You can find part 1 here, a recap of The WiMN She Rock Awards Show.
After the breakfast, we headed into the NAMM Show for a busy day of music, new products and new discoveries.
We attended the MXL Microphones press conference to announce some of their new products, including the new Mixcraft 6 Vocal Studios software and condenser microphone. This low cost package has the same features as its pricier competitors like Logic, ProTools and Cakewalk, but is more user friendly. In addition, MXL is coming out with a new line of mobile microphones to compete with IK Multimedia's iRig system. They also have a line of relatively inexpensive studio microphoness that allow almost anyone to put together a professional home studio.
As we entered Hall E, we made a stop at Deering Banjos to check out the banjo used by indie artist Josh Damigo, the Phoenix. This banjo is made of maple and has two pick-ups to provide both blend and volume control. More to follow on this item.
We also stopped to listen to Steve Oliver's jazz stylings as he demonstrated his guitar at Carvin, and paid proper homage to Jaclyn Swedberg, the 2012 Playboy Playmate of the Year.
We stopped and enjoyed the music of Nina Storey, Mela Lee and Magnolia Memoir as well as Taylor Matthews at the Sennheiser booth, and Pat Simmons of the Doobie Brothers at the Taylor booth. All of the performances were outstanding. I really enjoyed listening to Nina Storey, as she is one of the few artists performing at vendor booths who talk about the products they are demonstrating.
I also interviewed Jon Durant, who will be releasing his new prog rock colloboration with Colin Edwin entitled Burnt Belief. More on that in a subsequent article.
I ran into Dawn Johnson, former keyboardist of the Christian rock band, Crumbacher, and her son, Chris Ryan, who informed me of their latest project involved ASCAP. More on that soon.
I also spoke to Bill Bennett of the Sweet Relief Musicians Fund, who was there with several of his staff, Aric Steinberg and Rob Max.
My final booth appearance was at IK Multimedia where I learned about several new products which had already received Best of Show at the recent CES trade show, including the new iLoud external speakers and the Blueboard, which allows Bluetooth connectivity between iOS devices through the iRIG HD. These devices and their accompanying software allow a musician to use an iPad, iPod, iPhone or MAC, as well as Android devices to connect their musical instruments and allow a full recording studio or performance quality sound without the need for heavy amplifiers and expensive recording software.
After a much needed dinner break, we returned to the Marriott to witness a bit of history - a concert by Caleb Quaye, original guitarist for Elton John. Quaye's performance was recorded for a future documentary and was impeccable. Among the artists watching the show was Kenny Metcalf aka Elton the Early Years, who recently introduced Quaye's character into his tribute show.
I was saddened that I could not attend the special private concert by Elton John, which was held at Disney's California Adventure's Hyperion Theater for dealers of Yamaha products. I also had to miss the Jason Adamo Band concert at the Marriott.