No cash for gifts? Share you taste in music instead
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Luke Maguire Armstrong doesn't pen a holiday letter to friends. The guitar player and songwriter prefers to communicate musically.
Armstrong makes a CD that he shares with friends and family each Christmas. It contains songs that reflect the places he's visited. Or how he's felt during the year. He includes a note about how he discovered each song. Recent CDs, for example, have helped tell the stories of his travels throughout Central America.
"I choose the songs that had the most impact on me," said Armstrong. He divides his time between New York and Antigua, Guatemala. "It's a way for me to stay in touch with a lot of people and get everyone something."
Sharing music is a great way to connect with friends, and technology has made it easier than ever, says Kristen Chase. She is publisher and CEO of coolmompicks.com. The website covers trends in technology. Chase has a degree in music therapy.
Music lovers can create and share playlists in a variety of ways, Chase said. She recommends Spotify. It's a digital music service. It has access to millions of songs. Users can search for songs online to share with friends and family.
Tyler Hayes is a writer in San Diego. He suggests asking friends what website or app they use to listen to music. Then share a playlist through it. For example, in addition to Spotify, he has shared songs using Beats Music and Rdio.
Heather Browne of Colorado Springs, Colorado, looks forward every fall to creating a 20-song Christmas/holiday playlist. She shares it with friends, family and readers of her music blog.
"I try to find songs with some sense of nostalgia, some sense of wonder," she said. "It takes a lot of work. I get wonderful, emotional feedback from people from all around the world. That makes it worthwhile."