January 28, 2013

NAMM, NAMM 2013, NAMM2013, Anaheim, Anaheim Convention Center
The entrance to NAMM 2013 at the Anaheim Convention Center.
This past weekend at NAMM 2013 was incredible to say the least.  Even though it was my first NAMM appearance, I felt very much at home and I am already counting down the days until next year. Vendors, artists, and media alike were very friendly and welcoming.  Booths were filled with gear, information, demonstrations, and famous rock stars. New products were unveiled, press kits were easily to obtain, and I was even provided with samples of certain products to review.

Steven Fies, Jimmy DeGrasso, NAMM, NAMM 2013, NAMM2013, Megadeth, Suicidal Tendencies
Me with Jimmy Degrasso in the DW drum booth at NAMM 2013
Needless to say, it was an honor and a privilege to attend this year as a press guy.  Everyone was in good spirits and I managed to absorb a ton of knowledge (and press/media kits).  However, NAMM is the type of place that makes you realize just how much you don’t know, and how much more research one must undertake to get a full handle on everything.  I was there for two of the four days this year, and I don’t even think four days would be enough to take everything in.  There are simply too many products and demonstrations taking place in a very short amount of time.

That said, from what I did manage to take in, I want to give you my low-down on three key topics: Most Interesting New Gear, Most Impressive Vendor Booth, and Most Unexpected Innovation.

1) Most Interesting New Gear: TRU TUNER
I am a guitarist, but surprisingly the most interesting new gear I saw at NAMM this year was the Tru Tuner Drum Tuner.  This thing improves workflow by 100% for most drummers and allows them to tighten all of their lugs at once, ensuring equal amounts of screw turns and thus even tuning around all lugs.  More information can be found on their website and in this YouTube video, plus you can reference my video below to see how it works.

(By the way -- this suspended drum mic was
my 2nd runner up for "Most Interesting")

2) Most Impressive Vendor Booth: TC HELICON
TC Helicon didn’t have the biggest booth, but they had an impressive booth nonetheless.  First and foremost, they had Uriah Duffy and Eric Barnett of Points North putting on an incredible show on both the days I attended the show.  This alone was a great move and drew large crowds in each instance of playing, including the video I shot below.  Second, they had informative video screens with solid information along with some cool new products to show off.  Finally, Tom Lang was there – the dude in most of their product demo videos you have probably seen before on the TC Helicon website.  Cool!

Steven Fies, Eric Barnett, Points North, NAMM, NAMM 2013, NAMM2013, Points North Band, Lead Guitar, Guitarist, Music
Me with Eric Barnett of Points North at NAMM 2013.


This thing was just plain rad.  I am not sure why this would be so unexpected, but for me it was a completely eye-opening experience.  I have a close friend who DJ’s a lot, and specifically within the realm of Dubstep this thing opens up a ton of cool possibilities.  It triggers changes in MIDI and effects in your DAW based on movements of your hand, so you can do bass warbles, panning, and all sorts of other stuff.  Check out the demo video below from the Source Audio booth at NAMM to see what I’m buzzing about.

PRS, PRS Guitars, Guitars, Electric Guitar, Electric Guitars, PRS Electric Guitar, PRS Electric Guitars, NAMM, NAMM 2013, NAMM2013
Rows of PRS Guitars at NAMM 2013.
Once I process all of my photos, I will write a follow-up post to discuss a few other memorable moments from NAMM 2013 and provide a link to all said photos.  In the meantime, check out my YouTube channel to see some brief clips from the show.  Thank you and have a great week!


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