Music is nothing anymore.
I don't mean it's dead. Here's what I mean: No matter the brand of a phone, everyone's got one. For most people, a device like that is the No. 1 vehicle for listening to music.
You'll see no slots for a CD on a phone, because digital music predated the phone and was a necessary step to bring music to a slim electronic device in the first place. In the world of digital, music is a code stored in a chip, and you can't see it or touch it.
So how do you give it to someone as a gift?
If the gift recipient has a phone or computer, she can access the music code and listen to it, just like if you have a record player you can listen to a record.
Maybe it's just me, but simply knowing I have digital music on my phone doesn't hold the same charm as perusing a good vinyl album sleeve while listening.
Listening to music has never been easier, but when we can't hold and admire music or its container as we listen to it, we risk undervaluing it.
If you want to give an album to a friend who is digital-only, what I suggest is to spice up the announcement and pertinent info. Most of the "digital downloads" I've seen in paper form are small, disappointing-looking rectangles with a tiny URL and a code. Get that business printed up nicely instead on a gift card by a local paper press artisan. Just a thought.
Continuing last week's theme, I'll close out here with more local music I'm giving to my friends, one way or another.
'Funky Mother' by Analog Son
Analog Son's members are spread out in the area, and the band tends to spread out for their shows, both in geography and in actual stage appearance. They've got fans all over the state and region, and they really bring the energy to their live show, along with backup singers and percussion rigs galore.
In "Funky Mother's" case, the live energy translates to the record. You can feel the heat from the physical copy, generated from the sizzling licks and funky beats therein. This disc (or spicy download) is a great gift, as it's a rare album that keeps up the same energy and focus from beginning to end. Dig it.
'The Velveteers' by The Velveteers
All the local music media are talking about this record and the duo behind it, for good reason. The grinding, swooping wail that is The Velveteers' sound carries quite an edge. At the same time, it's just balanced enough to listen to at work without anyone's opinion of you changing.
Maybe that's just my experience. It's an interesting production that uses width effects and the velvety layers of singer Demi's vocals to keep your attention glued. I love it. Give this one to the rockers on your list, especially if they're naughty.