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Music Lover Holiday Gift Guide

We all have that one person on our list that is impossible to buy for. Oh wait…that person is most likely you and me. Our love of music is insurmountable, and our families have no clue what to buy so here are some gift ideas to pass on (or to buy for yourself).

Soul Step Records Subscription Plan

Soul Step Records was founded in 2011. Owner, Melvin Dillon wanted to start making vinyl. He built a business plan to take care of the independent artists all while allowing them to make as much money as possible. A record label that operated as a non-profit? The traditional record labels haven't taken care of their artists - and Melvin wanted to change that. 

SSR makes stunning vinyl records for local and regional bands. The latest release – Automagik’s Goldmine (wax mage variant) sold out in 45 seconds! On the horizon SSR are slated to release a LP with Holy Ghost Tent Revival and a holiday 45 with Pet Envy & Matt Duncan! 

How do you get in the know so that you can get your hands on these vinyl? Sign up for a Soul Step Records Subscription Plan. No monthly fee and they do not want your credit card information. SSR will reach out and alert you when every release becomes available to subscribers. Any records passed up during the subscriber period will be fair game for pre-orders to the general public. Sign up HERE.

CincyMusic Tank, T-shirts, & Hoodie

Support local music in style.Not just tooting our own horn here (or are we?), but these are the most comfortable tanks, t-shirts, and hoodies known to man.Limited supply of some retired styles, so grab them while you can! Sale prices on ALL!

Buy CincyMusic gear HERE.


Table-Turned sends its subscribers new records in the mail each month. Instead of telling them what to enjoy, though, the service empowers subscribers to select the genre from two options. The records they receive each month will not only include some of that genre’s best but will also expose them to bands and albums they might have missed.

The Chicago-based vinyl subscription service Table-Turned has recently announced a couple of new label partnerships: Fat Possum ("Garage Rock") and SideOneDummy ("Ska-Punk"). Garage Rock subscribers are guaranteed a record from Fat Possum Records, and Ska-Punk subscribers are guaranteed a record from SideOneDummy Records.

Additionally, subscribers can now sign up for month-to-month payments ($15 per month for 12 months). For more information.

Roland R-07

If you've ever tried to record a band practice on your iPhone, you know that it's a far from an ideal setup. The excessive volume instantly sends your phone into the red, making the resulting audio extremely distorted. This pocket-sized recorder remedies the issue with a button that takes a quick sample your loudest playing and sets the input accordingly. That and other uses, recording interviews, grabbing song ideas, make this an ideal companion for quick, mobile recording. $199 at Amazon

Vibes Ear Plugs

Give the gift that keeps on giving: hearing loss prevention! These 3D-printed ear plugs are designed with concertgoers in mind. Special acoustic filters within the plastic frame lower volume equally across different frequencies, so that the earplugs don't muffle sound like their foam brethren. Best of all, they won't break your bank like custom-fitted plugs, which can cost hundreds. $24 at Amazon.

Vinyl Me, Please Subscription

Think record clubs are a thing of the past? Think again! Sign a friend up for this subscription service and they’ll receive one carefully curated “must have” album each month, paired with goodies like a complementary art print and custom cocktail recipe. It’s a project intended to help listeners reconnect with physical media and build deeper connections with their music. $29/per month at vinylmeplease.com

HearTek Kids Earmuffs

I asked for these on my baby registry. There was no way my baby was going to have a Mr. Holland’s Opus experience. These are a must have for all babies and toddlers. Not a chance we are going to miss an opportunity for our babies to check out a live show, but we must protect those precious eardrums. $13.99 at Amazon.

No Walls and the RecurringDream by Ani DiFranco 

No lies here, this is on the TOP of my list. In her memoir, DiFranco recounts her early life from a place of hard-won wisdom, combining personal expression, the power of music, feminism, political activism, storytelling, philanthropy, entrepreneurship, and much more into an inspiring whole. In these frank, honest, passionate, and often funny pages is the tale of one woman's eventful and radical journey to the age of thirty. Ani's coming of age story is defined by her ethos of fierce independence--from being an emancipated minor sleeping in a Buffalo bus station, to unwaveringly building a career through appearances at small clubs and festivals, to releasing her first album at the age of 18, to consciously rejecting the mainstream recording industry and creating her own label, Righteous Babe Records. In these pages, as in life, she never hesitates to challenge established rules and expectations, maintaining a level of artistic integrity that has impressed many and antagonized more than a few.

Purchase the pre-order for the book here

Let’s Go (So We Can Get Back) by Jeff Tweedy

It is no secret that Jeff Tweedy can write. As the frontman of Wilco and Uncle Tupelo, as well as a solo artist. His following is far and wide. Tweedy’s recent memoir is a dry-witted examination of his personal and career life. It is a must read of even the most casual fans. Tweedy is just as adept at writing nonfiction as he is songs. Purchase the book here.

Still shaking your head at what to buy that impossible music lover? Gift cards from Shake It Records, Morrow Audio, Phil’s Records, Everybody’s RecordsMole’s Record Exchange, Plaid Room Records, Herzog Music, or Black Plastic are always a good idea!