It’s Monday morning and I’m on a plane from LA back to NYC. The 2007 NAMM show was incredible.
Before I get into the dynamics of the show, I’d like to share with you about my trip out to L.A.
The night before my flight I got about an hour of sleep, due to a digestive adventure. I left the house on Thursday, at 5:30 am in balmy 12-degree weather, to pick up my Guitar Jam Daily cohort, Nick Friese. We get to JFK airport and board our plane. Right away it is apparent that our flight is packed with NAMM attendees due to the all the long hair and guitar cases. I have the window seat and next to me is a gentleman who builds custom motorcycles for a living. He is a large man with a strong odiferous vibe. Seated to his right in the aisle seat is a somewhat famous rocker who has obviously been through the mill. He makes Keith Richards look like a J. Crew model. Anyhow, it was apparent he was partying the night before and was not done yet. Early into the flight he threw back a few Bloody Marys and was soon down for the count. So basically I was penned in my seat. I decided that my only option to brave the next six hours was to go into a temporary cocoon state. Not one of my finer moments.
Finally, we arrive at Long Beach airport, get our rent-a-car and head to see day one of the show. As soon as we get to the show we grab a NAMM guidebook and starting planning out which of the 1500 exhibits we will attempt to visit. Nick and I both have a lot of ground to cover so we decide to split up. My first stop is to see my friend Mitch Colby at the Vox/Marshall booth. We do some catching up and he shows me all their new cool products. After visiting a few more booths, day one is coming to a close. Nick and I head out to dinner and discuss our Friday game plan. We get to the show around 11:00 am for day two and the fun starts right away. Throughout the day I see some amazing gear and hear some of the world’s most prolific musicians. I stop by the Salwender International booth to see my friend Uwe and check out the display of Diezel guitar amps, Glockenklang bass amps, Vigier guitars and more. My favorite visual is the Diezel Herbert head and matching 4 x 12 cab in white tolex.
I swing by VHT to check in with Stevie and Victoria Amp Co. to see Mark. Both of those guys have done a fabulous job in building up their respective amp companies.
That evening I go out to dinner with Uwe and Trip Wamsley, who represents the Glockenklang bass amp sales and a great is a bassist. After dinner, we stop by a local high-end music store, Tone Merchants, to hear guitarist J.M.R. He is a fantastic talent that happens to also be doing some of the Eventide booth demos at the show. Unfortunately, we had to leave early and missed Guthrie Govan.
Saturday, day three, is by far the most crowded day. There are separate areas away from the booth that feature live music. There, I had the privilege of hearing greats like Willy Porter, Greg Koch, Nils Lofgrin, Jeff Kolman, Guthrie Govan, and many others throughout the day. I also carve out a couple of hours to do my proaudio perusing. I stop by Chandler Ltd. and see my buddy Wade Goeke. He shows me the new Germanium EQ and a few other goodies. Wade is an absolute genius and I love his products. For recording guitar and other tracks, Chandler gear is beyond great.
After the show it’s off to a quick dinner and then back to Tone Merchants again to see some more live music. Tone Merchants has a store front with a lot of high-end gear and a stage with seating for live acts. Playing that night were Trip Wamsley, Christophe Godin, Ed Degenaro, and others. Some really kickin’ music I might add. After that Nick and I head up to The Baked Potato to catch the 11:30 pm show of Mike Landau with The Jazz Ministry. We get back to the hotel at 3:00 am to catch a little sleep. It’s Sunday morning and it feels like I’ve been hit by a truck. Even though I am suffering from serious sleep deprivation, I don’t really care because I am having so much fun.
Day four is known as “Tumbleweed Day,” due to the fact that there are far less people roaming around. I do my final rounds, check out some more gear, say goodbye to my friends and depart the show. I head up to Van Nuys to visit Jim at Tyler Guitars. He shows me around and we yuck it up for about an hour, talking about Guitar Jam Daily and an upcoming interview that I will be doing with him – stay tuned for that! His shop is truly amazing and he produces some of the world’s best electric guitars. If you have played one you know what I mean. After Jim’s, I stop by an old friend’s house to watch a little football and catch up. Then it’s back to Anaheim for my final NAMM dinner with Nick. At dinner we meet some new friends from Pavel Musical Instruments. Really great people.
