A week ago today I returned from the NAMM (National Association of Music Merchants) show. It was completely off the hook (not to mention the after-parties at The Marriot and Hilton).
The four-day trade show took place in the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, California. It is basically a colossal trade show (imagine guitar center multiplied times 1000) where music retailers from all over the world get to make business and exhibit their latest gear. It is also the place where world-famous celebrities come to see what’s new, and where all the music industry heavy-weights are hanging out. It is simply any musician’s dream.
There are TOO many things to see at the NAMM show, so many that I don’t think it’s physically possible to see everything in only 4 days. Aside from hundreds of booths displaying the newest equipment in possibly every instrument you could ever imagine, there were also extremely valuable seminars.
I managed to fit in to my schedule the “Building a buzz and selling your music online: how to make the most of today’s internet music landscape (and double your sales in the process)” seminar. Bob Baker, author and Internet marketing expert; Ariel Hyatt, founder of Ariel Publicity and Cyber PR; Michael Laskow, President and CEO of Taxi; Brian Mazzaferri, Songwriter, Artist and Producer; and Tony Van Veen, CEO, President of Disc Makers/CD Baby, were the masterminds behind this fantastic discussion panel.
Other seminars offered were: “Industry Panel: Trends in Music Education,” “Math for Musicians: How to Read a Financial Statement,” “Seven Ways to Thrive in Any Economy,” and many, many more.
It took me a few days to recover from the madness that NAMM is; my body felt like it was run over by a monster truck, and my brain was in awe because I was star-struck from running into celebrities left and right. Celebrities such as Carlos Santana, Yoko Ono, Bono from U2, Taylor Swift, Jason Mraz, Maná, Stevie Curtis Chapman, Dragon Force guitarist Herman Li, Jermaine and Tito Jackson, Paul Gilbert, John Petrucci, John Myung, Serj Tankian, Mike Portnoy, Jeff Bowders, and Matthew and Gunnar Nelson were all present at the event, just to name a few. I was fortunate enough to bump into some of them while at NAMM. Click here to see pictures.
I did not waste a single minute of my time at the trade show. I made many connections, received 4+ job offers, engaged in great networking and made some nice acquaintances along the way. If you have any aspirations at all whatsoever of being in the music industry, then NAMM is THE place to be at.
Speaking of not wasting time, I was blessed enough to be able to spend a substantial amount of time with people whom I truly admire and look up to, Ariel Hyatt from CyberPR, and Peter Hodges, founder of I Heart Guitar Blog. Ariel has a one-of-a-kind music PR firm in New York. She has represented over 1,400 musicians, some of whom have been Grammy nominated. Peter Hodges is a guitarist and editor of the I Heart Guitar Blog. In his website you’ll be able to find reviews on the latest music gear, interviews and more! He contributes to magazines including Mixdown, Australian Guitar and Australian Musician Magazine.
As excited as you may be to attend next year’s NAMM, I must mention that it’s not open to the general public; however, you may be able to attend through: retailer/business employment, product demonstration as an artist/musician, membership (if you meet the criteria), guest invitation, merchants and manufacturers, etc.
See you there next year!