Father’s Day is just around the corner and everybody is scrambling to find something other than a new tie to give dad. As a dad myself, I want to say thank you on behalf of your father for searching out a more creative gift!
If you’re reading this, that means that your dad (or your husband/step-dad, etc) is a musician. Whether he plays the guitar, bass, mandolin or other stringed instrument…it doesn’t really matter.
What matters is that you can capitalize on his passion for music by buying a gift that he’ll actually love and use. It’s the least you can do, right?
Below are a few gift ideas taken directly from my wish list as well as those of a number of musician’s I have polled. Everybody’s budget and wants are different so figure out what is appropriate and then check out the suggestions below.
- Father’s Day gifts under $20
- Father’s Day gifts under $50
- Father’s Day gifts under $100
- Father’s Day gifts for the tech-savvy musician
- Father’s Day gifts for those with unlimited budget
Father’s Day gifts under $20
Even if your budget is limited, or perhaps you’re buying on behalf of one of your children, don’t be discouraged. There are still a number of great guitar gifts under $20 that will put a smile on dad’s face.
Your biggest decision is going to be whether you want to buy him something specifically for his guitar (strings, picks, etc.) or something about the guitar (i.e. clothing, music, etc.). Here are a few ideas:
A New Set of Strings | $6-$15
Some guitarists are good at buying their own strings. They change them often and take care of their sound. Others, however, need someone to buy them a set just to kick their butt into gear to finally change them.
If you can, find a way to subtly find out which kind of strings that your dad or husband like. If that’s not possible, here are a few standard favorites:
- Acoustic Guitar: some of the most popular brands are Elixir strings (recommended), the awesome Martin strings and of course D’Addario strings.
- Electric Guitar: strings made by Ernie Ball (recommended) are well liked as well as those from Elixir.
Vintage Band Shirts | $14-$20
Certain bands tend to define a generation. Depending on when your dad, grandpa or husband grew up (or if they ever did?!), a reminder of these bands is a nostalgic trip through time.
Hopefully you know their favorite band but if not, just ask! A simple “Hey dad, when you were growing up, what was your favorite popular band?” works wonders. They’ll likely tell you truthfully and I can almost guarantee they won’t be tipped off to your reason for asking (we, as dads, are quite dense!). You’ll be surprised at the variety of band t-shirts you can buy online.
Fun New Set of Picks | $13
Pretty much the only time we as guitarists buy new picks is when we’re forced to (i.e. we lost our last one under the couch cushion). The problem is that guitarists are also quite picky about the pick thickness we play with. Some like it thin, some like it thick.
That’s why this set of picks by Pick Geeks is a great gift. First of all, it comes in a very nice metal pocket box that fits nicely in a guitar case. Second, it has an assortment of pick thickness, from extremely flimsy to solid steel. There’s something for everybody here.
An Awesome Coffee Mug | $15-$20
Does dad love coffee? This is a cheap and simple way to cater both to his love of coffee and his love of his favorite guitar brand.
Unfortunately, not every brand has a mug associated with it. Some of the easiest to find are Fender coffee mugs, Taylor Guitars coffee mugs, Guild Guitar mugs and Gretsch guitar mugs. If you’re looking for another, just check out the brand website and see if they sell them. You never know!
Father’s Day gifts under $50
Once we move up to the sub-$50 price range, our options for great guitar gifts for dad increase substantially. This is where you’ll need to know exactly what he has already so you can know what he would enjoying receiving.
Unique Guitar Clothing Accessories | $30-$50
My personal favorite, particularly for the dad who likes to dress up, is a set of guitar-themed cuff links. There are quite a few different kinds to choose from, which is cool. There’s everything from acoustic guitar links and electric guitar links to guitar knob links! That’ll put a smile on his face 🙂
Quality Guitar Stand | $30-$50
So yea, most every guitarist already has a guitar stand somewhere. It’s probably one of those crappy $10 stands that we’re always afraid is going to someday knick our precious guitars.
If that sounds like your dad – or perhaps if your dad has multiple guitars (in which case a multi-guitar stand might work well), a quality guitar stand is a good idea for Father’s Day. Perhaps a nice wooden stand by Taylor Guitars or a foldable guitar stand that is easily transportable.
Or, for a really nice gift, you can go a little above budget to get this incredibly beautiful wooden stand that he’ll be proud to show off.
Unique Guitar-Related Gifts | $20-$50
Is your dad, grandpa or husband one of those guys that seems to already have everything? If that’s the case, these are the gifts that are so unique, it’s almost guaranteed that he’ll be surprised.
