Welcome to this year’s guide to gifting for the musicians in your life.
We’ve split the guide into various categories or types of musician you might want to buy for, and within each are gifts at various price ranges.
Hopefully there is something for everyone this holiday season.
For those showing a desire to learn to play a keyboard instrument, you should understand what kind of music and experience they are most likely to enjoy.
Is their primary interest in the piano, or instead in electronic music. Do they show an interest in synthesisers, or perhaps they are an ‘all-rounder’ who just likes experimenting and learning to create sound and melody.
Bear in mind that some people get very excited about a possible new hobby, only for it to dwindle and die a few weeks or months later. For this reason, it may be worth investing a relatively small amount of money into an instrument, equipment or software, and let them build from there if they keep up the interest.
These stickers are ideal for affixing to any size piano or keyboard instrument, and help with the finding and recall of notes based on their alphabetical names. They stick easily, don’t damage the keys, can be removed, and are smooth and can be barely felt during playing.
For those practicing on a full-size (88 key) piano or keyboard, this chart shows the notes and positions on the musical staff. It’s double sided, with the reverse showing finger exercises.
This great beginner’s guide also provides an easy introduction to reading and playing music – so whether you have no previous musical experience or are simply new to the keyboard, this clear and concise guide will have you playing tunes on your new keyboard in no time.
Includes easy-to-follow instructions and illustrations, simple exercises, and fun and easy songs. Available in paperback or spiral-bound.
61-key full sized keyboard with 400 honest, 77 accompaniment styles and 60 present songs, a dance music mode, ability to connect to iOS/Android learning app, plus a collection of accessories including stand, power supply, headphones, USB cable and software.
Feature Packed Digital Piano for Beginners – Portable Electric keyboard piano with 61 premium piano style keys and built in speakers for practicing and performing to your friends and family
Add this colorful LED bar to the back of your piano keyboard and then use a smart device app to help you learn music by following the lights. Similar to the features offered by lighted keyboards, but also with the addition of just looking quite cool.
EZ-300 is a 61-key, touch-sensitive keyboard—specially equipped with lighting keys, and designed as an entry portable keyboard model for the first-time players. Stylish and comprehensive, it allows you to practice, play and perform with a variety of lesson functions and authentic instrument sounds.
Fun and inspiring keyboard for beginning musicians. Loop Mix allows you to build songs by simply playing notes on the keyboard. Manipulate the sounds of your loops with intuitive one-touch control. Bluetooth audio/MIDI support for connecting with your smartphone or tablet. Over 500 pro-quality sounds: pianos, synths, strings, bass, brass, and more.
Children, particularly younger ones, can be notorious for picking up and dropping interests from month to month, so it is worth taking a similar approach to beginners, and not spending huge amounts of money to begin with.
Getting an electronic musical instrument which can do a variety of things can help them to decide what types of music-making they enjoy the most. If they stick with the hobby, you can invest further in their musical journey further down the line.
Feature Packed Digital Piano for Kids – Portable electronic keyboard with 32 premium mini piano style keys with power via USB or 4 AA batteries. 300 voices (including Acoustic Piano, Electric Piano, Strings, Organ, Synth, Drums and much more); built in speakers that deliver room-filling sound, plus headphone jack. 40 Demo songs; accompaniment mode with 300 built-in rhythms; built in record feature for recording performances.
Although roll-up keyboards aren’t necessarily of the highest quality, they can be a fun and convenient introduction to music making and keyboard technique for beginners. This model claims to have an improved interface and feel, with the ability to play up to 3-note chords, a variety of sounds and accompaniments.
Aimed at complete beginners, children can easily follow the clear and simple diagrams and pictures to learn their first notes, play fun tunes and gain confidence playing their first keyboard.
This great beginner’s book also provides a fantastic introduction to reading and playing music, includes a fun pull-out Wall Chart to help with practice, and will have kids playing their first tunes in no time.
Suggested for children aged 5-9.
An ideal starter keyboard. 61-key, entry-level Portable Keyboard featuring a wide variety of sounds and functions the PSR-E263 is an ideal first keyboard for aspiring musicians who are just starting out.
PSR-E463 is the best entry keyboard for performing various styles of music, from the latest to vinyl favorites. It has a 61-key touch response keyboard with powerful on-board speakers and easy-to-use professional features like assignable Live Control knobs, Quick Sampling, Groove Creator and USB Audio Recorder.
Pianists may well already have either an acoustic or a high quality digital piano, so buying a new instrument is unlikely to be an option from a friend or family member.
