Guitar Center to launch its first-ever Musician's Expo

March 12, 2013
Guitar Center is slated to launch their first-ever musical takeover of the Long Beach Convention Center, giving the public an unprecedented chance to preview the latest products from the world's top music manufacturers on Saturday, April 6, 2013. The Musician's Expo expands upon the brand's deep commitment to helping people make music by launching a whole day devoted to music makers and music fans in Southern California.

Inspired by the groundbreaking new products and impressive expertise of the manufacturer representatives on-hand at January's annual National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Tradeshow, Guitar Center set off to re-create the experience for their customers this spring. Through their long-standing vendor relationships and placement amongst the diverse and ever-growing Southern California music scene, the retailer has gathered more than 60 of the world's top music instrument and accessory brands, ranging from Martin and Fender, to Casio, Roland, DW, Bose, Pioneer and more, to bring the NAMM experience to the upcoming Musician's Expo.

Guitar Center's Musician's Expo gives the public a sneak-peek at the best of next season's music gear from the music instrument industry's leading manufacturers, along with artist workshops, group lessons, panel discussions and more, all at one location. On Saturday, April 6 attendees will be able to get a first glimpse while testing an array of musical instruments and accessories not-yet-available in stores and only previously seen by industry-insiders and retail buyers at the recent NAMM tradeshow.  Just as in Guitar Center retail store locations, attendees of Guitar Center Musician's Expo will be encouraged to pick up and play the display items, interact with the new equipment and connect with the expert representatives at each brand booth.

"At Guitar Center we have strived to build strong relationships within the industry and with our customers, and we couldn't be more excited to for this opportunity to bring them all together under one roof," says Jeff Hiller, VP of Brand Management at Guitar Center.  "Guitar Center is committed to helping people make music and we are continuing to raise the bar for our customers by developing programs and events like the Guitar Center Musician's Expo."

The Musician's Expo will also feature the exclusive Guitar Center Legends Collection showcasing three legendary guitars representing pivotal moments in rock and roll history.  Expo-attendees will get a first-hand look two authentic Eric Clapton iconic guitars including his famous "Blackie" Fender Stratocaster guitar which defined the Clapton sound for most of the '70s and early '80s, as well as Clapton's vibrant red Gibson ES-335 that he played with The Yardbirds, Cream, John Mayall's Bluesbreakers, Blind Faith, and throughout his solo career. The Guitar Center Legends Collection will also showcase the only guitar from Stevie Ray Vaughan's estate to become publicly available, the personalized "Lenny" Fender Stratocaster guitar, named for the late-musician's wife Lenora.  All three guitars were purchased by Guitar Center through special Christies auctions benefiting Eric Clapton's Crossroads Centre Foundation, "Blackie," "ES-335" and "Lenny" for $959,500, $847,500 and $623,500 respectively.

Date: Saturday, April 6, 2013
Time: 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Long Beach Convention Center
300 E Ocean Blvd.
Long Beach, CA 90802

Available at all Southern California stores for $5 pre-sale starting Tuesday, March 19 and on event-date at the Long Beach Convention Center for $10


11:00 a.m. – Artist Workshop with jazz drummer Chad Wackerman (Bill Watrous Band, Frank Zappa), featuring influential jazz-fusion artist Allan Holdsworth and renowned electric bass player and Yellowjackets founder, Jimmy Haslip (Kiss, Anita Baker)
Noon – Artist Workshop with Mix Master Mike, renowned DJ whose worked with musicians from Dr. Dre to Travis Barker
1:00 p.m. – Artist Workshop with Derek Sherinian, American keyboardist who has toured and recorded for Alice Cooper, Billy Idol, Kiss and more
2:00 p.m. – Artist Workshop with Jane's Addiction drummer Stephen Perkins, featuring fretless bass guitarist Tony Franklin (Jimmy Page, Kate Bush) and Grammy-winning upright bass player Rob Wasserman (Lou Reed, Elvis Costello)
3:00 p.m. – DJ Workshop with DJ Qbert, winner of America's Best DJ 2010, Qbert started DJing in FM20 with Mix Master Mike and DJ Apollo in 1990
4:00 p.m. – Artist Workshop hosted by drummer Gil Sharone (Dillinger Escape Plan, +44) and joined by musicians Chino Marion, Todd Wilkinson, and Chuck Doom
MUSICIAN'S EXPO GROUP CLINICS – free with admission + instruments and equipment provided:

Free Recording Made Easy classes hosted by AVID featuring Pro Tools 9
Free Group Guitar Lessons
Free Group Ukulele lessons
THE SESSIONS – free with expo admission and registration at

An insightful and educational music industry panel discussion dedicated to empowering musicians and giving artists the skills they need to achieve their goals music business –

Event attendees and fans can enter to win Guitar Center's $4,500 Guitar Center Dream Shopping Spree
Guitar Center's Music Market Place a small Guitar Center pop-up shop at the Musician's Expo.
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