Have you ever met someone who dislikes music? Can that person be trusted? One thing’s certain: most of us love music and it’s a part of our everyday lives. It’s universal and speaks to each individual’s lived experiences. Whether you’re a music maker or just someone who enjoys listening to it, you might want to show your love with a music-inspired tattoo.
There are many different ways to show your love of the tune. Perhaps there’s a certain instrument you have an affinity for or even a format you enjoy listening to your music on. For instance, many people who collect vinyl records are passionate about it and will often get tattoos inspired by record players or even speakers. If you love all the instruments and formats, then another inspiration might be a band or an artist you thoroughly enjoy and admire. There’s no right or wrong way to do a music tattoo. We decided to avoid the deep cuts and instead explore some fresh ink to see what tattoos people have recently gotten. Here are 30 fresh music tattoos that are so good you’ll want an encore.
Phonographs and gramophones are a hot tattoo trend right now. This is a very classic design, but some people have designs that imagine the horn as a flower or other objects.
Wow! This very colorful piano tattoo is super stylish. It’s vibrant and full of life. In music, ad libitum means with great expression and this person took this design all the way there.
Some of our favorite tattoos are portraits of musicians. This David Bowie as Ziggy Stardust tattoo is mesmerizing. Would you get a musician’s face tattooed on your body?
When in doubt, get a photorealistic tattoo of a baby grand piano. Check out the reflection of the strings on the lid. What a feat.
This blocky boombox complete with cassette has us feeling all sorts of nostalgic. We love these flashy colors and the lighting bolts buzzing from the speaker.
A treble clef tattoo is a very common design you’ll see time and again. However, this tattoo is jazzed up with the addition of a floral pattern to give it even more character.
Pump the Bass
This photo was shared by the tattoo artist who completed it. The tattoo belongs to a bass player in a punk band. We love the watercolor effect here.
Wow. This black and grey tattoo is stunning. Music is so romantic so it’s no surprise that this design includes a gorgeous rose.
Leo Delibes Watercolor
We’ve got another phenomenal watercolor tattoo with this piece. We find sheet music set in front of the most delicate splashes of color. Remarkable!
As promised, we’ve got some viny lovers with tattoos to prove it on the list. This very minimal black ink tattoo of a record looks sharp.
For songwriters and composers, a tattoo of the concept is often hard to pin down. This design takes a very literal approach and we love it.
This tattoo of a guitar head is masterfully done. Done in the sketch tattoo style and incorporating watercolor red blotches of color, it’s an effective design.
Eat your heart out, Lisa Simpson. We’ve got a jazzy saxophone tat here that’s composed of a bunch of dots. Dotwork tattooing is a special skill that gives this design so much character and visual interest.
A Little Night Music
Have you ever been listening to a song and thought you’d like to bottle up the moment forever? This romantic scene captured inside a jar is so charming.
The famous Abbey Road album cover is reimagined in silhouette. We love that the shadows even have shadows here.
We did not set out to find a Cher tattoo, but a Cher tattoo found us. This photorealistic portrait of the iconic singer and actor really captures the star’s likeness.
Check the Mic
This vintage microphone conjures images of Motown and classic style. The use of color that’s reflected in the mic is absolutely stunning.
These gorgeous drums are done in a traditional style complete with a dazzling flower. It’s enough to make you want to dance.
Lennon, Marley, Mercury, Bowie
We’ve got some minimal portraits of a veritable hall of fame here. John Lennon, Bob Marley, Freddie Mercury, and David Bowie are instantly recognizable thanks to these smart designs.
Pull Some Strings
Classical music lovers can get in on the music tattoo game as well. This glorious violin placed delicately inside a blooming flower is excellent.
Mind the Music
Where your head at? In the clouds. This stunning design features a statue listening to music and losing its head. Do you ever hear a song this good?
We are very much into the cassette tape love we’re seeing in music tattoos these days.
Amy Winehouse and her iconic hair are given a stylized treatment in this tribute tattoo. The lyric “You know I’m no good” is included for good measure. Bravo!
This magical Stevie Nicks tattoo lives up to the legendary rocker’s reputation. Mysterious and enchanted, we’re here for all of these mystical vibes.
This tattoo belongs to a music producer and includes all manner of gadgets used during production. We love this 2-D design and the fun abstract shapes that bring it to life.
This portrait of the legendary guitarist Jimi Hendrix is lovingly done. You could not hope for a better outcome when getting a photorealistic portrait tattoo.
At the Heart of It
Do you feel like music courses through your veins? This heart tattoo with musical notes doesn’t miss a beat.
Wow! This Kurt Cobain tattoo is mindblowing. It’s the work of Steve Butcher who is an insanely talented tattoo artist who specializes in portraits.
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Women rock! The guitarist with this tattoo proves it with her design of a manicured hand holding a neon green guitar pick. What a fun tat!
There you go! 30 music tattoos that celebrate the power of music. We hope these thrilling designs inspire your next tattoo.
Andrew is a Chicago-based writer who enjoys finding the best of the internet, obsessively making lists, and cooking for friends. After studying Film and Art History, he developed a deep love for both topics. Celebrity news, pop culture, and stories that bring people together are his passions.
- 1 The Phonograph
- 2 Ad-Lib
- 3 Ziggy Stardust
- 4 Delicate Notes
- 5 Piano
- 6 Baby Boombox
- 7 Floral
- 8 Pump the Bass
- 9 Hot Mic
- 10 Leo Delibes Watercolor
- 11 Spin It
- 12 The Composer
- 13 Fender
- 14 Jazzy
- 15 A Little Night Music
- 16 The Beetles
- 17 Cher
- 18 Check the Mic
- 19 The Drums
- 20 Lennon, Marley, Mercury, Bowie
- 21 Pull Some Strings
- 22 Mind the Music
- 23 Mixtape
- 24 Amy
- 25 Stevie
- 26 A Production
- 27 Jimi
- 28 At the Heart of It
- 29 Kurt
- 30 Pick Me
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