The festive season is fast approaching, and whether you’re celebrating Christmas, Chanukah, Winter Solstice, the Virgin of Guadeloupe, or you just fancy buying your paramour / chums a little something special, we’ve got 25 of the best music-themed gifts to tickle your pickle.
[Gadget] Retro Cassette iPhone case
We don’t often advocate the buying of phone accessories and such (wanky as they are), but this retro-styled, silicone iPhone cover is actually pretty nifty. Not only does it protect your surrogate iPod from knocks, bangs, drops and wine-spills, but it’s also dead pretty. And rubbery. *shivers*
Buy | £4.39
[Book] Oliver Sacks – Musicophilia
According to Mr. Sacks, “music occupies more areas of our brain than language does – humans are a musical species”. Preaching to the converted. In this revised, and beautifully designed paperback edition of the 2007 bestseller, Sacks considers the power of music – and why our brains respond in the way they do. Will soften the hardest of hearts, and the staunchest of cynics.
Buy | £5.89
[Threads] the girls are Tote Bag
Obvs the best gift you could ever buy for anyone, this limited edition the girls are tote bag is designed by illustrator extraordinaire Holly Dinsdale.
Buy | £8
[Book] Ed. Julia Downes – Women Make Noise: Girl Bands from Motown to the Modern
The ever-talented (and TGA chum) Julia Downes has amassed a collection of comprehensive essays and interviews covering everything from The Modettes to Bikini Kill, in this intelligent, about-time celebration of women’s LONG STANDING contribution to music. Gloriously nerdy.
Buy | £10
[Book] Jessica Hopper – The Girls Guide to Rocking
A little bit patronising, but this is a great book for any teenage girl interested in music – and starting a band. It trawls through everything – from finding the right instrument (even if your hands are too small), choosing your amp, and songwriting, to home recording and how to promote your own gigs. It might be the sweet little kick in the pants your sullen teen needs.
Buy | £10.99
[Threads] “Hit It!” T-Shirt
As usual, the boy version of this *awesome* tee design from Threadless is a million times better than the girl version. Able to grow a magnificent beard? You could also look ^^ THIS good. We want it. Hard.
Buy | £10.99
[Book] Peter Benjaminson – Lost Supreme: The Life of Dreamgirl Florence Ballard
The heartbreaking story of Florence Ballard, the late great vocal talent behind the early Supremes records (before Barry Gordy RUINED everything and ultimately made Diana Ross the huge star she is today). Not familiar with her work? Read this book, and listen to this song.
Buy | £11.25
[Tech] Wings Ear Bud Headphones
Your chance to look like The Mighty Thor. Every. Single. Day. Super-hero your ears up this Christmas, with these neat little winged ear buds. Normally we hate shoving things into our ear canals, preferring a sound-cancelling aural cocoon instead, but as travelling ear-candy goes, these are pretty aces.
Buy | £12.00
[Art] We Got the Beat Print
We got the beat, we got the beat, we got the beat. YEAH. WE GOT IT. Well, we wish we had it. We might buy it. Then we’ll have it. YEAH.
Buy | £15
[Subscription] Tom Tom Magazine
Ba-dum-TSH. You know those annoying people who tap-tap-tappity-tap on every goddamned surface, all the goddamned time? This is what you should buy them this year. Subscribe to the brilliant Tom Tom Magazine for 2013, for the bargain price of £18. It is one of our favourite magazines ever. Doncha know.
Buy | £18
[LOLZ] Cat Scratching DJ Decks
With a new kitten at TGA HQ, we’ve had our eye on this. Crank up the stereo, and watch your kitty turn into a superstar DJ. Oh, and please take all the pictures and send them to us.
Buy | £20
[Gadget] Plectrum Maker
Here at TGA, we’re vehement recyclers and upcyclers – so if you’re looking for a gift to buy us, this might just be the one. Not only can you make your own plectrums, but you make them from old bank / credit cards. Which will ultimately prevent us from spending more money on DJ-style scratching posts for cats.
Buy | £22
[Tech] Radio Receiver Kit
This beautifully packaged little treat allows you to build your own ‘crystal radio’ AND read about the history of the radio itself. Geektastic.
Buy | £24
[Book] Karren Ablaze – The City is Ablaze!
A weighty, TGA-endorsed, coffee-book collection of Ablaze’s fanzines: “We all know that there’s, thankfully, a multitude of books now available about Riot Grrrl or herstory and feminism in music but what’s powerful about The City Is Ablaze is that instead of isolated facts and theories, here it has context; here it shows where it came from and what it came out of, making this more than just a good read or a smirk-invoking trip down memory lane – it also makes us proud”.
Buy | £25
[Threads] “Transition” Hoodie
We’re not sure why the picture shows a t-shirt, but it’s the hoodie version of this Escher-inspired design we want. Snazzy.
Buy | £29.99
[Tech] DIY Speakers Kit
We’re not sure this needs much more explanation. MAKE YOUR OWN SPEAKERS. Soldering. Getting handsy.
Buy | £34
[Tech] Build Your Own Ukelele
We bought this for someone last year and it went down a treat: your uke kit comes with a pre-prepared body and neck, leaving you to assemble, and string your hand-crafted instrument. And then you get to decorate it. And play it. *giddy*
Buy | £34.50
[Tech] Portable Turntable
Battery-powered mini turntable featuring an FM transmitter that hooks up with your radio, a manual return tone arm and a diamond stylus needle, a USB port for connecting to a PC or Mac, and a software suite for ripping and editing audio content. Ultimate nerdery.
Buy | £50
[Tech] Aerial7 DIY Tank Headphones
EAR PORN. As you may have guessed, we love a crafty, DIY gift – and it doesn’t get much better than this. Nice, chunky headphones – left blank, for YOU to design. Whether that is with an airbrush, spray paints, pens or ink, it’s up to you.
Buy | £56
[Craft] Red Cassette Needlepoint Kit
Make your own cassette-shaped purse / iPhone / iPod / cassette holder. For a bargain £60. More of a labour of love this one.
Buy | £60
[Tech] Plattan Harris Tweed Headphones
Harris Tweed is the only fabric in the world that has its own Act of Parliament to ensure its authenticity. Fancy ears.
Buy | £80
[Tech] Apple iPod nano 16GB Silver (7th Generation)
We’ve never quite gotten over using our iPhone as an iPod. There’s something almost dirty about it. The 7th generation iPod is a slim jim, boasting radio and video capabilities.
Buy | £115
[Tech] Beats Solo HD Headphones
The must-own headphones of 2011/12, despite being around since 2008. They show no sign of waning in the ‘cool’ stakes – and handily, are rather beautiful with robust sound quality. We love the pea green ones.
Buy | £125
[Tech] Revival DAB Radio
Tune into Ruth Barnes on Amazing Radio on this bad boy. The iconic ‘Revival’ DAB radio is a nostalgic 1950s style retro radio with advanced DAB features – and an example of divine design.
Buy | £160
[Gadget] Black iHome Boombox
Instead of fannying around with cables, connecting your iPod to your hi-fi, why not invest in this beauty? This beefy dock caters for the iPod and iPhone, has an FM tuner, and two 4″ woofers. Tasty.
Buy | £200