Once you know what styles of music they enjoy playing the most, perhaps buy them some new sheet music in that genre. Alternatively, you could buy something traditional like a metronome or another small accessory which will help their playing.
There’s always the option of novelty items, which we’ll cover later on.
This classic mechanical metronome is ideal for musicians who want to improve their sense of rhythm and timing, and offers a degree of elegance and with no need for batteries, phones, apps or the like.
Helps you to build hand and finger strength and dexterity, with customisable tension. Ideal for pianists.
The bench features high-gloss finish and solid wood frame and legs. Padded PU leather seat leaves you comfortable seating experience. Storage compartment is beneath the seat. You can place musical notation, books or other flat items.
Keyboard players, in the main, are a group of musicians who are often looking for the next piece of equipment or add-on to enhance their creations.
They may well be interested in piano music as a part of their music-making, but it certainly isn’t their only appeal. They may well love the additional features found on many mid- to high-end music keyboards, and may also appreciate add-ons or even everyday accessories to replace existing equipment which could be wearing out.
Unless you know exactly what types of equipment they like, or they have a wish list you can choose from, it may well be worth not guessing about new equipment. Tech-minded musicians in particular can be quite picky when it comes to the gear they choose to own, and how it all fits together.
Essential for allowing a MIDI keyboard to be connected up to a laptop or PC to enhance music making and inputting data into DAW software.
Premium protection, Introduces a breathable layer to keep your keyboard clean and safe against dust, dirt and wear. Made from Spandex and nylon, fits most 61-76 key keyboards.
An ideal little controller keyboard for anyone already using or wanting to get involved with Ableton Live, but also usable with other DAW software. Includes many controllers, creative arpeggiator, fixed chord mode, and MIDI out.
PSR-EW410 is the best 76-note keyboard for performing various styles of music, from the latest to vinyl favorites, featuring a high-res piano sample, powerful on-board speakers and easy-to-use professional features like assignable Live Control knobs, Quick Sampling, Groove Creator, USB Audio Recorder and optional subwoofer.
Much like keyboard players, but arguably even more specialist. There is also the increasing probability they’ll have their eye on vintage gear at eye-watering prices.
For these people, it may be better to get something smaller and ‘token’, or perhaps look to subscriptions or interesting software/apps.
For the synth musician who has everything — more patch cables! You can never have too many patch cables.
3 NAND oscillators and a volume control. On/off power switch for dive bomb/laser effect. On/off switches for the two gating oscillators. CV SAG input powers the entire circuit with control voltage: plug in a sequencer, envelope, LFO, etc (up to 12V). Takes 9V battery or 9V center negative power supply (not included)
Monophonic Semi-modular Analog Synthesizer with VCO, Included CV Expansion Board, 13-note Keypad, VCA, LFO.
Make music anywhere with Orba by Artiphon, a handheld synth, looper, and MIDI controller. Loop Drum, Bass, Chord, and Lead parts to create songs on the fly. Use Tilt, Shake, Bump, and other gestures to play the touch-sensitive pads and control Orba with the way you move.
A tiny synth that can be connected to a Business Card Sequencer, other synth gear, or played by itself.
The Teenage Engineering PO-32 is an advance drum synthesizer that features 16 preset sounds, which you can swap out via VST data transfer. You can combine PO-32 with a MicroTonic Plug-In (sold separately) to create new drum sounds. Easily transfer VST files via microphone or line-in jack. The built-in step multiplier enables you to repeat selected sounds. You can also create a whole full song with the onboard 64 patterns and pattern chaining. You can use this Pocket Operator alone with the use of the onboard Knowles speaker. No need for external gears. The PO-32 has 5 sync modes so you can use it as a master or slave unit. You can also connect it with external devices like computers, volca, or SyncKontrol.
