• Gibson Announces Scholarship Program

    Gibson Announces Scholarship Program

    Gibson announce its first-ever, annual music scholarship program. For the evergreen Gibson Gives Scholarship ProgramGibson–through its philanthropic arm Gibson Gives–will award 15+ music scholarships this year comprised of cash grants, as well as instruments and gear, allowing meaningful giving directly to high school seniors as they prepare to navigate their post grad education and careers. Gibson Gives will partner with Save The Music Foundation for 10 of 15 scholarships this year to help both musicians and prospective music students nationwide develop a career in the music industry.

    The new Gibson Gives Scholarship Program has launched with the Sister Rosetta Tharpe Scholarship–the first-ever music scholarship created in honor of the iconic and incomparable Godmother of Rock ‘n’ Roll, Sister Rosetta Tharpe. The Sister Rosetta Tharpe Scholarship has been awarded to Sierra Guilmartin, a senior at Philadelphia High School for Girls who plans to pursue music at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia in the Fall. The scholarship, created through support by the Fund for the School District of Philadelphia, marks the first award from Gibson Gives directly to students in support of their post-secondary pursuits in music. Save The Music Foundation has partnered with the School District of Philadelphia since 1999, supporting expanded student access to music education through instrument donationsprofessional development for teachers, and Music Industry Masterclasses for students interested in exploring careers in music and entertainment. Instrument donations have included general music instruments, band and string instruments, digital keyboards, and recording and production equipment through the J Dilla Music Tech Grant, which launched at South Philadelphia High School in 2018.

    The Gibson Gives Scholarship Program is available to students with a guitar interest, who are planning to pursue music of some form in college. Each recipient will receive one guitar, as well as a $5,000 cash grant to assist in their ​college funding. The Gibson Gives and Save The Music Scholarships alone will result in $75,000.00+ (10 grants of 5,000k, and 10 Gibson guitars) in giving to young musicians. The scholarships will be created in both current and legacy artist’s names to celebrate their cultural impact across multiple genres of music; expect more to be announced soon.

    “The launch of our new scholarship program in partnership with Save The Music allows us to directly impact the lives of young musicians” says Dendy Jarrett, Executive Director, Gibson Gives. “For our first scholarship, we’re proud to be partnering with Save The Music to both pay tribute to the godmother of Rock ’n’ Roll, the great Sister Rosetta Tharpe and to support the developing careers of young musicians and creators!”

    “I love that Gibson has taken inspiration from a trailblazing musician like Sister Rosetta Tharpe –and channeled it into a meaningful new opportunity for young musicians” says Henry Donahue, Executive Director of Save The Music. “We’re very grateful at Save The Music to Gibson Gives and our partners at the Public Schools of Philadelphia for shining a light on both Sister Rosetta Tharpe and these students. We can’t wait to see and hear what these young creatives come up with next on their life journeys.”

  • Gibson Names Senior Director of Cultural Influence

    Gibson Names Senior Director of Cultural Influence

    Gibson named Erica Krusen to the role of senior director, Cultural Influence at Gibson Brands.

    At Gibson Brands, Cultural Influence is the driving force creating emotional connections with music lovers worldwide and generating forever fans.

    Through powerful storytellingtargeted partnerships, high-impact activations, and a global multi-media networkGibson’s Cultural Influence team takes the brand to audiences on the worldwide stage.

    “I am so pleased to announce that Erica Krusen has joined our Cultural Influence team as Senior Director in our hometown of Nashville, Music City USA” says Elizabeth Heidt, Global VP of Cultural Influence. “I am thrilled to have Erica to lead our initiatives from Nashville and join our family with her incredible talents.” 

    “I am honored to welcome Erica to the Gibson team. We have been working together for many years, establishing a strong partnership with MusiCares” says Cesar Gueikian, Brand President, Gibson Brands. “I have seen Erica in action working with and supporting, musicians globally, earning their trust and building relationships. Erica is a seasoned executive in music who will be instrumental in the evolution of Cultural Influence globally including our Gibson Gives fundraising efforts.”

    “Erica has been instrumental in helping artists and their families, mine especially, find their footing through so many avenues of life,” says singer-songwriter-actress, Elle King. “The work she has done through MusiCares is unforgettable and I’m so glad she will be joining the Gibson Team only furthering her stamp on our community and pushing her outreach even deeper through music, connection, love, and understanding what we go through in this life!”

    “Erica knows how to make it easy for artists to get the vital help they need,” adds Wes Schultz of Lumineers. “Through MusiCares she has changed so many lives for the better, and I’m excited to see all that she will bring to Gibson.”

    “I am humbled and excited to join the iconic Gibson Brands, under this amazing leadership team to make a meaningful impact in the world of music,” says Krusen. “I look forward to supporting the global music community through the Gibson Gives initiatives and I am deeply invested in the mission, and success of this organization.”

    Erica has been an active member of the Gibson Gives Advisory Circle since its inception and instrumental in the Gibson Brands partnership with The Recording Academy/MusiCares for over a decade. Erica joins Gibson’s Cultural Influence team with 15 years of experience as Managing Director at MusiCares, the charitable partner of The Recording Academy, aka GRAMMY’s. Through her work with MusiCaresErica is a renowned advocate for health and wellness in the music and entertainment community since she joined the MusiCares Foundation as a practicing licensed therapist.

    At MusiCares, Erica, was responsible for developing, implementing, and overseeing MusiCares’ programs and services nationally. Under her leadership, MusiCares succeeded in substantially increasing their programs and services from 1100 clients and $1,400,000 distributed in 2007 to over 38,000 clients and more than $28 million dollars distributed during the COVID pandemic. Ten years ago, Erica was instrumental in launching MusiCares’ first preventative health care event. Since then, the program has expanded to over 500 annual events nationwide that address medical issues, dental and hearing health, emotional health, addiction recovery services, and educational topics of interest to music people.

