These gifts for music producers will have your artistic friend smiling, inspired and surprised. I’ve often found it pretty difficult to shop for artists of any kind. And if YOU’RE and artist, you certainly understand the struggle of explaining a potential gift idea to your Mom. This list will hopefully help all you producers and aspiring producers come the holidays.
Music Production is hard work. They spend entire days at controllers and staring at screens to get that perfect sound. It can be a maddening experience. However, it can all be worthwhile when we finally find that perfect groove or sample. When it comes to gift ideas, the key is to find a useful item to help make those maddening hours a bit more relaxed and enjoyable. The following gift list was built with that objective in mind.
A professional producer may be very particular about the equipment she adds to her disposal. However, an aspiring producer would certainly love the idea of building up their studio. While I’m a huge advocate of double-checking before making a purchase in this category, I’m hoping this is a good place for you to start.
1. Teenage Engineering Pocket Operators
Know a producer who is never short of great ideas? Gift them this unique synthesizer from Teenage Engineering. It’s a powerful synth engine with a clever interface. With a bit of inspiration, they’ll be sequencing everything from distorted electro-beats to glitch hip-hop.
2. Ableton Push Controller
Ableton Live is a powerhouse production environment that is used by producers of all genres. Along with their latest Ableton Live 9 software, the company has introduced a new controller into the fray. The Ableton Push is that glorious item. Velocity sensitive pads, chord progressions, and seamless plug-and-play compatibility with Ableton Live are just a few of the features you will find on this controller.
If you want to see a grown man (or woman) squeal with joy at the surprise of receiving the perfect gift, look no further than this item. This controller has received rave reviews and its intuitive nature will have you cranking out music faster than ever. Don’t forget to take a break every once in a while to eat!
3. Akai MPC1000
Very often, production involves sampling. The Akai MPC1000 allows the user to get down and dirty with chopping up audio samples and create rapid fire loops for some rough production brainstorming that leads to unique sonic ideas. Akai, a name that is trusted among music hobbyists and producers alike, is world renowned for their quality hardware builds.
WIth MIDI in and MIDI out ports, you’ll be able to plug your external controllers and create unlimited sound combinations.
4. Ableton Live
Ableton Live is a must have piece of software for those who perform live or wish take their production to the next level. With Ableton’s simple but powerful interface, users can create endless loop combinations and switch seamlessly between them to create entire songs in just minutes.
5. Motu 828x
Ask any producer what they need more of when it comes to production, and they will all give you the same answer: More outputs and inputs.
Boasting an incredible 28 inputs and 30 outputs, this interface offers nearly endless flexibility for experimentation with microphone placement and overdubbing, not to mention the time you’ll save by no longer needing to reconfigure inputs every time to track a new instrument.
6. AKG K712 Headphones
Did you know that producers hear music differently? They need to be able to hear subtle differences in frequencies and overall mix to make their music sound the best it possibly can.
In order to do this, they need specific equipment to ensure that what they hear and respond to is actually there, and not an false artifact of the speakers they are using. There are few things more important than the right type of sound monitoring device for producers.
If you want to give your neighbors a break from the “thud” of crafting a beat at all hours of the night, try picking up a pair of AKG K712 Headphones. You may even realize that you actually prefer listening to headphones over blasting music through your large monitors.
When it comes to well balanced reference audio for making complex edits, AKG quality and fidelity is exactly what you’re looking for.
7. KRK Rokit 6” Monitors
If you prefer the thud, we have just the speakers for you: A nice matched pair of KRK Rokit 6” Monitors will do just the trick. While there are many spendy options for studio monitors, KRK is almost impossible to beat when it comes to quality and value.
8. Wearable Recorder
Another one of our gifts for music producers always on the go. Find some great talent while traveling, viewing a show or just walking down the street? Trying to set the world on fire with your music? A wearable recorder makes it possible to easily record, save and share up to a minute of audio.
Fun Gifts for Music Producers
Everyone needs a bit of fun in their lives – especially when you’re drowning in work as an aspiring producer. Fin gifts are great because there isn’t as much pressure as gifts directly relating to the field. No need to worry that you aren’t getting the right piece of equipment. With these, it’s the thought that counts.
You’re sure to make a statement with these fun gifts for music producers…
9. Weird Instruments to Sample
A jaw harp is a perfect example of an odd musical instrument. This may sound a bit silly to you, but you’d be surprised what a creative producer can do with a track. Alternatively, get really DIY and try to make your own musical instrument.
10. Old Vinyl Records
If you’re looking for an inexpensive gift, you can’t go wrong with old vinyl records. The best place to pick these up are at local record shops, thrift stores, yard sales and eBay.
11. An Awesome Shirt
No one can ever have too many t-shirts. Find something related to producing and the music industry for a sure-fire hit.
12. A Cat DJ Turntable
Know a producer who also owns a cat? This silly turntable is sure to be great fodder for Instagram pictures throughout the year!
13. Mugs for Holding Caffeine
Long nights need to be faced with loads of caffeine to get you through. Round out the gift with a box of their favorite energy drink or coffee.
14. Flasks to Take the Edge Off
Because, of course.
Accessories are another low-risk gift for any creative type. These are things that you can’t quite have too many of, which make them perfect when you feel at a loss for what to get. We’ve included a few ideas here, but always reach out and ask the simple question, “What’s something you can never have too many of?” Their answers will be more insightful than any online article you could read.
But, we’re in the business of helping where we can. So, here’s a few ideas to get you started…
15. Gear Bag
Find a cool gear bag that accents your producer’s personality. Or, if nothing else, get them a staple black bag like this one.
16. Laptop Stand
Working on projects often means having multiple monitors up at once. A laptop stand is a great addition to any workspace.
17. Colorful Knobs and Faders
Keeping things organized and colorful brings a bit of brightness to those long studio nights. Colorful knobs and faders are a great accessories for any producer with a fun side.
18. USB Cables
As anyone with an iPhone knows all too well, you can never have too many high-quality USB cables. These pesky accessories are always getting lost or frayed.
19. Earasers Ear Plugs
When attending loud shows and gigs, it’s always important to have a good set of ear plugs.