It’s not always easy shopping for the music lover in your life. If they’re fanatical enough, they’ve generally already bought themselves the things they’re really dying for. The old fallback of a few records? Who knows what they want? Can’t go wrong with a gift card, I suppose, but what better way to say, “I dunno?” We’re here to help. Here are a few ideas for music-related gifts that might just pleasantly surprise that special, confounding consumer of music. Click photos for links.
1. The Gramovox Floating Vertical Turntable
For a while there, it was tough to find ANY new turntables. But with the resurgence of vinyl over the past 5+ years came the proliferation of turntables. Some of them are crap. The cheap-o portable ones at Target? Crap. There are luckily some good ones available from reputable manufacturers now, very much modeled on the classic turntable, with perhaps a USB connection for ripping digital copies. Then…there’s this. A whole new way to do it. Looks amazing, a piece of art, American made, with built-in speakers, and not that much more expensive than an average, quality record player.
We don’t get too political here at OurStage HQ, but I think we can all be glad that Election 2016 is about over. To celebrate, we combed our catalog for politically inspired songs that you might enjoy. Some of these are funny, some are angry, some have a thoughtful message, and some are…unclassifiable. But they’re all worth checking out.
Click here for the playlist. Below is a tracklisting and user’s guide.
Don’t forget to vote!
- Mr. President by Jimmy B. (hip-hop)
- Scandal by Adam Ezra Group (roots / rock)
- Your President by Joe Bagale (r&b)
- Why by openhiphop (hip-hop)
- One Love America by Sam C (hip-hop)
- Campaign Trail by The Filthy Addiction (indie rock)
- America by mallory (rock)
- Mr. President (feat. Y-Love) by AWKWORD (hip-hop)
- FBI by p*dubb and the special agents (punk)
- The President’s Men by D’Mangelo (hip-hop)
- Declaration of Independence by Clash of Civilizations (alt. hip-hop)
- New Constitution by Benny Moore (retro/indie rock)
- Commander In Chief by Pills Clinton (hip-hop)
- Our Devolution IS Televised by HUMANWINE (indie/roots)
- We Vote For Peace by STOP (classic rock)
California singer-songwriter Kris Angelis has been up on our charts with her song, “Rust,” and while we love that one, it’s a few years old now. So we were excited to hear that she’s got a new single called “Heartbreak Is Contagious” out now. And what’s more… it’s a great song. A pretty spare, acoustic arrangement, but cleverly produced, and perfectly fitting for the song. Available on Spotify and iTunes.
It’s another masterful pop jam from Brooklyn duo Late Cambrian, this time a mid-tempo, atmospheric track called “Hot Minute.” This is the fourth single from their upcoming EP, and it’s accompanied by a blissful, tripped-out and triple-exposed day at the beach video, featuring band members John and O, who also directed and edited the video themselves.
Following last year’s Do As People Do EP, Beecher’s Fault are back with a new single, “Life In This Light.” The new track is a complex hybrid, adorning the band’s folky rock with soulful, gospel-inspired backing vocals and ambient guitars, all of which get their moment to shine through a spare arrangement built on the rush and lull of complicated rhythmic patterns. And then just when you’ve caught up with the flow, the song launches into it’s final third, a driving rock beat with some classic rock guitar figures and vocoder vocals.
The song is accompanied by a lyric video with disconcertingly busy city-life images juxtaposed with sweeping landscape images, further emphasizing the duality of the music and the lyric’s preoccupation with maintaining perspective. Watch below.
We at OurStage and Amazing Media are excited to be partnering with McDonald’s of Hawaii for the NextNext search for the Sounds That Spark Change. We are bringing together Hawaiian artists with music fans and local charities in an effort to spread great music and help worthy causes. Here, we’ll highlight some of the artists who have already signed up to participate, so that fans around the world get a chance to hear this great new music. You can learn more about the competition below.
Though we have a lot of great solo artists participating in the NextNext Hawaii challenge, there’s just something about a band that not only sounds great together, but has worked and grown together for the better part of a decade. Honolulu’s Kings Of Spade are one of those groups with a special chemistry that defies the typically short life span of a band and results in a wholly original sound.
The band is beloved by fans for their high energy club-banging funk, but it’s their foundational soul influences that set KOS apart. Frontwoman Kasi Nunes frequently cites Aretha Franklin as a major source of inspiration, and when she sings you can hear her reaching deep and coloring her phrasing with the kind of nuance perfected by the Queen of Soul – the kind of you just don’t hear from many of KOS’ blues/funk contemporaries.
Kings of Spade’s self-titled LP was recorded in Nashville with Grammy-winning producer Dave Cobb (Rival Sons, Sturgill Simpson, Jason Isbell). Having won “Best Local Rock Band” in the 2014 and 2015 Honolulu Pulse Awards, they’ve spent the last few years expanding their fan base by touring the US mainland multiple times. Listen below, and check out Kings Of Spade on NextNext.com.
Designed to connect a community of artists and music fans around a positive message of helping important causes, NextNext Hawaii invites those artists to sign up and select a charity to sponsor. Fans, who can get votes by visiting any participating McDonald’s location in Hawaii, can listen to the artists on the free NextNext app, create playlists, and vote for favorites. With each vote, the artist’s selected charity gets a donation. At the end, the top-ranked artists will be awarded cash prizes, including a grand prize of $5,000 and the opportunity to have music released via Amazing Records.