  • Guitar Center Opens California Store

    Guitar Center Opens California Store

    Guitar Center opened a 9,000-square-foot facility in Santa Maria, Calif., (443 East Betteravia Road, Santa Maria, CA 93454). The store offers an expansive set of services and gear to serve the music needs of the Santa Maria community. The grand opening took place on June 23. The opening of the Santa Maria store marks Guitar Center’s third store grand opening in 2022 and represents part of the company’s long-term growth strategy. 

    The new Santa Maria store features modern showrooms equipped with the latest products for musicians — from guitars, amplifiers, percussion instruments and keyboards to live sound, DJ, lighting and recording equipment. In-store services include: 

    • Guitar Center Lessons, a convenient and affordable music education experience for players of all ages and skill levels, offering students the opportunity to learn to play the music they love
    • Guitar Center Repairs, an on-site maintenance and repairs service
    • Guitar Center Rentals, providing easy rentals of instruments and other gear
    • Hands-on DJ Experience, where shoppers can try their hand at modern DJ techniques using the latest gear 

    Santa Maria shoppers are also able to enjoy Guitar Center’s multi-channel “endless aisle,” which gives customers the ability to combine in-store, online and phone options to purchase music equipment from anywhere. 

    Wayne Colwell, Executive Vice President of Stores at Guitar Center, stated, “We feel that our new location in Santa Maria is ideally located to serve and complement the already rich atmosphere of musicianship in California’s Central Coast region. We’re excited about the opportunity to create an immersive in-store experience that our customers will appreciate as we support them in their musical journey and help them to find their sound.” 

  • Cordoba Names Sales Manager

    Cordoba Names Sales Manager

    Cordoba Music Group, which offers brands such as Cordoba Guitars and Guild Guitars, is excited to announce that long-time industry veteran, Heiko Starke, has accepted the position of sales manager for its European direct operations. This territory includes Germany, Austria, Benelux, and Spain. Effective immediately, Heiko will be taking over all sales related operations from current European Business Manager Ralf Benninghaus-Fliedner, who will continue to work with CMG management in areas of strategy and brand development.

    Heiko Starke comes to CMG with over 28 years of experience in the musical instrument industry, many of them in leading positions at Fender Musical Instruments GmbH and Musik Meyer GmbH.

    “We are excited to have Heiko who is extremely self-motivated, and an internationally experienced sales professional join the CMG team and look forward to continued success with him leading the charge,” says Ralf Benninghaus-Fliedner.

  • Percussion Marketing Council Gathers at The NAMM Show

    Percussion Marketing Council Gathers at The NAMM Show

    The Percussion Marketing Council (PMC) held a PlayDrums.com open house during the NAMM Show at the Anaheim Hilton on Friday, June 3. It was the first official in-person PMC gathering of the full board, members, and potential members in more than two years.

    This gathering provided a space for those in the drum industry to become better acquainted with other drum industry colleagues and learn more about the PMC and its initiatives.

    This year’s event honored former PMC Executive Director Karl Dustman, who stepped down last spring, and long-time executive board member David Jewell, who retired from Yamaha Corporation of America in January.

    “Karl devoted over 19 years to steering the PMC to make it what it is today,” said current PMC Executive Director Antoinette Follett. “David served on our executive board for 12 years and worked to create many of the PlayDrums.com programs that help the PMC promote drumming and percussion. Both are tireless music advocates.”

    “I became Executive Director during the uncertainty of the challenging pandemic years when many of the hands-on, in-school PMC drum programs were abruptly postponed and canceled. We took this unique opportunity to re-invigorate our education and promotional programs,” said Follett. “We’re connecting our programs and facilitators in wider geographic areas and with more diverse populations. This momentum continues through the support and participation of our member organizations.”

    PMC’s annual initiatives include Experience Drumming! programs across the country, as well as monthly giveaways and the special International Drum Month Lesson with a Master promotion in May.

  • West Music, Griggs Music to Merge

    West Music, Griggs Music to Merge

    West Music announced it will merge with Griggs Music, effective July 1. The two family-owned music stores with two-hundred years of combined experience will join together, expanding their services to musicians throughout the greater Quad Cities, Iowa, and surrounding areas.

    Their combined resources will provide greater access to top-quality products, accessories, print music, lessons, and instrument repair. Customers will continue to work with the same great people they have come to count on in the past. With the combined talent from both companies, customers will continue to receive the extraordinary service they are accustomed to.

    Both Quad Cities locations will continue to operate – Griggs Music, 3849 Brady Street, Davenport, IA, and the West Music location, 4305 44th Ave, Moline, IL.  Both locations will be prepared to service customer’s past and current needs.

    “After an incredible 47-year career with Griggs Music, it’s time to move on to a new chapter of my life. It has been my honor and privilege to have spent my entire career with one company and to have been CEO for the last 24 years”, says Steve Judge, CEO Griggs Music. Judge continued, “West Music has a similar rich tradition and culture and my respect for their organization has only grown over the years. I have interacted with 3 generations of owners at both Griggs Music and West Music and feel our merger will result in an even stronger organization committed to its staff and our music families. I look forward to working with West Music to ensure we continue the tradition of being the best locally-owned instrumental music store.”

    Robin Walenta, West Music CEO shares Judge’s sentiment. “I have known Steve Judge my entire professional career. We grew up in the music business together. I have a great deal of respect for him and the entire Griggs Music team and am very excited to work closely with them to expand our reach in creating more life-long music makers in the area. What a great business we are in, enriching people’s lives through the joy of making music.” 

    Griggs Music, established in 1903 by Arthur P. Griggs, has over a century of experience in the Davenport community. Griggs Music’s history goes back well over a century and includes all of the ups and downs of the Roaring 20s, the Great Depression, two world wars, vast changes in technology and musical tastes, and much more. Throughout all of this, however, the Griggs name has remained synonymous with music and excellence in musical instrument sales in Eastern Iowa and Northwest Illinois.

