7 Christmas Gifts For Every Musician On Your List
Musicians are hard not hard to buy presents for. Most need almost everything from a gift card to the supermarket to coins for the laundromat. But if you follow the "teach a man to fish" adage, help your musically inclined friends (or yourself) learn to make a living in music. Below are 5 books that should be under every musician's tree, one to read just for enjoyment and a piece of gear that I've fallen in love with.
- All You Need to Know About the Music Business (7th ed.) by Donald Passman. The is the bible. Every musician should turn to it when they don't understand how the business works.
- Music 3.0: A Survival Guide for Making Music in the Internet Age by Bobby Owswinski. This great new book draws heavily on interviews from the trenches of the music industry including yours truly.
- Indie Business Power - A Step-By-Step Guide For 21st Century Music Entrepreneurs by Peter Spellman. If your favorite musician needs to develop a business plan (and they should), this is the best place to start.
- Music Success In Nine Weeks by Ariel Hyatt. This essential guide to social media and online PR from indie music marketing's most popular guru teaches how to increase visibility and build a fan base without a big budget.
- Here Come the Regulars: How to Run a Record Label on a Shoestring Budget by Ian Anderson. He launched Afternoon Records when he was 18 and now shares his experiences alongside lots of practical advice
- Stories Done: Writings on the 1960s and Its Discontents by Mikal Gilmore This one's just for fun and what a ride it is. With brief but insightful stories, Gilmore makes you feel that you were in the room with the 60's most interesting counter culture authors and musicians like Ginsberg, Garcia, Thompson, Dylan, Johnny Cash and more.
- Last, but not least, my favorite new gear is the Sonos Multiroom Music System. I said yes when they asked me to test drive the Sonos, and then hesitated. Bob Lefsetz wrote that, while he love his Sonos, it had been a bear to set up. Well, Bob needs to get to work on his gee because the Sonos is both easy to set up and a joy to use. It's changed my musical life. My entire collection, thousands of broadcasts, Pandora, Rhapsody and more are now available via a single controller in almost every room in my Roanoke, VA home. Sonos isn't cheap, but like the data bill on your smartphone, it's definitely worth it.