A synthesizer like no other, MicroFreak is a peculiar, exceptional instrument that rewards the curious musician. It blends wavetable and digital oscillators with analog filters. It features a unique poly-aftertouch flat keyboard. It adds controlled randomness to sequences. This isn’t a revolution, it’s a mutiny. This out-there little music machine features a versatile digital oscillator so you can create rare and interesting sounds with ease. Modes like Texturer, KarplusStrong, Harmonic OSC, and Superwave give adventurous musicians the chance to explore totally new, unheard possibilities. Like having dozens of synths in just one instrument, both wild-eyed newcomers and seasoned professionals will fall in love with MicroFreak’s flexible, powerful synth engine. Physical modelling, wavetable synthesis, virtual analog, there is nothing as complete and exciting as the MicroFreak oscillator on the market. It’s hard to believe from such a small synth, but here it is, ready for you to explore. Excite your creativity and reward your curiosity with a large, diverse sound palette. MicroFreak features 11 awesome oscillators, 4 bespoke Arturia engines, and 7 modes from our friends at Mutable Instruments. Inspired by the trailblazing 12-dB Oberheim SEM filter, you can make MicroFreak’s filter scream or whisper to taste. The filter is state-variable, and can even auto-oscillate! You can use this is any way you like, from taking the edge of the razor-sharp wavetable sounds, or automating the cutoff by modulating it with keyboard pressure or the in-built sequencer. Record up to four automations, edit notes per step or use the innovative Spice and Dice sequencer functions to find happy accidents. Add randomization to create evolving, original patterns, and virtually rewire and reconfigure its signal chain and controls with the 5×7 modulation matrix.
Korg’s legendary Wavestation introduced the world to Wave Sequencing transforming raw samples into sounds that no-one had ever heard before. The flagship OASYS and KRONOS keyboards developed Wave Sequencing even further, expanding on its unique palette of lush, evolving pads and driving rhythms. Now, Korg is proud to announce the next step in digital synthesis: the wavestate. Featuring the radically re-imagined Wave Sequencing 2.0, the wavestate delivers astonishing, ever-changing sounds with extensive hands-on control.
With the Wavestation, each step of a Wave Sequence had duration, a sample, and a pitch. This created ear-catching patterns–but the patterns repeated the same way, over and over. Wave Sequencing 2.0 splits apart the timing, the sequence of samples, and the melody, so that each can be manipulated independently. Also added are new characteristics including shapes, gate times, and step sequencer values.
The wavestate’s superb effects deliver production-ready sounds. Each Layer has three dedicated effects; additionally, the Performance has a master reverb and parametric EQ. Along with standards such as compressors, EQs, choruses, flangers, phasers, and stereo delays, you’ll find distinctive processors such as the Wave Shaper, Talking Modulator, Reverse Delay, Multiband Mod Delay, and Overb (from the OASYS), plus modeled effects including VOX guitar amps, VOX wah, multi-head tape echo, and a collection of classic guitar pedals.
Add vintage character to your sounds with the aggressive MS-20 Lowpass or Highpass filters, or the strong, sweet Polysix Lowpass. Shape and refine with a full collection of resonant 2-pole and 4-pole Lowpass, Highpass, Bandpass, and Band Reject filters.
Performing musicians probably already have a fair idea of their style, and the kinds of equipment they like to use, and would aspire to getting.
Keep those hands warm before and in between performances. Ideal when the venue is less than toasty.
Take The Warm-Up Room With You! Reduces User Sound By Up To 30 dB. Includes Removable Strap For Hands-Free Use. Product Is Waterproof For Easy Cleaning And Use In The Shower. Includes Cloth Carrying Bag.
The classic vocal mic, you can’t really go wrong with this. For the singer-songwriter who wants control over all their equipment (so you’re relying on the beaten up germ-ridden mics at a live venue).
Gets good reviews for its wide frequency response and powerful output, featuring a 12” BUGERA woofer and custom-made 1” driver, integrated digital effects processor, feedback detection system and 3-channel operation.
Novelty and Miscellaneous Items
Novelty musical items can be terribly cheesy and, depending on the recipient, may or may not be appreciated. Getting something quirky with at least a pinch of usefulness may be the way to go, but it does depend on the item and the person being gifted.
Made of twisted metal, this decorative tabletop figurine is great for displaying in any musician’s music or living room.
A great way for your pianist friend tor family member to look smart and profess their musical interests at more formal gatherings.
Set of 4 silicone rubber bracelets with inspirational quotes and sayings about music.
These music note cards are each blank so you can write in your own messages. These cards are perfect for for thank yous, personal invitations, congratulations, thinking of you, graduations, and more.
Vintage style patent art print depicts a piece of musical history, printed on high quality archive paper and measuring 8×10 inch.
Tie is split vertically with piano keys on one half and a musical score on a black background on the other half.
Necklace Pendant Music Note Symbol: Heart of Treble Clefs Pendant, “Music Is What Feelings Sound Like”.
Rubik’s Cube style but with musical notes and symbols.
A flat acrylic plate that creates a hologram-like illusion image, with seven color settlings and 2 modes.