Over the course of four days, the Anaheim Convention Center was bustling with industry insiders, artists, retailers and innovators. Events such as the NAMM U Sessions provided a string of opportunities for anyone in the music industry looking to learn more about the business. The Breakfast Sessions, the Idea Center and a brand-new Retail Boot Camp, were all unique experiences that proved to be inherently woven into the fabric of NAMM.
On the floor, you could find everything from traditional brands like Gibson, Pioneer, Zildjian and Roland, to the Boutique Guitar Showcase (which featured an amazing collection of some of the finest instruments). There were educational opportunities, new music software and apps, exciting new lines, and like-minded people who came together from all over the world.
Walking around, it was possible to run into one of your favorite celebrities at any given time. Spotted this year were Corey Feldman, comedians Kate Flannery and Dave Foley, Josh Todd and Stevie D. of Buckcherry, Dwight Yoakam, Babyface and actor Thomas Gibson. Surprise guests would just pop-up and artists such as Stevie Wonder would end up performing for the crowds.
On Thursday, we saw musician Robbie Robertson receive the Music for Life Award from NAMM President and CEO Joe Lamond. On Friday, The She Rocks Awards returned to the Anaheim Hilton for their fifth annual event honoring Lita Ford, Garbage’s Shirley Manson, Esperanza Spaulding, Sarah Command and Ronnie Spector.
On Saturday, Ronnie joined The John Lennon Educational Tour Bus for their annual Imagine Party. The Lennon Bus features the latest audio and video technology, gear as well as products, and travels across the U.S. and Canada, providing opportunities for students of all ages. Ronnie’s outstanding performance at their 20th anniversary celebration even came with a special introduction from musician Jackson Browne.
The all-star lineup continued to dazzle on Saturday night at the 32nd Annual NAMM TEC Awards. Hosted by Sinbad, some of the night's big wins went to “Game of Thrones” and “Star Wars”, as well as companies like AVID, iZotope, Sennheiser and Solid State Logic. David Bowie’s Blackstar EP won in two categories. Aerosmith producer and engineer Jack Douglas was inducted into the NAMM TEC Hall of Fame. And, Joe Perry was honored with the prestigious Les Paul Award. The rocker dedicated the award to his manager Howard Kaufman, who recently passed away. Perry was then joined onstage by fellow Aerosmith guitarist Brad Whitford, along with his Hollywood Vampires bandmates Johnny Depp and Alice Cooper.
The NAMM Show is a world of harmonious wonder, jam-packed into four days of awesome. It’s a place where innovation and talent cross cultural lines and unite a community of creative individuals who have one common denominator: They all share a deep passion for music.