    Established in 1941, West Music Company’s continued growth and success has, as its foundation, a rich history of providing quality service and opportunities for people of all ages and abilities to Play now, Play for life.

    West Music has several regional locations in eastern Iowa and western Illinois providing instrument and print music sales, repair, lessons, and music therapy services. The company also serves customers nationally, and even internationally, though its multiple e-commerce websites and catalog departments.

  • Powell Named Guitar Center VP of Real Estate

    Powell Named Guitar Center VP of Real Estate

    Guitar Center named Angelia Powell as vice president of real estate. In her new role, Powell will be responsible for the leadership and strategy driving store development and growth throughout the organization. She will focus on the ongoing analysis, selection and negotiation of new and current store sites, relocation, replacement expansion, store initiatives, and oversight over the company’s corporate real estate. Powell will report to Tim Martin, Guitar Center Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer.

    Powell has over 30 years of experience in the retail real estate, design, and construction industry, working with companies like The Limited, Eddie Bauer, The Disney Store, Lululemon Athletica, Williams-Sonoma, and Comcast/Xfinity. Most recently, she was the Vice President of Development and Construction for Convene, a hospitality company in New York City. She has also worked on the landlord side of the business, leasing existing and new ground-up development projects.

    “As Guitar Center continues to grow, the real estate aspect of our business is crucial,” said Tim Martin, Guitar Center Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. “Angie is uniquely positioned to support our growth initiatives with an eye upon the issues surrounding site selection, facility footprint, projected financials and everything that goes into consideration in terms of our physical stores. We welcome Angie and look forward to working closely with her.”

  • She Rocks Rocks Anaheim

    She Rocks Rocks Anaheim

    The 10th annual She Rocks Awards rocked The Ranch in Anaheim on June 2, to help kick off the NAMM Season!  Hosted by the Women’s International Music Network (the WiMN), the gala celebration featured a star-studded array of honorees that include GRAMMY® Award winners Dionne Warwick, who appeared virtually along with live appearances by Meredith Brooks, Carmen Vandenberg, MILCK, Yvette Young as well many other women from all corners of the music and audio industry.

    The evening included special performances by the honorees including Carmen Vandenberg, MILCK, Yvette Young, Sherri Chung.  Vocalists Heather Youmans and Laura Clapp joined Mindi Abair on sax, the Command Sisters and drummer Christina Torres who performed a medley of “That’s What Friends Are For,”and “I Say A LIttle Prayer,” as a tribute to Dionne Warwick. The evening concluded with a rousing performance of “Bitch” by Meredith Brooks featuring fellow honorees Carmen Vandenberg on lead guitar and MILCK joining in to duet with Brooks.

    The full list of 2022 honorees includes:

    ●   Dionne Warwick, Legend Award – Six-time GRAMMY® and Lifetime Achievement Award recipient, multi-platinum iconic singer, actress, television host, former UN Goodwill Ambassador and interior designer with her own WG Design Lab

    ●   Meredith Brooks, Trailblazer Award – singer-songwriter and guitarist celebrating the 25th anniversary of her single ”Bitch”

    ●   Carmen VandenbergBold Star Award – lead guitarist and one half of the GRAMMY®-nominated rock duo BONES UK

    ●   MILCK, Vision Award – singer/songwriter, leading advocate for women’s rights and celebrated role model within the music industry

    ●   Yvette Young, Inspire Award -guitarist and front-woman for the math rock band Covet

    ●   Kerry Fiero, Motivator Award – producer of the annual “Girl Power! Women Working in the Music Industry” Conference

    ●   EveAnna Manley, Mad Skills Award – president, Manley Laboratories aka “The Tube Chick”

    ●   Sherri Chung, Spirit Award – Award-winning film and TV composer and Governor of the Music Branch of the Television Academy

    ●   Leslie Gaston-Bird, Champion Award – mixer, sound editor, author and a champion of diversity in the audio industry

    ●   Lyndsey Parker, Dreaming Out Loud Award – Yahoo Entertainment Music Editor, SiriusXM host and author

    ●   Julie Robbins, Powerhouse Award – CEO of effects pedal manufacturer Earthquaker Devices

    ●   Myki AngelineWarrior Award – radio professional for Audacy and social media manager for the WiMN.

    Co-hosting the event were Katie Daryl (AXS TV host) and Mindi Abair, two-time GRAMMY® nominated saxophonist/vocalist, who stepped in for Lzzy Hale (Halestorm).  The opening performance by Canada’s own Platinum Award-winning singer/songwriter/guitarist Tenille Arts got the evening off to a stellar start.

    “It was so exciting to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the 2022 She Rocks Awards by honoring these fantastic female role models,” said the WiMN founder, Laura B. Whitmore. “The entire evening was packed with inspiring stories, performances and very special moments!”

  • NAMM Concludes Successful Show

    NAMM Concludes Successful Show

    After more than two years of absence, the leaders, innovators, experts, artists, and creators across the music products, pro audio and sound, and entertainment technology industry gathered for a rousing reunion at the global crossroads, The 2022 NAMM Show. Held June 3-5 in Anaheim, California, the three days welcomed old and new faces to reconnect, launch and discover new products, and galvanize the industry to continued success. 

    “Looking back to the 2020 NAMM Show, I don’t think anyone could have predicted just how transformative the start of this next decade would be,” said Joe Lamond, NAMM President and CEO. “But as we have weathered the uncertainty and loss over the past two years, we again stand at the crossroads of opportunity. The NAMM Show serves as that platform for the next generation of technologies, products, and services, and sets the stage for NAMM Members to discover their own opportunities to advance their businesses, skills, and market opportunities.” 

    “It’s good to be back in Southern California and to see so many NAMM Members come together again to experience the products and innovations of the past two years and to enjoy the comradery and networking that’s been missing from our lives for far too long,” says NAMM Chair, Joel Menchey of Menchey Music Service. “We’re at our best when our industry is together, and at a show like this, inspiration emanates from every hall, conversation, and surprising chance encounters to become the launching board for the next great idea.”