So, as I sit here on my return flight back to NYC I realize that I can’t even begin to describe what an incredible experience NAMM 2007 is … actually I think I just did! The gear and the eye-candy are wonderful, but the best parts are seeing all the live music and checking in with old friends. Even though I am a bit sad that the 2007 NAMM show is over, I am happy that the two seats next to me are not occupied.
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Sporting custom artwork etched onto the covers, the Railhammer Billy Corgan Z-One Humcutters are designed to offer a fat midrange and a smooth top end.
Billy Corgan was looking for something for heavier Smashing Pumpkins songs, so Joe Naylor designed the Railhammer Billy Corgan Z-One pickup. Sporting custom artwork etched onto the covers, the Railhammer Billy Corgan Z-One Humcutters have a fat midrange and a smooth top end. This pickup combines the drive and sustain of a humbucker with the percussive attack and string clarity of a P90. Get beefy P90 tone plus amp-pummeling output with the Railhammer Billy Corgan Z-One.
Patented Railhammer Pickups take passive guitar pickups to a new level with rails under the wound strings lead to tighter lows, and poles under the plain strings offer fatter heights. With increased clarity, the passive pickup’s tone is never sterile.
Railhammer Billy Corgan Signature Z-One Pickup Demo
For more information, please visit railhammer.com.
Designed for utmost comfort and performance, the Vertigo Ultra Bass is Mono’s answer to those who seek the ultimate gigging experience.
Complete with a range of game-changing design features, such as the patent-pending attachable FREERIDE Wheel System, premium water-resistant and reflective materials, shockproof shell structure and improved ergonomic features, the Vertigo Ultra Bass takes gear protection to the next level.
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The Generation Collection of acoustic guitars features the exclusive Gibson Player Port designed to offer a unique and immersive sonic experience.
The G-Bird, the newest addition to the Generation Collection--represents the glorious legacy of the Gibson Hummingbird colliding with modern sonic enhancement through the Gibson Player Port to add a new dimension to the G-Bird sound. The Gibson Player Port allows players to hear more of themselves as the audience hears it. With a tone that is crisp and resonant, all of the Gibson Generation Collection acoustics are designed to be comfortable to hold and play for long periods of time. All Generation Collection guitars feature the Gibson Player Port, slim, lightweight bodies, a flatter fingerboard radius, Walnut back and sides, Sitka spruce tops, and a stunning Natural finish. Additionally, the new G-Bird, and the G-200 and G-Writer are equipped with LR Baggs™ Element Bronze pickup systems which amplify deep bass and crystal-clear highs.
The G-Bird represents the glorious legacy of the Gibson Hummingbird with modern sonic enhancement through the Gibson Player Port adding a new dimension to the G-Bird’s sound. The G-Bird features a stunning solid Sitka spruce top and solid walnut back and sides for the ultimate in crisp, resonant tone. This square-shoulder dreadnought delivers all the rich low end and well-balanced mids and highs the original Hummingbird is famous for. The TUSQ nut and saddle, along with chrome Grover Mini Rotomatic tuners, deliver solid tuning stability so you can spend more time playing instead of tuning. The utile neck, with its easy-playing Advanced Response neck profile, is so comfortable you won’t want to put it down. The G-Bird also comes equipped with an LR Baggs Element Bronze pickup system, so it will always sound as good to your audience as it does to you. The G-Bird also comes equipped with an LR Baggs™ Element Bronze pickup system, so it will always sound as good to your audience as it does to you. The G-Bird is available in Natural finish. A gig bag is included.
