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[Updated 1/16/11 2pm] NAMMnesthesia! That's what this is!! Over 1-million square feet of walking space cram packed with everything music you can think of! Coming here for the first time time to cover it thinking I could possibly do it by myself is like thinking I can win the lottery choosing the numbers 1-2-3-4-5-6! Overwhelming can't even explain it! Add on top of every know industry person/musician on planet earth is walking by you it's crazy! You think you want to get to a certain booth or demonstration and instead of a 5min walk it ends up being 20min! Add the photo opportunities in there and your head spins with NAMMnesthesia! You're here 10 hours then ya go to shows till 2am each day! And I thought I could blog daily..I need my 3 hours of sleep! HA! With this being the first full day and my first actual NAMM, it was a day of soaking in information and visual overload. There were a couple times I'd stop at a walkway crossroad and just freeze and look around wondering where i should go next. With hundreds and hundreds of company booths for musical instruments, accessories, clothing, lightning, seminars, performances, educational classes etc. NAMM is truly the EPIC center of the musical universe as a whole this January 13-16th.
After settling down from the initial overload I made a couple demonstration performances of the day. Jackson Browne revealed his new signature Gibson acoustic. Paul Reed Guitars revealed a whole new line of signature guitars including Heart's Howard Leese who now plays with The Paul Rogers Band and Bad Company. Howard also did a signing for his latest solo CD "Secret Weapons." Walking around (see pics below for all related ramblings here) saw the most amazing looking guitar from Warrior handmade instruments. If ya think Jesus rocks, then this is the guitar for you if ya stick $100k in the Warrior collection plate! The other amazing guitar was the 1.5 Millionth Martin Acoustic Guitar made: a Leonardo Da Vinci Mona Lisa Special Edition! Guitarist/vocalist Robb Flynn of Machine Head revealed his new Gibson/Epiphone signature flying V guitar. See the photo of the ESP guitar I could've walked out with if I had $35k laying around. Bad ass metallic masterpiece! I even got to play with the new mini Zakk Wylde guitar!
Highlight of the day in the people meetings for me was Bootsy Collins! A member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Bootsy was the original funk rock bassist! He was so cool to talk to and even gave me the animated pose shot of the day. After walking around NAMM for hours we headed over to Galaxy Theater for The Groove Remains The Same tribute concert to legendary rock drummer, John Bonham (Led Zeppelin). I was STUNNED!! This has to become a tour!! Lots of great drummers giving it up to John Bonham in the most logical way possible; play their favorite song on a Bonham replica kit with The Moby Dicks! Carmine Appice (Vanilla Fudge, Rod Stewart, Ozzy), Vinny Appice (Black Sabbath/ DIO/ Heaven And Hell), Kenny Aronoff (John Cougar, Smashing Pumpkins), Frankie Banali (Quiet Riot), Charlie Benante (Anthrax), Dave Lombardo (Slayer), Jimmy D'Anda (Bulletboys), James Kottak (Scorpions), Abe Laboriel (Paul McCartney, Sting), Xavier Muriel (Buckcherry), Chris Slade (AC/DC, The Firm), Chad Smith (Chili Peppers, Chickenfoot), Brian Tichy (Whitesnake, Foreigner, Billy Idol, Ozzy), Simon Wright (AC/DC, DIO) to name a few, KILLED IT! It was so fresh cause each drummer gave a different vibe. I thought the Bonham set was gonna crumble when Abe Laboriel came out and played. Be like me banging on a Fisher Price set, this man is living LARGE! Check out the Bonzo info! First real night of NAMM done!