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Holiday Gift Guide 2021: Music
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So this is the “new normal?” Or is it a return to the “old normal?” Either way, regardless of how you spent this past year, regardless of your thoughts on the world, politics, and economics of the world, furrowing your eyebrows at this or that or embracing all the necessary and arguably unnecessary changes in the world, one needs a constant personal and universal soundtrack to keep going, to keep sane, to keep grounded and inspired. As the newest round of the holiday season gets ready to dawn upon us, music not only acts as the perfect and always obvious choices for even the most discriminating of tastes, but also something that brings much-needed relief and communion to end another challenging year and brace everyone for what lies ahead in 2022. So as always, here’s my picks for some of the sonic highlights released this year, spanning all genres and tastes.

Check out our 2021 Holiday Gift Guide for Music.

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Holiday Geek Gift Guide 2016: Music
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Just like that, it’s that time again, where the holiday season is upon us and the mad scrambles down store aisles to find just the right gifts for friends and loved ones commences. It’s a yearly ritual that always seems to come sooner than later. It’s also a sign that the year is coming to a close, and of course there’s no question that 2016 will remain in memory and history as one of the most turbulent, challenging, and painful times ever seen. It is for that reason that the holiday time should hold even extra special positive emotional weight, as community and solidarity run high among people during this time, acting as sort of metaphoric concrete that fills in the gaps that division among many created. And music too, is an eternal, external, and ultimately internal healing agent for the soul, regardless if times are happy or sad, joyous or maudlin. Music also reflects those aforementioned emotions and more. Here’s some of the best released this past year that will for sure excite even the most hardened by the whirlwind of the times and warm someone’s soul like kindling a hearth on the coldest December nights.

Check out our 2016 Holiday Geek Gift Guide for Music

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$2 eBook Deal: The Handmaid’s Tale, The Lightning Thief, The Host & more!
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Today’s Gold Box Deal spotlight deal of the day over at Amazon today is a sale on select Kindle ebooks for $2.99 or less, in honor of the company’s two-year anniversary of Kindle Daily Deals.

Here’s some select titles from the over 65 ebooks on sale today (most are only $1.99):

The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
The Host by Stephenie Meyer
The Lightning Thief (Book 1 of Percy Jackson and the Olympians)
Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter by Seth Grahame-Smith
4:50 from Paddington Miss Marple Mysteries) by Agatha Christie

Note – this deal is valid only for today, Saturday, August 24, 2013, until 11:59pm PST.

Visit the main sale page to see all of today’s Kindle ebook deals. You can also browse the many titles on sale for $3.99 or less in the Monthly Deals, including the F. Scott Fitzgerald short story collection Tales of the Jazz Age (which contains The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button) for $.99 and It’s Only Rock ‘n’ Roll: Thirty Years Married to a Rolling Stone by Jo Wood (wife of Stones guitarist Ron Wood) for $2.99.

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Happy 70th Birthday To The Perennial Rolling Stone Mick Jagger
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This year, The Rolling Stones set a milestone as they celebrated their 50th anniversary. Now, another milestone gets set as it’s charismatic front man Mick Jagger celebrates his 70th birthday today.

Forty years ago, if you asked anyone, probably the band included, if the Stones, let alone Jagger, would still be performing in 2013, most people would have shook their collective heads in disbelief. In 1973, to imagine having not only that staying power, but the wherewithal and organic propensity to even WANT to continue playing rock and roll in what seems like an unofficial young man’s game, would have been scoffed at. But it’s precisely and exactly that which has happened, and from the looks of the success of the tour that just recently had a stint at London’s famed Hyde Park, in front of 65,000 plus adoring fans, there seems to be no sign of letting up.

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Ravi Shankar, Indian Music Legend, Dies At 92
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Ravi Shankar, who in essence almost singlehandedly brought Eastern “raga” music to the American shores and wound up influencing scores of famous musicians and bands, The Rolling Stones and The Beatles to name two, passed away in San Diego, CA, on December 11, 2012, reports The New York Times. He was 92. Shankar had suffered from heart ailments and underwent heart valve replacement surgery it was reported in a statement released by Shankar’s family.

Excelling on the sitar, an eclectic string instrument in which neighboring strings on the neck in essence resonate when a melody string is played, gave off a sound that was instantaneously connected with Shankar’s style and musical language. Shankar played like an extension of his personality, soft spoken, well mannered, respectful, yet with an attitude and a verve almost akin to a Jimi Hendrix.

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