    Reunification at The Crossroads 
    With a desire to reignite industry relationships, business and launch new products, the Show welcomed over 1,000 exhibiting members representing 3,500 brands across the campus of the Anaheim Convention Center. As a smaller yet truly global affair, the mix of 46,627 registered attendees represented 111 countries and territories. 

    Attendees were an invited mix of industry professionals from across the crossroads that included domestic and international retail and distribution buyers and employees, exhibitors, entertainment tech and pro audio buyers and professionals, media, artists, invited guests, and The NAMM Foundation’s GenNext (college music students and faculty), Music Education Days (school music administrators and buyers) and Nonprofit Institute (NAMM grantees and nonprofit affiliates).  

    “Our industry is built on the connection between people, and consequently, it’s been important and inspiring to connect again, face-to-face,” said Adam Hall Group CEO Alexander Pietschmann. “The new NAMM has afforded artists, music enthusiasts, and industry professionals the opportunity to engage in vital conversations, educational sessions and instilled further confidence that the live event industry is alive and well.”

    Tom Sumner, President of Yamaha Corporation of America, says, “Over two years removed from NAMM 2020, The NAMM Show 2022 reminded the Yamaha team of the power of in-person events. We launched our flagship grand piano, the CFX, at the show. There is no better way for our dealers to show attendees the craftsmanship and power of this magnificent instrument than to experience it in person and hear a great pianist play it. Our Yamaha team welcomed a large number of dealers, guests, and press to our booth, who got to touch and play instruments like the new Revstar guitars. With live music back, we were happy to treat NAMM attendees to the Yamaha Night of Worship with Fred Hammond on Friday Night and an amazing All-Star Concert on the Grand with Kandace Springs, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, and Tank and the Bangas. The Grand Plaza was filled each night until the last note!”

    “It’s great to be back in person,” adds Chris Martin, C. F. Martin & Co. “NAMM is a microcosm of our industry. From networking with our dealers, distributors, and industry peers, to providing a worldwide platform for launching new products, to consumer and artist connections, it doesn’t get more impactful than this. We wouldn’t miss it.”

    “This NAMM Show was more important than ever for Casio,” affirms Stephen Schmidt of Casio’s Electronic Musical Instruments Division. “This year’s forum enabled us to reconnect with our dealers and industry friends and provided a sense of normalcy and the ‘good old times.’ While we were excited to share our award-winning Privia pianos and Casiotone keyboards, we were equally grateful to NAMM for its strong leadership and support, and for working overtime to successfully and safely bring us all back together.”

    Mark Ravenhill of German Light Products says that “The industry is starting to get back on its feet again. We’ve been a longtime supporter and a longtime member of NAMM, and certainly through the pandemic, NAMM was one of the few organizations that really stood up for our industry, with our industry, to garner support. It was absolutely a ‘no-brainer’ to be here, with our industry. We’re here, we’re glad to be here and we’ll keep coming here.” 

    “NAMM is always a special date in our calendar as it’s a vivid reminder that we are part of something bigger than ourselves, an industry full of innovation that’s constantly driving towards delivering products that enable people to create and enjoy music. We are lucky to be part of it,” comments Andy Allen of Audient. 

    Joue Music’s Pascal Joguet says that “The NAMM show is legendary. Everybody involved in music knows about it. Far away from here, in the southwest of France, we have worked tirelessly to craft the Joué Play, a digital instrument with a soul – and we wanted to share it with the entire music community which is uniting here in Anaheim, during The NAMM Show.” This was the company’s first NAMM Show. 

    “For our company, the NAMM Show presents multiple layers of business value – it’s not just a linear event. It’s an opportunity to see where the industry and your competitors are headed, gathering feedback from your customers and work on those all-important relationships as the conversations you can have in-person are so much more productive than those you have virtually,” says Brad Lunde, president of TransAudio Group. “If you have a company and you’re not here, you have no idea what you missed – including the business opportunities that only happen by being present and participating.”

    “It was one of the most productive NAMM Shows ever,” says Jon Haber, president of Alto Music. “It was the right time, the right people and the right crowds, which meant it was seamless to get business done and see the people you needed to see. We’ll be back next year!”

    “We have had some problems with importing internationally, so it is important to be here to try to find the correct way to import new products,” said Hernan Mera, Twins Trade Music of Argentina. “Here we can see new products, new releases from not just one brand, but lots of other brands show their new products.”

    “I think for any on the retail side, any business owner, NAMM is a must. NAMM is the backbone of the industry,” adds Paul Tobias, Tobias Music. “This show, in particular, it’s great to see the huge turnout and we’re going to bounce back a little further next year, and I think in [January] 2024, everything is back in gear. For us, the learning sessions and the Idea Centers, and just the face-to-face meetings with our manufacturers, our sales reps, you can’t put a price on that. It is basically priceless.”

    Future-Focused Ideas to Fuel Opportunities and Business-Enriching Strategies 
    With the world’s experts at The NAMM Show, members had the opportunity to connect with top thought leaders in best-in-class education through more than 200 education sessions designed to engage, inform and inspire new ideas, as well as to further careers and prepare for the future against the backdrop of the industry gathering. 

    For many companies with new employees, the professional development sessions provided vital industry education.Jamie Latty, COO of Deering Banjos said, “In some ways, the NAMM Show is the glue of our business and our industry. This year, we have a number of new hires on the team and NAMM is the perfect place to immerse them in the industry and to take advantage of the educational offerings that can only be found here.” 

    NAMM U: Lead in the Next Chapter 
    Each day of the Show began with a NAMM U Breakfast Session in the Pacific Ballroom, inside the Anaheim Hilton. On Friday June 3, NAMM President and CEO Joe Lamond hosted “Breakfast of Champions” with a panel of industry leaders and innovators, including Alexander Pietschmann, Adam Hall; Kimberly Deverell, San Diego Music Studio; Lana Negrete, Santa Monica Center; Ray Williams, IMSTA; and Sophia and Desdamona, music-making robots from Hanson Robotics. Multi-GRAMMY® winner, composer and artist Kenny Loggins was presented with NAMM’s “Music for Life Award.” 

