NAMM 2018 will go down in history as one of our best NAMM experiences in over 20 years attending as Ashdown. This was largely due to having none other than the legend that is Geezer Butler from Black Sabbath come by to do a signing for the launch of the ‘Head of Doom’. This was very much unexpected, as we ask many of our artists every year if they fancy making the trip to Anaheim for a signing. Often they are on tour or working somewhere exotic during the show and this year it looked like Geezer would be unavailable but last minute his travel plans changed and was able to make it to the show on the Friday. We had very much underestimated the draw of Geezer…….
Anyway the show started on the Thursday and we had a busy calendar for the day along with a few surprise visits from the amazing @ James Lomenzo who plugged himself into the ‘Head of Doom’ and made us all feel we needed to practice.. Then on to an evening out with the kind people of Bass Guitar mag UK who took us to see a Hockey match (ice hockey) the Ducks vs the Jets… It was a great game, two of us being Hockey players ourselves it was great to see a proper NHL game all be it a little strange stopping for ad breaks and such, the Ducks won in the end after overtime and then a final shoot out 4-3… Great game and great night thanks @Future Publishing!
So as we touched upon earlier, Friday was Geezer Butler day @NAMM and before the show had even opened at 9am (10am show opens) we had a line of people. We get to the show early everyday, put the hoover round and polish everything before the day ahead, so was rather strange having people coming up to the booth before the show had even opened asking when Geezer would be there (2pm). Even after telling them the time they said they would wait, many of them being exhibitors with their own booths to man…. Any way this got progressively out of hand, so much so we had to hire 6 additional security guards to manage the crowds, with one of the show floor managers doing a head count of 1100 people at 1pm. The line went round our booth then round our poor neighbours booths blocking the whole front of @Ernie Balls booth and @DanaBgoods…. Needless to say after a bit of careful re-directing we were able to keep everyone happy and the signing went on without a hitch. Unfortunately we had to keep people moving as some had bought their entire record collections along with the kitchen sink to sign so thanks to the awesome Terry Welty for keeping the line moving and taking the grunt from some of the over excited fans… Sorry to anyone who couldn’t have their prized possessions signed but we had to keep the line moving, little did we know our line was being monitored and timed, at the heat of the line around 3pm we were getting through 1 person every 8 seconds but still had around 400 people in the line. So sorry to anyone who didn’t get the chance and thank you everyone for making the time to meet a legend and hopefully take the time after the event to check out our web site and the ‘Head of Doom’…. People were plugging the amp in all day long and being blown away by the tone and power. We had it running into an ABM-810 cab (with custom silver grill), to say it was trouser flapping was an understatement with passes by later commenting ‘thats how bass should sound’ the ‘Head of Doom’ was a huge success. Thank you @ Geezer Butler for making the trip and driving yourself down to Anaheim for the show. Huge thanks to @Terry Welty for everything you did to make this day/amp possible! Elated from the days events we headed out for a meal with our friends from @Aston Mics and then on to a boring early night ready for the day ahead….
Saturday’s at NAMM are usually reserved for signings and hordes of public guests flooding the floors, so we normally save all our signings for that one day. Although this year was a little different as Geezer appeared the day before but we still had our good friend and all round legend Shavo Odadjian from System of a Down signing at the show and yet again as the show opened we had people waiting in Line and he wasn’t signing until 12pm. So two hours prior to his arrival we had a line 10 deep and counting… It was going to be another manic day at the show with the hordes of public guests gathering in their masses all armed with something to get signed and all willing to stand in line for hours on end at the chance of meeting their heroes. This is what keeps our industry moving and for some people this show is a once in a lifetime opportunity, we had a good friend and loyal Ashdown fan come all the way from Australia with his band for the event so its always good to put on a show otherwise what’s it all for…. So a huge thank you again to everyone who came by!!
Massive thanks goes out to @Shavo Odadjian and @Velvet Hammer for coming down and spending the afternoon with us at our booth and making the 2018 NAMM show a huge success…. Then it was on to dinner with our lovely new USA distributor Davitt & Hanser a Jam Industries division at a beautiful restaurant upon one of the only hills in Anaheim. With a beautiful view over LA and surrounding areas it was a great way to see in the relationship with a touch of calm after a manic three days at the show….
Sunday at NAMM… Well what can we say it is almost a pointless day other than getting the chance to walk the floor and say goodbyes, ‘until next year’ a common phrase muttered around the show floor for the day along with ‘selling off anything cheap?’ getting thrown around a lot with people strangely getting offended when you tell them sorry its all sold… It was also a chance for some of our busy bass playing friends to come by catch up in a little less chaos, Pete Griffin came by for a catch up as well as a few others including Fred Sablan, Eric Runquist, Phil Buckman, David Hart and many more, it was great to catch up with so many of you, thank you. Then 5pm strikes and its the task of breaking down the display starts, well the waiting game begins… It can take up to 3-4 hours to receive your empty cartons after the show closes and all carpets have been removed so we normally close up what we can and keep the area clear then go get something to eat before we end up being stuck there till the early hours…. On the way to getting a bite next door at the Hilton we passed an amazing Japanese Duo busking outside the convention centre, their name was KyoRiku (Kyotaro & RiKuo) and honestly it was one of the most refreshing sights we witnessed at the show just drums and bass with a huge amount of front, very much a visual art as much as musical but just WOW! A great way to end the show for us, we watched with our good friend Stuart Spector with both our Mark Gooday and Stu watching with open mouths we had to give them our card, they were awesome!! Check em out on YouTube and watch this space…..
Anyway that was our NAMM show 2018, we packed up that night and headed on our way home on the Tuesday after packing up our warehouse and getting everything organised for its return…
The response to the NEW products launched at the show was incredible with people plugging into everything from our new Acoustic AA-50 and AA-100 to the all NEW OriginAl light weight combos and new AAA bluetooth practice combo. We also had our new Meters products on display for all to plug in and listen to including our NEW range of Precision Audio Systems designed for consumers with the musician firmly in mind with instrument inputs for home connected listening….Keep your eyes open for more news from our consumer division Meters Music.
Thank you everyone who came by and said hi and spent the time with us at the show, it was our pleasure to see you and we can’t wait for the year ahead!