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[[Please note hotel Internet connection has been hit and miss so reports might be a little behind]]
What a day #1 it was! Up at 3am drive to the airport at 4am in 4 inches of 32 degree snow/slush, get on a plane at 6:00am and next thing ya know I wake up and sunny 70 degrees! I should've been born in Orange County, California! All is well until I go to rent my car and guess what!? Can't find my driver's license. Somehow I lost it between making it through security at SeaTac Airport and landing at John Wayne Airport. So no ID no car. Spend the next hour on phone with Port of Seattle and John Wayne Airport and no one turned in to the lost and found. On the edge of being sick over it, wifey to the rescue and overnighting me my passport so I can at least fly back Sunday without hopefully too much troubles. Lucky I had my new business cards on me with my photo on it so I could check in to the hotel. So after a $60 taxi ride from the airport to my hotel then to NAMM in Anaheim I was a little nervous about checking in to get my NAMM badge without my ID but all was good when I said my name and the gal said (like she knew me) "Oh Mike hey! Got it right here" and that was it. Felt so relieved that went smoothly then my guardian angel went into full force! I turn around and I hear "Mike! Ya made it!" and there stand one of the Rabid AIC chicks (Jill) I met on the Alice in Chains tour this past year in Las Vegas! Come to find out she and her husband run TourBusLive.com down here in OC and they will be driving by my hotel each day for NAMM!! Instant transportation just like that each day. Are you kidding me? Nearly teared up thinking how lucky was that? I was ready to blow hundreds in Taxi fees then poof Jill to the rescue!
So today was Media/Press Day at NAMM from 10am-2pm. Us lucky few were allowed in a day early to see/report on any early participating company product releases and attending artists. Since I arrived late with all the issues of losing my licence I'm amazed what all I did in the two hours i had. These names might ring a bell in the rock world: Phil Collen, Alex Skolnick, Terry Bozzio, Governor Huckabee, What the, Governor Huckabee! Yes former Arkansas Governor Huckabee, rumored to be a 2012 Republican presidential candidate, is in attendance to speak about his efforts to get more school kids access to musical instruments across the country. Known for his bass playing he later sat down with Def Leppard's Phil Collen and C. F. Martin & Co. guitars representative in a quick simple jam session for the press. Of the products i saw today the winner in my book goes to the Peavy Ampkit Link, an unparalleled guitar amp and effects iPhone application! You gotta see the videos on this thing: http://www.peavey.com/ampkitlink See my photos below also of Alex Skolnick (Testament/Alex Skolnick Trio) demonstrating some of it. The possibilities are endless with a iPad hookup. Practice or record anywhere with just your iPhone and practically any amp/head/effect setup out there. Fully customizable and way cheaper that lugging an amp, effect boxes etc around. Another cool product I saw was the Sonomax Sculpted Eers. A custom molded earphone in less that 4 minutes with full acoustic seal! Molded so they don't fall out even when you are active! Check it out at: http://sculptedeers.com/sonofit.html
Also C. F. Martin & Co. unveiled their 1.5 millionth Martin guitar! A one-of-a-kind Leonardo DaVinci-inspired inlays! The pick guard is even an image of the Last Supper! See photo below but watch for full detailed set soon. Time to get a good nights sleep so I can be up the next 48 hours straight...ha!!