    In his interview, Loggins reminisced about his start and the role of the community music store. “I went into Pedrini School of Music in Alhambra [California], and I bought my first classical music from there, and I bought my first electric guitar there, when I was a junior in high school. All the kids in my neighborhood, we all had the same dream – to be the next big thing.” 

    On his advice for the next generation of musicians, Loggins offered, “As far as music goes, music is in our DNA. When I’m working with young artists, we’re talking about the love of music, its role, and its importance in our lives.” 

    On Saturday, June 4, Scott Stratten, president of UnMarketing and branding and relationship expert, presented “Leadership in a Post-Pandemic World,” which explored top-line strategies to strengthen business and personal brand; and on Sunday, June 5, “Best in Show” welcomed a panel of retail gear experts to recognize their picks of the innovative products, services and technologies found across the show floor. View the Best in Show results here: https://www.namm.org/thenammshow/2022/best-in-show-winners

    Retail Innovation and Financial Summits
    Ahead of the opening of The 2022 NAMM Show, retail leaders, managers and professionals from across the industry participated in two half-day intensive training experiences: the Retail Innovation Summit and Retail Financial Summit. Retail expert, consultant and trainer Bob Negen presented at the Retail Innovation Summit, and at the Retail Financial Summit, industry experts Alan Friedman, CPA, and Daniel Jobe of Friedman, Kannenberg & Co. shared an up-close look at what’s happening in the supply-chain world of musical products to help mitigate the effect of delivery delays in our post-pandemic era.

    The Future Is Hear: A3E, AES Academy, Dante and TEC Tracks 
    More than 60 pro audio sessions awaited emerging and established professionals from all aspects of production and performance, presenting myriad opportunities to grow their skills and careers in preparation for the future of all things sound. A3E: The Advanced Audio + Applications Exchange, presented a series of future-focused sessions, including “The Next Generation of Rap and Hip-Hop: Harnessing Music Technology for Empowering Creativity;” “The Future of the DAW: How AI, Blockchain and the Cloud Will Change DAWs Forever;” and “Visionary Women in Musical AI: Deep Dive Into the Future of Music;” to name a few. 

    AES Academy(Audio Engineering Society) presented five tracks centered on the following areas: room acoustics; loudness; new audio technologies and practices; modern music production; and immersive audio. Hot topics included “Immersive Audio 101, 202, and 303,” with Brian ‘BT’ Gibbs and Michael Romanowski; “Immersive and Inclusive’ Initiative,” presented by Leslie Gaston-Bird; “Raw Tracks Mix Breakdown,” with super producer/engineer Paul ‘Willie Green’ Womack; and “‘Born in the USA’ Raw Tracks Interview With Toby Scott.”

    TEC Tracks uncovered topics ranging from a series of how-to’s and key expert insights, including “Dolby Atmos: An Engineer’s Update;” “Music and Audio Mastering: Invasive or Subtle?;” “Running the Show: Sound Advice From Women Visionaries;” “Finally! Play Together—From Anywhere, With Ultra-Low Latency;” “Loud: A Conversation With Tana Douglas, the First Woman Roadie;” “An Interview with Noel Lee” and others. 

    On Friday and Saturday night, Herb Trawick and Dave Pensado, the dynamic duo of Pensado’s Place, returned to The NAMM Show. The pair were joined by hip-hop artist 24KGoldn, producer Nick Mac and on Saturday, super mixer Manny Marroquin and producer/songwriter Ricky Reed for deep conversations about the craft. 24kGoldn offered his advice for the next generation: “If you work at something you really care about it’s just a matter of time.” 

    The Worship Musician Summit at NAMM 
    On Saturday at the Show, TEC Tracks offered an all-day suite of sessions for House of Worship audio professionals and musicians. Curated by Worship Musician magazine, topics included “Marketing Brands and Products to Houses of Worship;” “Selecting the Right Sound System and/or Installer for Your House of Worship;” “Song Selection, Streaming and Licensing for Houses of Worship;” and “Guitar Technology for the House of Worship,” and many more. 

    Along with the pro audio professional development sessions, Audinate offered hands-on Dante AV networking training – free to all industry professionals. The courses included Dante Certification Level 1, Dante Certification Level 2 and Dante Certification Level 3.

    Entertainment Technology: Illumination and Education Abounds
    In collaboration with Entertainment Services and Technology Association (ESTA); the Event Safety Alliance (ESA); and PLSN and FOH, Lighting and Sound America/PLASA magazines, the Show’s free education and professional events provided the tools needed to navigate the next stage of any career in live event production.

    Entertainment Services and Technology Association (ESTA)
    ESTA’s extensive sessions covered everything from lighting and lighting networking to rigging and safety through in-depth education for entertainment technology and design professionals, as well as those responsible for their safety. Presented in conjunction with Lighting&Sound America, top thought leaders Richard Cadena, Ethan Gilson, Kent Jorgensen, Eddie Raymond and Bill Sapsis presented on topics ranging from “Electrify the Audience, Not the Stage,” “Safety in Event Planning” and “Wireless DMX512 Design and Best Practices.” The program also offered two deep dives: “New Guidelines for M.E.W.P.s—the Lifts Formerly Known as AWPs” and “OSHA 10: I.A.T.S.E.” 

    Event Safety Alliance (ESA)
    With event safety top-of-mind at every event, the Event Safety Alliance (ESA) shared a suite of educational sessions with a diverse roster of industry experts to explore critical issues within the live event safety space. Presentations on timely relevant topics included: “Show Stop: The One Agreement Everyone Must Agree On,” with safety expert Bryan Huneycutt; “Safety, Sustainability and the Venn Diagram of Our Industry’s Future,” with Neel Vasavada; and “Managing Stress and the Industry’s Return From the Pandemic” with Dr. Chayim Newman and Zack Borer. Other ESA speakers included Jim Digby, Zach Borer, Chris Kerr, and Roberta McHatton.

