It’s easy to find gifts for beginner guitar players, but what about the veterans, the pros, the ones who frequent music stores often and buy for themselves frequently? We’ve got a list of the creme de la creme of items that are guaranteed to delight even the most gear-laden player – some are inexpensive and others will set you back a pretty penny, but they’re sure to please even the most jaded guitarist.
1. A Setup/Checkup from our Luthiers
No matter how great a guitar is, every one needs a little TLC now and then and our Repair Shop can get that favorite guitar back to playing perfection. Our stem-to-stern setups make sure the intonation is correct, there are no burrs that might cause string breakage and covers many other points like neck relief, pickup and saddle height, nut slot height, checking the hardware and more. Approximately $50.
2. Presonus Audiobox 22VSL Audio Interface
Enable your favorite musician to get their songs down easily with this recording interface that just plugs into your Mac or PC – it’s one of our favorites for its great sound and versatility. It’s so easy to use – you can even use this as a mixer and send the processors, effects and EQ to your monitors live – pretty cool. It’s small and super portable too. Add on a Presonus Fader Port controller for even more hands on precision.
3. Vintage Martin Guitar
The pinnacle of tonal perfection to many, the old school build techniques and excellent woods used in these legendary pre-war instruments is the stuff of legends. A well played vintage Martin has a tone that is just perfectly organic, alive and full. Whether it’s a pristine ‘just found it under grandpa’s bed’ guitar or one that shows its battle scars proudly, a vintage Martin guitar never disappoints. If you prefer something new, you’ll find incredible tone and pure perfection in Collings Acoustics, Taylor Acoustics and newer Martin Guitars.
4. Leather Aces Strap
These incredibly durable straps also made our Top 10 Accessories list this year – they’re made near us in Desoto, Kansas and are beautifully crafted, but also have the real feel of vintage guitar straps that are built to last several lifetimes.
5. Strymon Pedals
These handmade pedals are incredible tonal tools packed with features – plus they’re a whole lot of fun in one stompbox. They’re not cheap but you’re getting wa-a-ay more than one pedal when you get a Strymon. One of our favorites is the Timeline – it’s not just a delay – it’s a mult-dimensional pedal that delivers the most lush tones you’ll ever get. This has a 30 second looper, you can save up to 200 presets and of course the Digital, Dual, Pattern, Reverse, Ice, Duck, Swell, Trem, Filter, Lo-Fi, dTape, dBucket features which are all, each completely tweakable – this is an infinitely fun pedal that won’t ever leave your board.
6. Helweg Custom Pedalboards
If you’re going for the coolest pedals ever, you’re going to want a killer board to transport them. The Helweg Pedalboards are hand crafted here in Lawrence, Kansas by guitar player and board madman Michael Helweg. These are made from exceptional materials and are ergonomically…well, perfect! Gorgeous, lush finishes and superb details. Also available to custom order.
7. Dr. Z Therapy Amp Head & Z Best Cab
The doc’s new Therapy amp takes the classic tweed to a new level and delivers plenty of clean headroom – but when you want to get down and dirty, it easily drives over to rootsy Americana and classic rock. Sounds killer with a Timmy Pedal or try it with your favorite overdrive pedal.
Dr. Z’s Tweed inspired Therapy amp head – clean headroom & rootsy rock!
8. Calton Case
These American made cases are simply the best you protection you get for your instrument, whether it’s a guitar, mandolin, banjo or something else entirely (they do custom orders for those oddly shaped instruments too!). Calton’s head honcho and killer designer, Jon Green, has brought these cases into the 21st century with even better fittings and a traceable RFID chip in every case so you can activate tracking if you’re headed out on tour. Whether you want to completely protect your prized Collings or vintage Martin, or you want to be 100% sure your favorite pawn shop guitar will stay intact on tour, this is the case to get. Note: new batch of cases due in soon.
The Calton Case – acoustic, electric, mando, banjo….whatever, this is the case.
9. I Heart Local Music 2015 Calendar
Lawrence music blog I Heart Local Music created this cool calendar that’s a bit of a spoof on ‘swimsuit’ calendars and celebrates local Lawrence bands. It generously benefits the Midwest Music Foundation which is an invaluable resource to Midwest musicians and venue workers for legal advice, health care, networking and so much more. Fun photos of Lawrence stalwarts like Tyler Gregory, Kliph Scurlock and more.
10. A Totally Different Instrument
What every good guitar player needs from time to time is a challenge – switching up your tools makes you look at your main instrument differently, lets you hear things differently and opens up your world. How about a mandolin – from the top of line Gilchrist Mandolin to the exceptionally built-yet-affordable Eastman Mandolins, these instruments are a blast to play and sounds beautiful. The Kala U-Bass – shaped like a uke, plays and truly sounds like a full-on bass – listening to it, you would never guess it was so small. Hohner Harmonicas – easy to play, easy to carry around, affordable and always fun.
Bonus – Mass Street Music Gear – What, you thought we’d make a list without our goodies?
MSM Gift Card
When you’d rather let them choose! Available in two formats – Email or traditional Card, plus our Gift Cards are available in any denomination.
60 Cycle Buzz Coffee
This powerful brew is roasted here in Lawrence, Kansas and is a special blend that our coffee-addicted staff researched with help from Z’s Divine Espresso. It’s smooth but powerful, and we do love our coffee. Pair it with our latest Mass Street Music Diner Mug for a great gift package.
MSM Diner Mug
These hefty, classic diner mugs keep your brew warm and feel great in your hand. These mugs have our logo on one side and “Making Music Taste Better Since 1983” on the other side.
With our logo and ridiculous “Making Music Taste Better Since 1983” phrase. It keeps your favorite beverage cold and well, it’s green.
MSM Cleaning Cloth
Our favorite cleaning cloth (and not just because it has our logo on it). These are small, super soft and really do the job. Also great for wiping down your strings after gig – keep ’em clean folks.