View Full Version : Summer NAMM in Nashville TN

06-10-2015, 01:08 PM
I am not involved in any sort of Music Business, but can possibly get in as a music student. Should I try? Is there a fee to attend?

Have any of you attended the Summer NAMM in Nashville? What should I expect? Will any ukulele vendors have a booth, or will it be devoted solely to other instruments?

06-10-2015, 01:48 PM

Know the Requirements to Join NAMM at the Show

Are you planning to join NAMM while at the show? Check out the required documentation and qualifications before you go!

Required Documentation You MUST Have in Hand to Join NAMM at the Show:

All Companies: Government-issued document (i.e. business license, sale permit, etc.), two invoices (i.e. purchase orders of supplies, sales of products, purchasing of products, etc.)

Commercial Recording Studios: Gear list, price list, pictures of studio

Companies that Do NOT Qualify for Membership:

Mobile Application Software, Band, Churches, City Schools, Concert Promoter, DJs, Film and Movie Companies, Gaming Companies, Home Recording Studios, Karaoke Companies, MP3 Player Companies, Music Clubs and Venues, Performing Artists or Musicians, Private Music Teachers, Producers, Production Companies, Radio Stations, Record/CD Stores, Recording Labels, Social Media/Forum Companies, Songwriters, Studio Audio Engineers, Theaters, Tracks, Samples and Loop Companies

If you have any questions about NAMM Membership requirements, please send an e-mail to join@namm.org or call 760-438-8001 (toll-free: 800-767-6266).

06-10-2015, 02:12 PM
No thanks, not planning to join NAMM. I read on their site that they are now allowing music educators and music students to attend.

06-10-2015, 03:10 PM
I am a music educator. I would be interested in attending.

06-10-2015, 03:48 PM
UkeJenny, on this page:

Registration is now open to pro audio professionals and buyers representing*non-member companies, venues and houses of worship, as well as music educators and music majors. Must be 18 or over to attend Summer NAMM. Begin your application now by clicking the button below.

Additionally, on this page:

Is the show open to musicians/non-industry attendees?

On one day a year, NAMM opens its doors to musicians and the many pro-light, sound and staging professionals in Music City for Music Industry Day. Learn more at www.namm.org/musicindustryday (https://www.namm.org/summer/2015/music-industry-day).

06-11-2015, 04:45 AM
How much does it cost?

06-11-2015, 01:20 PM
My son lives there now and works in the industry. Should be a fun show!

06-12-2015, 05:15 AM
How much does it cost?


07-12-2015, 09:47 AM
I attended Summer NAMM yesterday, and it was a great experience. I look forward to attending again in the future. I did take some pictures, and will try to post them in this thread and in some other threads I'll devote to specific manufacturers.


Some others have posted here that NAMM is closed to the public, and that only people in the trade (or those who have begged a pass from someone in the trade) are allowed in. They are (normally) correct. Once per year, however, NAMM opens their doors to the public on one specific day. The NAMM representative who I spoke to explained that this only happens at the Summer NAMM event.

I registered online, and purchased my ticket. I then had to take a printout of my confirmation with a photo ID to the registration counter, where I received an armband. I learned later that all of the exhibitors and retailers wore lanyards instead.


I had arrived early, so the lines were very short when I registered. Vendors were allowed into the exhibit hall, but John Q. Public was not allowed inside until 10 AM. There was plenty to look at outside. Several glass booths contained interments from different manufacturers, and one installation was devoted to providing free copies of magazines.


As the day wore on, the stacks of magazines reduced in size and were replenished until no inventory remained. As stock was depleted, a sign was flipped to say so and a board was erected to block off that column. This kept the display looking clean and organized. It communicated to me that they anticipated running out of some titles, and had planned for it.


Inside the exhibit hall were booths for a wide variety of instruments, including some ukuleles. Kamaka, Kanilea, and Koaloha were notably absent… but I wasn't surprised because a detailed map of the exhibit hall with vendor names was available when I first purchased my admission. I say that it's notable because Nashville is not a big ukulele town. The guitar definitely dominates here.

In addition to guitars (and ukuleles) there were drums, harps, fifes, bagpipes, violins, violas, trumpets and other horns, and ocarinas. Some booths were devoted to fabric or leather straps, song and method books, custom amplifiers, or to selling exotic woods to instrument makers. A surprisingly large number of booths were devoted to earbuds, wireless, or otherwise. One vendor offered glue-on fingernails for folks who like to fingerpick.


Sorry, that one is a sideways pic here, but not on my computer.
...continued in next post

07-12-2015, 09:57 AM
Some of the wood for sale...

I saw products I've never seen before in any music store, and I was delighted by the experience. I love learning about new products, and I got to meet some very nice people. I was able to see entire product lines in person instead of only via the Web. I examined ukuleles and straps which are not carried by any of the local stores, and saw ukulele brands I had not heard of previously.

...again, I don't know why these vertical shots are sideways.



One thing I was not able to do, however, was hear any specific instrument. This was impossible due to the cacophonous, disharmonious aural assault created so many competing instruments. The drum companies were gathered on the left side of the hall, the amps and pedals gathered on the right side, and the electric guitar makers mostly gathered in the back. Each vendor was limited by the rules to 85 decibels, but there were over 400 vendors.

NAMM did provide a few sound isolation booths (think Get Smart cone of silence) for those who did want to assess to tonal qualities of a specific instrument. I didn't try one, but "came that close".


One of the vendors was of the opinion that the public ought to allowed in at all events. He said that the fact that I was wearing a wristband and not a lanyard made it easy for him to know who he was talking to. He is aware that some people who wear lanyards are not actually in the industry, and this makes him uneasy.

07-13-2015, 01:29 PM
Congrats on your NAMM experience! I've been going for years..It's still loads of fun!