    Pro Production Sessions: Front of House and Projection, Lights & Staging News magazines shared interviews and behind-the-scenes presentations with entertainment technology leaders. Hot sessions included “How to Navigate Virtual Venues” and “From Fortnite to Roblox to Coachella: How to Navigate the Merge of Virtual, Live and Metaverse Venues.” 

    “PLSN and FOH magazines have been proud to present the Pro Production Sessions at NAMM over the years and we were particularly pleased to return in-person to the 2022 NAMM Show in Anaheim, CA,” says Terry Lowe, President of Timeless Communications. “The education component of NAMM is so important to the industry, and I believe that our sessions are a great addition to the roster of classes. They are also a real extension of the value PLSN and FOH put on informing the industry and highlighting the emerging creative production trends and technology innovations. We hope attendees enjoyed our sessions, and we look forward to seeing everyone in 2023!”

    Loudspeaker System Showcase
    In collaboration with the producers of Live Sound International magazine and 4WALL Entertainment, the Loudspeaker System Showcase will return to The 2022 NAMM Show, presenting an ideal demo opportunity for manufacturers and specifiers to check out the latest flown and portable systems to a mix of industry professionals. Participating companies included Alcons, Axiom Pro Audio, Bassboss, Innovox Audio and others.

    “During the last few days here at NAMM, the live audio market had a chance to come together as a community, to reconnect, share stories, learn about new products and experience the Loudspeaker Product Showcase.  It was great for our industry to be together and continue the healing process after two long years of shutdown.  The attendees were excited to be here and except for a few areas, our industry is getting stronger and recovering nicely,” said Kevin McPherson of EH Publishing. 

    At the Show, The NAMM Foundation returned curated education and sessions for professionals with its GenNextMusic Education Days and The Nonprofit Management Institute

    As a collaboration between The NAMM Foundation and The College Music Society (CMS), GenNext offered dedicated programming and access to The NAMM Show across 27+ different sessions and events for college music students and faculty. Notable sessions include “Cross-training in Music Technology: Lessons From the Pandemic Applied to the Future;” “Advocating Diverse Career Opportunities in Music;” and “Understanding Digital Music Rights and Revenue;” among others.

    Music Education Days 
    For music teachers and school administrators seeking ‘what’s next’ in music products and classroom technologies, The NAMM Foundation, in collaboration with Technology In Music Education (TI:ME), presented 30+ sessions and events designed to inform, inspire and engage with the tools relevant to today’s music classrooms. Session highlights includes “Music Administration Collaborative. Plan Your Program’s Success: Getting Started with Strategic Arts Planning;” “Rethinking Music Education in the Post Covid-19 World;” “Teacher Tech Talk,” which featured TI:ME Teacher of the Year winners; “Building a Nationally-Recognized Music Program: It’s All About Collaborative Structures;” and “Solution Based Learning Opportunities Addressing Current Topics in Music Education.” 

    In a special workshop, Kendall Isadore and Élise Sharp of The String Queens presented “Exploring SEL Strategies with The String Queens.” The workshop provided participants with a pedagogical journey employing a variety of interactive activities and individual reflections. 

    The track also gathered music education leaders at the Show for the “The Music Education Leadership ‘Call to Action’” Summit. The Summit raised critical questions currently facing music education and its future to advance music learning opportunities for all students. Panelists included Bob Morrison, Quadrant Research; Russ Sperling, San Diego Unified School District; Lynn Tuttle, American String Teachers Association; Dr. James Weaver, National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS); and Kendall Isadore and Élise Sharp of The String Queens. 

    The Nonprofit Management Institute 
    NAMM’s Nonprofit Management Institute provided nonprofit arts organizations and with sessions to grow and succeed in creating a world with more music makers. Session topics included “An Agile Nonprofit is a Successful Nonprofit:” “Unlocking Innovation to Up Your Nonprofit’s Game;” “Beyond Good Intentions: Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion in Programming, Operations, and Governance;” and “Reevaluate Your Mission and Vision to Meet the Needs of Your Community.” 

    Only-At-NAMM Moments 
    Each evening of the Show came alive on the Yamaha Grand Plaza stage with plenty of star power. At Thursday’s Yamaha Night of Worship, Fred Hammond and the Saddleback Worship Choir packed the Grand Plaza;Saturday’s Yamaha All-Star Concert on the Grand featured the likes of Kandace SpringsPreservation Hall Jazz Band and Tank and the Bangas

    Also on Saturday, The Grand Rally for Music Education with special guests Eric Whitacre and Gateways Brass Collective, returned. Groundbreaking composer and conductor Eric Whitacre took to the stage to bring live and virtual performance together in a hybrid performance of “Sing Gently,” featuring Ashley Ballou-Bonnema creator of sINgSPIRE, a virtual choir for individuals with Cystic Fibrosis. The event was presented in collaboration with Conn-Selmer, Hal Leonard, JackTrip, and Yamaha. 

    Honoring the Industry’s Leaders and Luminaries
    Thursday evening welcomed the tenth annual She Rocks Awards honoring women across the music industry. The event featured a star-studded performance lineup, including live music, and honored a varying range of artists, including iconic singer, actress, television host and former UN Goodwill Ambassador Dionne Warwick, GRAMMY®-nominated guitarist and BONES UK co-founder Carmen Vandenberg, and multi-instrumentalist Yvette Young, the front-woman for the math rock band Covet. Other honorees included Leslie Gaston-Bird – mixer, sound editor, author and a champion of diversity in the audio industry; Sherri Chung, Award-winning film and TV composer and Governor of the Music Branch of the Television Academy; Kerry Fiero, Founder of the Girl Power! Women Working in the Music Industry Conference; EveAnna Manley, president, Manley Laboratories aka “The Tube Chick;” Lyndsey Parker, Yahoo Entertainment Music Editor, SiriusXM host and author; and Julie Robbins, CEO of effects pedal manufacturer Earthquaker Devices. 

