NAMM 2017 Days 1-2 Coverage

NAMM 2017 Days 1-2 Coverage

January 30, 2017

That time of the year again. Another NAMM "the world’s largest trade-only event for the music products industry" show in the books. Each year me and Stephanie travel down to Anaheim to catch up on the latest in the music biz, cover some concerts and report it all back to you Rockaholics in Seattle and beyond. Nearly 100k people from around the world congregated to NAMM to wheel and deal, network, educate, perform and for us media types, try to cover as much as your body/feet allow you to cover. The trade-only business show National Association of Music Merchants covers close to 1-million sq feet of the Anaheim Convention Center. With the new 200k sqft being added now (check this display article: it'll definitely be over a million next year. I might definitely need a scooter to get around after how my feet and legs felt standing/running around for 15hrs a day this year.

Media Day 1.18.17 - See separate blog with photos here:

Day 1 - 1.19.17
View all Day 1 NAMM Photos HERE


Busy opening day looking at the schedule. Me and Stephanie usually go our own ways to cover more stuff and meet up here and there in day. We know one place we'll be at a lot is the KORG booth as Stephanie helps with Artist Relations Specialist "Bagel" in getting photos of all their great artist signings and private room shows. So before all that chaos I went around and said some hi's at our very own and local Mackie, still the best at provide high-quality recording and live sound gear! Across the way I went over to Schecter Guitars and checked out some of their latest designs, custom guitars and my favorite looking designs from Zakk Wylde and Wylde Audio. Go check out the amazing designs and looks of these guitars:

Ran into Jason Kertson at the Sonuus booth demoing the Sonuus Loopa, the world's first looper microphon for people walking by.

Check out the amazing engraved guitars from Zemaitis guitars. Total dug the styles and looks this company delivers that separates them from the rest. "Art With Strings" is what they call themselves.

My buddy Mike from Denmark (Ghost lightman) was in town and has never been to NAMM so I showed him around and introduced him to some folks. Sparkular - the first indoor fireworks simulators machine really got out attention!! Indoor fireworks display without the firework risks!! The product of the show I think!!
My first day ended into the late night after heading over to the Yost Theater to cover the Randy Rhoads Remembered event.



NAMM 2017 is officially open! On day 1, I found my favorite new product within 10 minutes of the doors opening. From ATV Corporation, comes the aFrame. An electronic drum that you can wear, hold in your lap or place on a stand. You can connect it to a looper and loop different drum sounds and then play the one you want to have the most control over. ATV is the new project of ACE Tone and Roland Corporation founder Ikutaro Kakehashi. He still has ideas to bring to us.

Moog always has one of my favorite booths. This year they had an interactive listening tour of their products. At the end, you gave back the headphones and saw if you won a prize. 

Thursday isn't usually a big appearance day but I did run into Seattle's Sinbad at the Audiocenter booth and right across the aisle, I caught a bit of DJ Kristaval demoing at Electro-Voice.

I listened to David Bowie's keyboard player, Mike Garson, tickle the keys of a gorgeous Kuai baby grand piano.

Now I said that Thursday's aren't usually a big signing day, but that doesn't mean there are no signings at all. Korg had the guys from PowerFlo. You may recognize a few of the guys from the groups Cypress Hill, Biohazard, Fear Factory and Downset that make up this band.

Later in the day, Korg also had a Doll Skin and One Eyed Doll appearance. Doll Skin is an all girl alt/pop/rock/punk band, from Arizona, managed by Megadeth's David Ellefson. Some of you may have caught their last show at Studio7. Check out Doll Skin's autograph photo card they are using, Mike took those photos behind Studio7.


One thing about NAMM, you can run into almost anyone at any time. I was headed over to Verdine White's appearance, at Cleartone, when I happened upon John Petrucci and Steve Morse. Not a bad little run in :)

Local harmonica god and member of War, Lee Oskar, had a new signature harmonica set on display. The last 2 years, we've sat with Lee on the plane ride back home but we didn't see him this time around.

Back over to Korg for Orianthi, Marty O'Brien (Lita Ford), and Warrant's Joey Allen, Eric Allen & Robert Mason.

Something magical happened on my way over to see Bruce Kulick. I came upon a huge crowd around a booth and could hear 70's diva Gloria Gaynor signing 'I Will Survive'. Yeah, that was special.

I ended the day with Bruce Kulick and made my way over to the NAMM Memorial special before catching my second wind and shooting RSO (Richie Sambora & Orianthi) in the Grand Plaza. (See photos HERE)


Day 2 - 1.20.17
View all Day 2 NAMM Photos HERE


Day 2 and I'm already beat ha! Hung out for awhile at the Morley booth with DJ Ashba as he signed away for fans and promoted his new Skeleton Wah Morley pedal! Info here:

Andy Manson had his mermaid guitar on display. I don't know what's more amazing the guitar itself or the actual guitar case ha!

Favorite part of the day was hanging with guitar wiz Gus G and shoot some photos/video of his private Korg performance.

YouTube guitar dude Rob Scallon was here today demonstrating his style and usage of Cleartone Strings. 

Our night after NAMM ended up over at the Anaheim Gardenwalk shooting for NAMMJam 2017! Featuring Buckcherry, Like A Storm, Doll Skin and more! For all of our show photos visit HERE!


I began Day 2 chatting with a local leather artist at Moxie & Oliver. She had all sorts of goodies. Straps, pick holders, banjo pick holders. She had a lot of other items as well. I wanted it all. You can find them at an on

Another innovative product I found was The Groupie. It's a cord keeper that has a tag for writing your band name, instrument the cord is for or what not. The Groupie fits over any cord tip and has a couple inches of velcro attached to it as well for keeping your cord neatly wrapped up when not in use.

This year NAMM sponsored a boutique guitars area. Our buddy Steven McSwain of McSwain Guitars had a few of his builds there as well as former Seattle builder Randy Parson. The king of those boutique guitars though was the mermaid. I can't even come close to describing it. Look at the photos!
I saw Doyle and David Ellefson at Rock n Roll Industries Magazine's booth and followed that up with Gus G (Ozzy Osbourne/Firewind), Kerry Kelli & Brad Gillis (Night Ranger), and Jared James Nichols, Teppei Taranashi & Dustin Kensrue (Thrice) back at Korg.
Marty Friedman was at Engl Amps and Mike Orlando (Adrenaline Mob) was at GHS Strings. One of my highlights Friday was photographing Billy Bob Thornton and his band The Boxmasters then getting to go into the Korg performance room and shoot that as well!

As I was leaving to get to Mike and head over to NAMMJam, I ran into Tommy Thayer signing some autographs for fans in the middle of the walkway.