You know the drill. Every year, there’s a summer and a winter NAMM convention where manufacturers from across the globe display their latest mouth-watering goodies to gear fanatics from all around the world. (Don’t you just love the multinational majesty of product-to-user synergies?) This January, the GP staff made its annual trip to Anaheim, California, to absorb—and report on—the onslaught of Winter NAMM’s 2005 product releases.
Now, this is a blissful gig if you love musical tools and toys, but it’s never an easy job, because there are (to steal a phrase from Joni Mitchell) miles of aisles of booths hawking tons of new stuff. And, of course, the editors simply can’t resist playing with every piece of gear that strikes a fancy or piques some interest. Needless to say, any chance of an efficient, militaristic campaign to precisely catalog the entire show is compromised by the sickness known as gear lust. Given all the distractions, I’m constantly surprised that the gang brings anything back, but, once again, the staff has managed to deliver a comprehensive report on the products you’ll soon see reviewed and discussed in these pages throughout the year. (Go team!) Please see Out Now! on page 50 for a list of the editors’ fave finds and new releases. On the pages of this Industry Insider feature, we’ve assembled a rough-and-ready photo essay of some of the show’s highlights. Finally, in the June issue of GP, we’ll publish Terry Buddingh’s exclusive report on the geniuses and madmen who populate the NAMM basement (affectionately called the “Mad Scientist Hall”) reserved for small, new, and emerging product manufacturers and distributors.