Perhaps your dad loves wine, in which case a nice guitar wine holder might be appropriate. Or maybe he might be intrigued by a guitar-shaped lamp, a guitar-shaped lighter or if he loves to cook, a guitar-shaped cutting board. Each of these ideas is a sure-fire win 🙂
Father’s Day gifts under $100
Great Father’s Day gifts under $100 range from great guitar pedals to nice guitar art. You have a lot of options here, but honestly there are times when $100 is best given by allowing dad to use it for what he wants (such as a gift card).
Guitar Wall Art | $70-$100+
There’s actually quite a wide range of art that ranges from $30 to thousands of dollars, but we’ve put this in the “sub-$100” category just because there’s a lot you can do here.
Just think about where your dad, grandpa or husband plays guitar – are the walls bare? Is he the kind of guy that wants a sophisticated room or one that has Pink Floyd posters?
Guitar Pedals | $50-$100+
This is an admittedly hard gift to purchase for dad since you can’t be 100% sure which pedal he might want or need without asking. Still, when it comes to gifts for dads there’s one thing you should know: we really don’t mind if you ask! In fact, we sometimes prefer it.
Guitar pedals come in all shapes and sizes, including those which are super cheap and those which are more expensive. The most popular pedals are made by Boss but check with your dad or husband to find out if he has a specific one in mind.
Roadie Automatic Tuner | $99
Your dad has probably never seen one of these before, but any initial confusion will be turned to amazement as he figures out how this cool toy works.
Basically, the Roadie automatic guitar tuner works in conjunction with your dad’s phone to automatically tune the guitar (the device spins the guitar tuning pegs by itself) and help your dad keep track of how old his strings are and when they need to be changed. It’s a nifty little device that he’ll be eager to show off to his friends, I promise.
Father’s Day gifts for the tech-savvy Musician
Is your dad or husband the kind of guy that loves gadgets? Ok, fair enough…that might be a stupid question. If he has a tendency to combine his passion for guitar along with his passion for the latest cool gadgets, perhaps one of these gifts might interest him:
Handy Device Stands | $20-$50
Use of a phone or tablet is becoming quite common for musicians today, whether for a tuner, music sheets or even sound effects. What is not as common, however, are appropriate stands to hold such devices.
That’s where these specific device stands for musicians come in handy. For the phone you can use the awesome Castiv phone clip (works with most any phone) and for a tablet such as an iPad there are holders that connect to a microphone stand.
Guitar/Device Interface | $30-$40
In the age of smartphones and tablet devices, there are so many awesome things you can do when you connect your guitar to your devices. This includes phones, tablets and computers.
The best way to connect your dad’s guitar to his phone or tablet is using the new iRig 2 guitar interface. On top of that, Griffin Technology makes a programmable stomp pedal that connects to the iPhone or iPad for use with digital effects. Finally, there are literally hundreds of way to connect the guitar to the computer, the easiest of which is the Behringer USB guitar interface.
Father’s Day gifts for those with unlimited budget
Is your dad the envy of every other guitarist? Does he have everything you could possibly imagine he could want? That makes it difficult for you as a gift giver…but not impossible. Check out these crazy gift ideas!
Marshall Amp Stack Mini-Fridge | $400
Now THIS is awesome! Somebody had the brilliant idea to disguise a mini-fridge as a guitar amp stack and the result is hilarious.
There’s a 99% chance your dad doesn’t have this and a 100% chance that he would love it. The only question is…is your dad worth $400 on Father’s Day?
A Travel Guitar | $150-$500
It’s not something we, as guitarists, think about often but having a nice travel guitar handy is great for road trips, vacations and maybe even business trips.
There are plenty of excellent travel guitars that don’t sacrifice sound despite their small size. These include the Baby Taylor, the Martin LX series and the Martin Backpacker. Be careful not to buy a $100 cheapo travel guitar…it will get thrown into the closet faster than you can say “Happy Father’s Day!”
Studio Recording Equipment | $299-$1000+
Purchasing studio recording equipment isn’t something you want to take lightly. If this is a gift you think fits for your dad, don’t go cheap!
Whether you want to get a simple studio recording pack with a microphone and interface to get started or if you want to purchase some high-end powered studio speakers, you’ll need to do your homework first (or go in-store and ask someone for help). Still, if you do it right, this can be an awesome Father’s Day gift!
Concluding Thoughts on Father’s Day
The truth is, most dads are perfectly content with the simple recognition that they, your dad, are one of the most important and special people in their lives. For me, I know that’s all I want!
However, a nice gift to bring home that point isn’t a bad idea either 🙂 Don’t sweat your budget, just find what you think your dad would most appreciate on the list above and get it before it’s too late! You’ll be glad you did.
Also, if you think there’s anything missing from this list, please leave a comment below and let me know!
Additional Gift Ideas for Guitarists