Whether a person's interests lean toward the Beatles or the Beastie Boys, there's no denying most people love listening to music. Music can lift our moods and help us through difficult times, and it can also make the good times that much more enjoyable.

Whether a person's interests lean toward the Beatles or the Beastie Boys, there's no denying most people love listening to music. Music can lift our moods and help us through difficult times, and it can also make the good times that much more enjoyable.

Come the holiday season, many people look to music when gifting friends and family. Though it's wise to avoid getting too specific with a musical gift for fear of offending personal taste, there are more general gifts shoppers can give that are sure to please.

• Gift certificate to an online music store: Most of today's music fans purchase their music digitally via a handful of online music retailers, be it iTunes, Amazon, etc. Find out which digital music retailer your loved one prefers and purchase a gift certificate to that retailer. This ensures loved ones will get the music they like, and all but guarantees the gift won't be returned.

• Protective headphones: The popularity of digital music has increased the popularity of personal digital music players that are often listened to via headphones. One significant disadvantage to such players is the long-term side effects they can have on hearing. Over time, if music-lovers spend lots of time listening to players with poorly designed headphones, they can do substantial and possibly irreparable damage to their ears. Protect your loved one's hearing with headphones that promise great sound quality without putting a person's hearing at risk. Protective headphones can reduce the risk of hearing loss and often provide superior sound quality than the headphones that come standard with some of the most popular digital music players.

• Music lessons: Younger music fans might want to try their hand at a favorite musical instrument or join a choir. For such youngsters, music lessons might be the ideal gift to encourage a hobby that's both healthy and educational. Those considering such lessons for nieces or nephews should consult the youngster's parents first, as Mom and Dad will ultimately have to deal with the consequences of having a young rocker around the house. For especially young kids, consider musical toys that are fun and educational.

• Concert tickets: Music-lovers almost universally agree that seeing a favorite band or performer live in concert is even better than listening in the car or at home. This holiday season, consider going the extra mile and buying a loved one concert tickets to see a favorite performer. When doing so, include a little extra money so they can purchase a T-shirt to commemorate the night.