So this year, thanks to Kevan @ Tremol-No and some help from the Hoshino crew, I got into NAMM for the first time. For those who are unfamiliar, the NAMM show is the music industry’s big trade show. It’s turned into a global event and as the music equipment/supply industry keeps growing, so does the show. It’s a place for everyone from a huge guitar manufacturer like Fender or Gibson to show of their newest and staple products as well as knockoff companies and 2-3 person operations just getting their feet under them. By the way, it’s massive. The show takes place in the Anaheim Convention Center, which has over 800,000 square feet of space. They not only use all of it, they use more. There’s stuff outside, in the lobby, everywhere. I spent maybe 8 hours there on Saturday (pretty much from open to close) and aside from a quick lunch with a friend, it was all walking around, talking to people, looking at stuff. I played a lot of guitars, from fairly inexpensive Ibanez or Carvin models to borderline unaffordable Vigiers or similar high end brands. Best playing guitar there was by far in the Ernie Ball booth (they had a 30’s gangster theme, so all the guys were dressed in pin-striped suits with top hats, cool company, I liked the idea). I am now very eager to buy a John Pettrucci model. No joke. The 6 string version definitely surpassed anything else I touched at the show in terms of playability (there were plenty that were probably built better or looked nicer or sounded better). I’m going to start saving my spare change for one of those.