    Also on Thursday evening, the industry gathered to celebrate the spirit of the independent music retailer and to applaud their accomplishments, resilience, and commitment to serving music makers at the Top 100 Awards. The annual awards event also announced the “Best of” category winners, including “Dealer of the Year” and “Customers’ Choice” awards with All County Music of Florida taking home the coveted Dealer of the Year award. Read the release here.

    Friday saw the return of the Parnelli Awards to The NAMM Show. The Parnelli’s recognize the pioneering, influential professionals and companies for their contributions to the live production industry. The event brought together the live entertainment community in a vibrant gathering to recognize industry leaders, including David Bernstein of Rock-it-Cargo, with the Parnelli Lifetime Achievement Award; Peter Morse, lighting designer (Loretta Lynn, Tina Turner, Lionel Richie, and others), with the Parnelli Visionary Award; and Sam Berkow, inventor of SMAART audio software with the Parnelli Innovator Award. The evening event was hosted by Jammin Jay Lamont.

    Women of NAMM welcomed professionals from across the industry for a happy hour at the Westin Pool Deck. The evening concluded with an announcement of the WoN Summit and scholarship opportunity, as part of donations made to celebrate the life and legacy of Diane Martin. The WoN Summit program supports women working in the music products industry and their goals to connect, support, and grow their leadership and professional abilities.  An annual leadership emersion experience will be offered with the applicants receiving the educational experience covered by the awarded scholarship.

    At the TEC Awards on Saturday evening, the industry celebrated 28 categories of products and projects in the areas of Technical or Creative Achievement, and the individuals, companies and technical innovations used in sound recordings, films, broadcast television, and video games. View the complete list of winners and nominees here.

    For his timeless work and artistic innovation, Peter Asher was inducted and presented with the TEC Hall of Fame award. Throughout his decades-long career in the music industry, Asher has earned the reputation of being one of the industry’s most sought-after producers and performers. 

    Upon receipt of the award, Asher shared, “The 21st of January, 1964 was a Tuesday, and the first time I ever went into a real recording studio. I went into EMI studios on Abbey Road… By the end of that day, a few important things had happened. I decided I wanted to be a record producer because I saw what a producer could do, in terms of shaping the sounds…So I have to thank for this award, not only the TEC Committee but NAMM as a whole. And all the brilliant people who attend NAMM, and what they give us – all the great technology, the amazing instruments, the incredible inventions which sonically flourish in the hands of brilliant engineers.” 

    With the induction, Asher joins luminaries Leslie Ann Jones, Rose Mann CherneySkunk BaxterHal BlaineJack DouglasNathan EastGeoff Emerick, and others, the industry’s highest honor for pioneers of audio technology and the music industry’s most accomplished producers and audio technicians.

    Pioneer and bassist extraordinaire Carol Kaye was honored with this year’s Les Paul Innovation Award, one of the night’s most anticipated honors from The Les Paul Foundation. The Foundation’s Executive Director Michael Braunstein introduced the award and noted Kaye’s impact on the musical landscape, “Carol, like Les [Paul], built a legacy that will continue to encourage all people to create incredible sounds.” 

    Several artists took to the stage in tribute to Kaye in a musical celebration worthy of her long and revered career. The Les Paul Innovation Award has been presented annually to remarkably distinguished individuals from the music industry, such as Jackson Browne, Joe Perry (Aerosmith), Paul McCartney, Neil Young, Peter Frampton and 2020’s recipient, Joni Mitchell.  

    NAMM Show+ 
    The Show’s new digital extension, the NAMM Show+, provided a platform for attendees to connect with each other, livestream sessions, special events and performances from across the campus. Nearly 100 sessions and special events were livestreamed from the campus, with attendees able to engage through chat, networking features and more on the platform. 

    Looking Ahead
    The global crossroads of the music products, pro audio and entertainment technology industry will return to Anaheim April 13-15, 2023 and then again in January 2024. For additional information, please visit NAMM.org

  • TEC Award Winners Announced

    TEC Award Winners Announced

    Getty Images for NAMM

    Winners in 21 technical and seven creative excellence categories were announced at the 37th Annual NAMM TEC AWARDS this evening from the global NAMM Show in Anaheim, CA. Presented annually by NAMM, the event recognizes the exemplary achievements and innovations behind the sound of recordings, live performances, films, television, video games and multi-media. Comedian, actor and musician Fred Armisen returned as host for the evening event. 

    For only the second time in TEC history, three companies won two awards each in Outstanding Technical Achievement. They were Genelec (Loudspeaker Manager – GLM V4.0 in Production Essentials and FM Design in Studio Design Project); PreSonus (Sphere in Audio Education Technology and ATOM SQ in DJ Production Technology); and Universal Audio (UAFX Golden Reverberator in Musical Instrument Amplification and Effects and LUNA Recording System v1.1.8 in Workstation Technology). 

    The OutstandingCreative Achievement category winners for 2021 projects reflected a year filled with a slew of top-ranking entertainment. Disney+ took home top honors in Film Sound Production and Television Sound production for its animated movie, “Soul” and the second season of “The Mandalorian,” respectively. In the category of Record Production – Single or Track, “Lost Cause” from Billie Eilish (Darkroom/Interscope) took the top spot, while “McCartney III” (Capitol) won for Record Production – Album. In Interactive Entertainment Sound Production, Ubisoft was honored for its work on Assassin’s Creed Valhalla. 

    The evening recognized the timeless work and artistic innovation of Peter Asher, who was inducted and presented with the TEC Hall of Fame award. Throughout his decades-long career in the music industry, Asher has earned the reputation of being one of the industry’s most sought-after producers and performers. His career began in the ‘60s as the other half of the pop group Peter & Gordon. After the group disbanded, Asher was named Director of A&R at the Beatles’ Apple Records label, where he signed a then-unknown James Taylor. Asher would go on to work with the likes of Cher, Bonnie Raitt, Linda Ronstadt, Ringo Starr, and many others, earning him three GRAMMY® Awards for his talents. 

