Great gift ideas for Vancouver music lovers
What do you get a music lover for Christmas?
Option #1: Tickets
Early January at the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra is looking amazing! Select from Beethoven's Ode to Joy, Mozart & Rachmaninoff or Respighi & Dvorak. I find this is a great gift for Mothers. If you have never heard a live orchestra, do yourself a favour and buy a pair of tickets so you can attend as well! Don't be put off by bland recordings of some distant fogeys. Live strings, brass, woodwinds and percussion are very much alive and an experience within themselves (not to mention life-changing compositions.)
Gift certificates to Ticketmaster also work great since they basically have a monopoly on major music events in Canada.
The PuSH (International Performing Arts) Festival is coming up fast in Vancouver, running from January 20th-February 6th, 2010. The festival is sporting a couple of unmissable audio events; the noteworthy 'So Percussion' and 'Sonic Genome'. http://pushfestival.ca/index.php?mpage=shows&spage=main&id=103#show
Option #2: A Musical Instrument
No one is ever too old to start learning a new instrument. If the music lover in question has expressed an interest in the possibility of learning to play music, receiving a gorgeous new instrument is great motivation to start. Buy a guitar at Rufus' Guitar Shop (10th and Alma) http://www.rufusguitarshop.com/sales.html, rent a piano for a family at Pacey's Pianos http://www.paceyspianos.com or buy Pre-owned at Showcase Piano's eBay Store: http://stores.shop.ebay.ca/Showcase-Pianos-in-Vancouver-BC__W0QQ_armrsZ1.
Smaller instruments like kalimba, recorder and melodica work great for young children.
Option #3: Accessories
I'm not talking about earrings and bags, ladies, think guitar amps, music stands and instrument modifiers. If someone you know is practicing hard at violin, why not get them a higher quality violin bow than they are using (try http://www.houseofviolins.com) or a hard rubber mouthpiece for a saxist, to improve their sound http://www.tomleemusic.ca/main/band.cfm?details=1&id=7&inv=29390 ? Just be sure to investigate the specifics of their situation. Whether the recipient is a beginner or an advanced player, it may affect the preferred material and shape of the mouthpiece. Also, different-sized saxophones call for different-sized mouthpieces: soprano is the smallest, then alto, tenor and baritone sax is the largest and deepest sounding).
Option #4: Audio Content
It's kind of hard to justify spending money on content that the gift-receiver may or may not be able to rip online for free. But let us remember, that it's the thought that counts. Nothing says 'yesssssssss' like full quality recordings or rare packaging of a band on CD that is closest to your listener's heart.