The annual winter NAMM Show has taken place in Anaheim, California. Featuring a host of names from across the music world from manufacturers to dealers to some of the most recognisable faces in entertainment, the 2018 event took place from 24th - 28th January 2018.
Spread across the last week in January, musicians, producers, engineers, dealers, promoters, and just about anyone with even a passing connection to the music world gathered at Anaheim's impossibly enourmous Convention Centre to attend what is the largest music expo of its kind in the world.
Kicking off proper on Thursday 25th January, as well as the myriad (over 10,000) exhibitors sharing their latest products - from the leaders of the guitar world like Fender and Ibanez, to the noise makers in drums like Paiste and Pearl - the likes of Sixx:A.M's DJ Ashba, wonder kid Thomas McRocklin, and former Megadeth string-bender Chris Poland were in attendance to give demonstrations and endorse products by Morley Pedals, Fishman amps, and Stone Tone products, respectively.
Click HERE to see Chris Poland in action with Stone Tone at NAMM 2018.
The star attraction on day one however, was Flavor Flav, who gave a one hour insight into his career in an intimate chat hosted by JBL electronics. An engaging and charismatic character, the Public Enemy MC shared stories about his life, from his unlikely time as a school bus driver, to fronting one of the most influential bands of a generation. As well as telling eonmusic that his band's 1991 run of dates with Anthrax was "the most fun I've ever had on tour", the former William Jonathan Drayton Jr admitted to being a big fan of Prophets of Rage, the super group featuring musical partner Chuck D.
Friday (26th January) saw more big names in attendance, from Alter Bridge's Mark Tremonti to Iron Maiden's Nicko McBrain, whose 'The Book Of Souls' kit was on display at the Sonor booth throughout the weekend. Elsewhere, iconic Jeff Beck and Michael Jackson player Jennifer Batten, and Lynch Mob / Dokken man George Lynch took to the stage to play, and answer questions in close confines for intimately gathered audiences.
Saturday (27th January) saw yet more icons mingle across the centre's three floors and twenty-plus hangar-sized rooms, with Michael Anthony (Chickenfoot / Van Halen) and Nuno Bettoncourt (Extreme) taking centre stage for a series of talks and signings at Peavy and KMC Music. Ernie Ball strings meanwhile, presented not one, but two former Megadeth players with a joint signing by Chris Poland and later-day soloist Chris Broderick, who shared the booth and time with lauded player Tony MacAlpine.
Click HERE for eonmusic's chat with Chris Broderick.
While Alice Cooper stopped to pose for pictures with fans at Shure's booth at a far wing of the labyrinthine centre, Framus and Warwick pulled off the most impressive line-up of the weekend, with a host of celebrity endorsees joining up for a meet and greet with fans, also on Saturday. Pulling together members of Alice In Chains (Willian DuVall and Mike Inez) , Bon Jovi (Phil X), Trivium (Paolo Gregoletto), Pantera (Rex Brown), and System of a Down (Shavarsh Odadjian) along with Bootsy Collins, Devin Townsend and others, it was a super-grouping not to be missed.
Click HERE to read our interview with Paolo Gregoletto.
With events continuing well into the evening, NAMM had something for everyone. As well as the officially endorsed She Rocks awards and the NAMM TEC awards which featured a special performance by Jackson Browne, peripheral shows included L.A. Guns, Extreme and Metal Allegiance who took over Anaheim's House Of Blues venue. There was also time to remember the fallen, with Santa Ana's Bonzo Bash and Randy Rhoads Remembered celebrating the music of the late Led Zeppelin and Ozzy Osbourne players.
Founded in 1901, NAMM stands for the 'National Association of Music Merchants'. Since its inception, NAMM has evolved from a national retail association into an international association whose members now include commercial companies, distributors, affiliates and manufacturers.
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