Aside from the obvious – CDs of their favourite artists – just what do you buy a music lover? Because, let's face it, they already own every damn song ever released by whatever-band-they're-into, and if you're ever in proximity to them, you've been subjected to it too. What else is left to buy – apart from a decent pair of headphones so they can keep their songs to themselves?
Thankfully, there's plenty of options out there, whether it be for the general fan of all things musical, or for a wannabe-groupie of a particular band. Short of ideas? We got your back, homie.
Turntable – Vinyl is coming back, did you know? It may not be practical due to its unrealistic portability – you're hardly going to sit playing your records sat on the train now are you? – but some still swear by its superior audio quality. And well, for the hipster-type, it's just good to keep up appearances. The Crossley Cruiser is one of the more popular choices at the moment, available for around £60. [Buy here]
MP3 Player – Yes, yes, I know. The iPod. But – and this may blow your mind here – did you know that there are other portable music devices that aren't made by Apple? I'll give you a minute just to process that information. While it's true that a lot of other manufacturers dropped out of the market due to Apple's monopoly and the decreasing need for a specialist music player thanks to the rise of the smart phone, there are still plenty of viable choices out there. Sony still have a great range, sporting the same Walkman branding that their portable cassette players did back in the 90s. This NWZE585 is a couple of years old but it's tidy, has a simple interface and stellar audio quality – and you're not tied to using iTunes. [Buy here]
Speaker pillow – Forget conventional stereos. This is a PILLOW THAT PLAYS MUSIC. What more can I say, really? This baby sells itself. It's common knowledge that music helps lots of people fall asleep easier, and the Soundasleep pillow has a speaker embedded into it, for sleepy listening. For £15, it's an absolute bargain, too. [Buy here]
Tickets make a great gift. The only problem is that they're often sold months – sometimes over a year – ahead of the event, so essentially all you're giving for a Christmas gift is a bit of paper. Still, it's the thought that counts, right?
The other downside is that tickets sell out fast, so unless you're in there quick you'll likely miss out – or end up with seat Z342, with a partial view in the nosebleed section (i.e. not ideal.) The Ticketmaster site has a "just announced" section, letting you see what's set to go on sale, so keep an eye out to be able to jump in as soon as sales open. Going on sale today is Seasick Steve, Alfie Boe and Alice Cooper, in case you're interested. Not together, obviously. That'd make for one hell of an eclectic arrangement.
Just make sure you buy tickets from a reputable outlet. There are a lot of dodgy resellers on the 'net, and it could make for one pissed off gift recipient, when they realise six months down the line that their gift actually was nothing more than a piece of paper.
Yay, generic clothing and/or accessories with a band name that several thousand other people will also be wearing! Online shop EMP sell merchandise for a massive collection of bands – over 4,500 of them, apparently – and although I haven't heard of many of 'em, if you're buying for someone into thrash metal, this seems to be the place to do it. (Also, did you know that "melodic death metal" is apparently a genuine musical genre?)
For the more generic popular music fan, Truffle Shuffle has a big selection of cliché t-shirts, including "Frankie Says Relax", Guns 'n' Roses and Bowie. Just make sure you know what bands they like first before buying something. Obviously.
Personalised guitar pick – Nothing says "I love you" (or "I hate you", depending what engraving you want to go for) like a personalised guitar pick. Available on Etsy for £16, it comes in stainless steel and you can have any message (as long as it's not too long) hand-stamped onto it. It even comes in a nifty little keepsake pouch. [Buy here]
Music-themed cushions – Scatter cushions emblazoned in treble clefs, staves and quavers? We got you covered. This set of three cushions add a bit of musical culture to any otherwise dull living room. [Buy here]
Lyric posters – Not On The High Street sell customised lyric posters, as in you can choose any lyrics from any song you like, made into a pretty and colourful poster. I recommend something like Du Hast by Rammstein. Or maybe that new song by Robbie Williams. "Party like a Russian... end of discussion... dance like it got concussion..." Now those are some profound and meaningful words to hang proudly on your wall. [Buy here]
Build your own electric guitar – Why simply buy a guitar when you can build one? I very much doubt the thing will have the quality of a Fender Stratocaster, but hey, this one you build yourself. And it's only £65 so what can you expect? It'll make a nice project for the rainy winter afternoons. [Buy here]
Hip-Hop Colouring Book – Hip-hop says street cred. What doesn't say street cred is this bizarre phase of adult colouring books. And yet, here we are with a hip-hop colouring book. What a time to be alive. Get it for that hip-hoppin' gangsta' in your life. And watch them throw it back in your face. [Buy here]