Summer NAMM LogoSweetwater Sound Summer NAMM Report

by David Stewart - Director of Creative Marketing

Wow! Just when we thought it was safe to hop in the van and start driving again, what happens? We end up in Nashville at another summer NAMM show. This year there were no glamorous helicopters or Lear jets to get us to the show as in the past; just a plodding trip in Chuck's luxurious van. Trips that Sweetwater's top management takes together are always interesting. Even when we try to talk about something other than work we still end up back at the same place - work, and how we can better serve our customers. Several ideas were taken from their embryonic stages to practical implementation in the seven-hour drive. You'll hear more about those in the coming months.

Despite this writer's disdain for heat and the prevailing country music everywhere, Nashville is a very enjoyable town. NAMM shows always have a very festive mood (lets face it, musicians DO know how to party) and this one was no exception, with great bands playing in bars up and down every major street and great concerts every night. But in the end, fatigue (partly due to information overload) always wins at the show. The phrase, "My dawgs are barkin'" has never been more appropriate.

The theme of this year's show was once again guitars, with a notable presence of groove or DJ oriented equipment and digital peripheral equipment. The most amazing performance at the show (besides David Bryce's enthusiasm at Alesis) was from Bill Dickens at the Cort booth playing one of his signature 7-string basses. The notes per second count was off the scale, making Mark King (of Level 42) sound like he was in that episode of Start Trek where aliens slowed the crew down so much they weren't even moving.

In spite of walking what seemed like 50 miles per day and listening to every sales pitch known to man, I'm sure we missed things. This report is not meant to be the definitive all-inclusive text on the matter. It is what we thought was interesting and would be relevant to our readers. Before you enter remember this: Prices (where available), model names, release dates, colors, sizes, power ratings, specs, weights, specific gravities, knob per dollar ratios, chemical compositions, cool guy factors, and densities are all subject to change at the whim of any number of manufacturing and distributing entities.

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