radiohead

The Moon and Cryptocurrency and Me – Cryptocurrency Girls

$ave Dat Money – Lil Dicky


What’s your favorite song to listen to when balancing your books?

About the author

Robert Woo
Robert Woo is a freelance writer & marketer who has been running his business with Sunrise for more than a decade. He focuses on the tech and finance industry, has been a featured contributor of Lendio, and regularly shares his experience with software via blogs and articles. During any remaining free time, he’s obsessing over fantasy football, writing for television, and playing guitar just enough to maintain the calluses on his fingers.


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