Modeled after Gibson’s pioneering small-body parlor acoustic guitars from the 1930’s, the G-00 is a top choice for blues and fingerstyle guitar performances. Despite its more compact size, the G-00 achieves a full, balanced sound. The G-00 fills any room with rich tones-which players can hear like never before, with the exclusive Gibson Player Port. Like all models in the Gibson Generation Collection, the G-00 is handcrafted in Bozeman, Montana, by the same highly--skilled craftspeople who make all Gibson acoustic guitars. The G-00 features a beautiful solid Sitka spruce top and solid Walnut back and sides for tone that sounds crisp and resonant. The slightly thinner G-00 parlor-sized body is exceptionally comfortable to hold and play. The TUSQ nut and saddle along with the Grover Mini Rotomatic tuners, deliver solid tuning stability so you can spend more time playing instead of tuning, and the utile neck with its easy-playing neck profile is so comfortable you won’t want to put it down. The G-00 is available in Natural finish. A gig bag is included.
The G-45, a round-shouldered jumbo, adds the Gibson Player Port to its famous “Workhorse” J-45 style body, which is Gibson’s best-selling acoustic guitar of all time. On the G-45, players can now hear more clearly than ever how this beloved guitar responds to every style and technique of playing. Powerful one moment and soft the next, the G-45 delivers all sounds with incredible dynamic range in an elegant, medium body size. The G-45 is part of the Gibson Generation Collection and like all models in this collection, it is handcrafted in Bozeman, MT, by the same highly skilled craftspeople who make all Gibson acoustics. It features a solid Sitka spruce top and solid Walnut back and sides for tone that sounds crisp and resonant. The G-45 features a slightly thinner round shoulder body is exceptionally comfortable to hold and play. The TUSQ nut and saddle, along with the Grover Mini Rotomatic tuners deliver solid tuning stability, so you can spend more time playing instead of tuning, and the utile neck with its easy-playing neck profile is so comfortable you won’t want to put it down. The G-45 is available in Natural finish. A gig bag is included.
Gibson’s impressive range of square-shouldered guitars have become an expressive standard for rock, pop, folk, and country artists. The G-Writer is known for its wide range of sounds, from gutsy and loud, to soft and sweet; they are superb for all styles and shine, whether strumming chords or fingering intricate solos. The G-Writer comes ready for the stage or studio with an LR Baggs Element Bronze pickup system and the ear-opening Gibson Player Port. The G-Writer is part of the Gibson Generation Collection and like all models in this collection, it is handcrafted in Bozeman, MT, by the same highly skilled craftspeople who make all Gibson acoustics. It features a solid Sitka spruce top and solid Walnut back and sides for tone that sounds crisp and resonant. The G-Writer features a slightly thinner cutaway body, is more comfortable to play and provides effortless access to the upper frets. The TUSQ nut and saddle, along with the Grover Mini Rotomatic tuners deliver solid tuning stability, so you can spend more time playing instead of tuning, and the utile neck with its easy-playing neck profile is so comfortable you won’t want to put it down. The G-Writer is available in Natural finish. A gig bag is also included.
Gibson built its first “Super Jumbo” SJ-200 as a custom order for country and western singer and film star Ray Whitley, who desired a big, loud, and deep flat-top over which to croon. The SJ-200 quickly became a staple of cowboy singers and horseback troubadours, and then country music, 60’s folk stars, and onto every acoustic guitar genre that has followed. Ray would be proud to hear the booming sound from the Gibson Player Port on the new G-200, which comes ready for the stage or studio with a LR Baggs Element Bronze pickup system. Like all models in the Gibson Generation Collection, the G-200 is handcrafted in Bozeman, MT, by the same highly--skilled craftspeople who make all Gibson acoustics. The G-200 features a beautiful solid Sitka spruce top and solid Walnut back and sides for tone that sounds crisp and resonant. The slightly thinner G-200 cutaway jumbo body is exceptionally comfortable to hold and provides excellent access to the upper frets. The TUSQ nut and saddle, along with the Grover Mini Rotomatic tuners, deliver solid tuning stability so you can spend more time playing instead of tuning, and the utile neck with its easy-playing neck profile is so comfortable you won’t want to put it down. The G-200 is available in Natural finish. A gig bag is also included.
G-Bird | Generation Collection
For more information, please visit gibson.com.