View Full Version : Looking back on NAMM 2015

02-04-2015, 07:53 AM
This was my first year to (virtually) follow the annual NAMM show. I was struck by how many fancy ukes were on display. So I figure that either 1) it's like this every year - everyone pulls out all the stops for NAMM then afterwards goes back to business as usual OR 2) there really is a trend toward fancy ukes. I'd like to hear from anyone with some perspective on this. Thanks.

Jon Moody
02-04-2015, 08:00 AM
It's a little of both.

Obviously, any builder (no matter the instrument) wants to put their best foot forward and will pull out all the stops to make some jaw-dropping instruments for the NAMM show. You see this most often with guitar and bass builders, that they have a certain instrument that was made for the '12 NAMM show, that they then sell at a premium. With smaller builders, this isn't really a surprise at all and is something that you see on a regular basis in Hall E.

However, when you see such names as Kala, that are known for their quality mass-produced instruments, putting out higher end ukuleles with fancy tops and other accouterments, there is definitely a growing trend toward higher end instruments.

02-04-2015, 09:16 AM
Pretty much all of the booths I stopped by had both standard line and high end displayed. NAMM is a place to show everything ya' got since it's supposed to be for buyers to make deals with manufacturers/distributors.

02-04-2015, 10:04 AM
Many manufacturers will make a few show specials. They want to show the range of what they can do. They also want to attract attention to their booth. If you are a dealer and you sell something like Kanilea, chances are you've seen all their regular models and other than to say hello to a vendor aren't going to be that excited. The manufacturer wants to generate excitement.

One of my issues with NAMM is that a lot of stuff that is announced is not ready at NAMM time and a significant chunk of it will never actually be ready. There have been many products I've waited for and never seen. I cracked up at the interviewee who said that NAMM stands for "Not Available Maybe March".

02-04-2015, 10:19 AM
Is admission limited to merchants and other industry types or can consumers and enthusiasts get in also?

Jon Moody
02-04-2015, 10:28 AM
Is admission limited to merchants and other industry types or can consumers and enthusiasts get in also?

It's not a consumer show. However, it's fairly easy to get a pass if you know someone in the industry.

I know they have a "Consumer Day" at the Summer NAMM (in July, in Nashville) but I'm not sure about Winter NAMM. I thought it was either Saturday or Sunday, but I heard this year they weren't letting ANYONE in without a pass.

02-04-2015, 08:08 PM
The Anaheim show is only for members of NAMM. They do have a category for guests of members, but the member has to pay for each ticket.