From $18,000 guitars to iced doggy cakes, Billboard offers presents inspired by what artists and execs hope to score this season.
"If I could be so lucky, my gifts would consist of a Puffco pen, Saint Laurent glitter boots and a sewing machine. I’d love to get my brother a vintage Busato guitar as a thank you for being my lifelong music guru.” -- Lizzy Plapinger, Vocalist, MS MR; Co-Founder, Neon Gold Records
An $18,000 acoustic gem: Musician, guitar expert and broker Matt Umanov has seen some memorable guitars during his 51-year career; he’s the guy who did work for Bob Dylan and Eric Clapton in the ’60s, after all. But the 1944 acoustic created by Bartolo Busato, one of Paris’ best luthiers of the Manouche-style guitar, says Umanov, is “one of the most amazing and fabulous models I’ve ever played.” That declaration alone speaks volumes.
"What I’m most hoping for is a family vacation at Andy Irons’ home in Kauai, Hawaii. It is the perfect mix of relaxation for me and surfing for my husband and two stepchildren.” -- Marcie Allen, President, MAC Presents
Situated on Hanalei Bay, the $4.3 million oceanfront three-bedroom with a pool that was formerly owned by the late surfing star is a prized rental (starting at $1,370/night). Phil Jones, of concierge service Pure Kauai (purekauai.com), recommends booking world-class surf instructor Russell Lewis while you’re there, and pinpoints May as the best time for a trip: “It’s that sweet spot before summer when it’s not super-crowded and the weather is perfect.”
"I’m hoping for an Audio-Technica Professional Turntable. I’m looking forward to playing Margo Price’s Midwest Farmer’s Daughter and the old Tom Jones albums I had as a kid — especially A-tom-ic Jones!” -- Steve Schnur, Worldwide Executive for Music, Electronic Arts
This highly affordable $249 model delivers on price and more: “You don’t need to buy a separate preamp and it’s USB-compatible, which is always nice for someone who might want to digitize their records,” says Sharon Bechor, manager of Rock and Soul, New York’s top DJ-equipment store.
"On my list to give: donations to the JBJ Soul Foundation and Detroit Water Project. Also, for me, YSL’s Teddy jacket and the Louis Vuitton Grigori backpack. Both are instant classics.” -- Eric Wong, Executive VP/GM, Island Records
Black and white is timeless, but the key to keeping it cool this season is playing with the details, which shouldn’t veer to other hues. “Keep what you’re wearing clean, polished and minimalist to achieve a modern look,” says stylist Zoe Costello (Vic Mensa).
"This holiday season, my dream would be to wake up with a lot more patience! I also always am a fan of simple and tasteful modern gold jewelry, and love H.Stern because it has very unique and fun pieces.” -- Gaby Martinez, Senior VP Marketing, Warner Music Latin America
It’s impossible to go wrong with gold. “People are looking for classic staples that they love that are a little bit more elevated,” says designer Michael Saiger, whose ASAP Rocky-endorsed Miansai line expanded to include fine jewelry this season. “For holiday gifts, what I really like is the simplicity of one of our thin screw cuffs with the pavé bar.” It’s effective enough to not need layering.
"I have a Goldendoodle named Idnit, short for ‘Idnit So Cute.’ I would love for him to have a doggy jungle gym in the backyard so he could play with other dogs whenever.” -- D.R.A.M., Rapper-Singer (AKA Shelley Marshaun Massenburg-Smith)
For the artist who has everything, focus on his or her furry companion instead. “When somebody pays attention to your pet, it’s a really nice connection,” says Bobbi Panter, who partnered with Outkast’s Big Boi on a line of natural pet shampoos that Ludacris and Snoop Dogg use to lather up their pooches.