    Upon receipt of the award, Asher shared, “The 21st of January, 1964 was a Tuesday, and the first time I ever went into a real recording studio. I went into EMI studios on Abbey Road… By the end of that day, a few important things had happened. I decided I wanted to be a record producer because I saw what a producer could do, in terms of shaping the sounds…So I have to thank for this award, not only the TEC Committee, but NAMM as a whole. And all the brilliant people who attend NAMM, and what they give us – all the great technology, the amazing instruments, the incredible inventions which sonically flourish in the hands of brilliant engineers.” 

    After accepting the award, Asher performed “A World Without Love,” a song from Asher’s days in the duo, Peter and Gordon.  

    With the TEC Hall of Fame Award, Asher joins the likes of Dave Pensado and Herb Trawick (2020), Leslie Ann Jones (2019), The Section (2018), Jack Douglas (2017), and many others who have received the award since its founding in 1991.

    Pioneer and bassist extraordinaire Carol Kaye was honored with this year’s Les Paul Innovation Award, one of the night’s most anticipated honors from The Les Paul Foundation. The Foundation’s Executive Director  Michael Braunstein introduced the award and noted Kaye’s impact on the musical landscape, “Carol, like Les [Paul], built a legacy that will continue to encourage all people to create incredible sounds.” 

    Several artists took to the stage in tribute to Kaye in a musical celebration worthy of her long and revered career. The Les Paul Innovation Award has been presented annually to remarkably-distinguished individuals from the music industry, such as Jackson Browne, Joe Perry (Aerosmith), Paul McCartney, Neil Young, Peter Frampton and 2020’s recipient, Joni Mitchell.  

    A notable moment in the evening came from Sequential, the winner of the category of Musical Instrument Hardware for its Prophet 5. At the acceptance speech, David Gibbons of Sequential/Oberheim shared, “Life is a series of wins and losses. And the world of MI spent a huge loss this week. Dave Smith, founder of Sequential, creator of the Prophet 5, passed away unexpectedly on Tuesday. He was more than just the founder, he was an innovator, a mentor, and friend. His passing broke our hearts. And in so many ways, his life’s work broke the mold for synthesizer design. The Prophet 5 is a recreation of a 40-year synth design. And many people say the appeal comes from how alive it sounds. Did you ever think that perhaps, inventors breed some of their own lifeforce into their best designs? If that’s the case, then Dave’s spirit lives on in his remarkable body of work.” 

    The NAMM TEC Awards is held during the global crossroads of the music, pro audio and entertainment technology industries, The NAMM Show. NAMM TEC Awards supporters include the Les Paul Foundation; C.F. Martin & Co.; Harman; Eventide; International Music Software Trade Association; L-acoustics; Leapwing; OWC; The Recording Academy; Shure; and Synchrony Financial, with additional support from 100 GROUP; AVID; Broadjam; The Blackbird Academy; CAS – Cineman Audio Society; Game Audio Network Guild (GANG); ixi Mega; Korg; LATAM STAGE; Millennia: MPSE; Musica y Mercado; sE Electronics International, Inc.; Sonic Scoop; Studioexpresso; TASCAM; Wholegrain Digital; Wonder Wonder Sound; WSDG and many others.

    Congratulations to the 37th Annual TEC Award recipients: 

    Audio Apps & Hardware/Peripherals for Smartphones & Tablets
    Shure – Wireless Workbench 6.14.1

    Audio Education Technology
    PreSonus Audio – Electronics Sphere

    Computer Audio Hardware
    Rupert Neve Designs – MBC: Dual Path A-D Converter & Limiter

    DJ Production Technology (Hardware/Software)
    PreSonus Audio Electronics – ATOM SQ

    Headphone/Earpiece Technology
    Austrian Audio – Hi-X65 Professional Open-Back Over-Ear Headphones

    Large Format Console Technology
    Neve –  8424

    Microphone Preamplifiers
    Audient – iD4 MKII

    Microphones – Recording
    TELEFUNKEN Elektroakustik – TF11 FET 

    Microphones – Sound Reinforcement
    sE Electronics – V7 VE

    Musical Instrument Amplification & Effects
    Universal Audio – UAFX Golden Reverberator

    Musical Instrument Hardware
    Sequential – Prophet-5

    Musical Instrument Software
    EastWest Sounds – Hollywood Orchestra Opus Edition

    Production Essentials
    Genelec – Loudspeaker Manager – GLM V4.0

    Signal Processing Hardware
    Rupert Neve Designs – 5254 Dual Diode Bridge Compressor

    Signal Processing Software (Dynamics/EQ/Utilities)
    iZotope – RX 8

    Signal Processing Software (Effects)
    FabFilter – Timeless 3

    Small Format Console Technology
    Solid State Logic – UF8 Advanced DAW Controller

    Sound Reinforcement Loudspeakers
    Meyer Sound – ULTRA-X20 Compact Wide Coverage Loudspeaker

    Studio Monitors
    EVE Audio – SC4070

    Wireless Technology
    Sennheiser – Evolution Wireless Digital

    Workstation Technology/Recording Devices
    Universal Audio – LUNA Recording System v1.1.8

    Film/Sound Production 
    Soul, Disney+

    Interactive Entertainment Sound Production
    Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, Ubisoft

    Remote Production – Recording or Broadcast
    The Late Show With Stephen Colbert,  CBS

    Record Production – Album
    McCartney III, Paul McCartney, Capitol

    Record Production – Single or Track
    Lost Cause, Billie Eilish, Darkroom/Interscope

    Television Sound Production
    The Mandalorian, Season 2 – Disney+ 

    Studio Design Project
    Genelec Immersive Experience Center, Natick, MA FM Design