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In conversation with Joe Lamond, President & CEO- NAMM Show!

Could you elaborate on the new developments that one can see at NAMM 2019?

To me, the most important development at this year’s NAMM Show is the total focus on the attendee experience. People travel from around the globe to southern California to achieve their business goals, to build their careers and, to be more successful. NAMM has been fortunate to have created “the Crossroads of the Industry” which brings together the leaders in music and sound manufacturing, in distribution and retailing and in the associated fields of studio, theater, live music, and event production. Everyone who comes to the NAMM Show has access to a gold mine of information, education, and inspiration. Each show starts as a blank piece of sheet music, and our members and staff build it from there. Our world is continuously changing, faster and faster it seems, I’ve been going to NAMM for 37 years now, and no two shows have ever been alike!

From last year to this, what are some of the key changes you’ve seen in the music industry?
I see an interesting situation developing. On the one hand, technology is driving incredible innovation, electronic instruments, recording, and technology used in live events are better, faster and less expensive than ever. It also becomes obsolete quickly as the next model is even better than the last. And at the same time, I see an insatiable appetite for hand-crafted, custom made, beautiful instruments and gear that will last forever.

What are some of the education sessions one can look forward to at NAMM 2019?

At this time, there are over 400 professional education sessions to be held at The NAMM Show for those involved in music products, pro audio, and event technology. Perhaps the real challenge is how to fit it all in! Roles change, and I bet many of our attendees are involved in many parts of the industry or will be at some point in the careers. All sessions are designed to enhance business and skill sets and are relevant to improving your career regardless of which part of the industry you are currently in. From event technology and event safety to pro audio production and recording, all the way back to the how to build a music lesson program in your store. The schedule of educational offerings also includes sessions from collaborators ESTA (Entertainment Services and Technology Association), The Pro Production Sessions presented by Front of House and Projection, Lights &; Staging News magazines, and programming by Lighting & Sound America/PLASA; NAMM U; TEC Tracks; A3E’s The Future of Audio program; Audinate’s Dante Certification Training; AES@NAMM: Pro Sound Symposium Live and Studio, curated by the Audio Engineering Society; and Music Education Days, GenNext career development and the Nonprofit Institute from The NAMM Foundation. It sounds like a lot, but the trick is to get the schedule and pick the ones that are most relevant to you, and then go for it!

The breakfast sessions at NAMM are known to be extremely helpful for the industry. Are there any specific areas you are covering this time?

As with all professional education, NAMM Breakfasts are planned with our industry members in mind, and NAMM Show attendees can start their days with a free breakfast and a carefully curated set of sessions designed to challenge the status quo and to inspire everyone to greater success. Everyone needs breakfast, and by combining this with a great session, we’re virtually adding an extra hour of quality show time to everyone’s schedule! On Thursday, I’ll personally host the “Breakfast of Champions,” our theme this time is ‘The Originals’ and I’ll have a carefully chose group of surprise guests who are truly original in their approach to music and the music business. On Friday, futurist and innovation expert, Daniel Burrus will reveal the current and future trends guaranteed to shape the music products industry. He’ll look at how to use these trends to innovate with low risk, elevate your planning and accelerate profitability. Saturday will welcome best-selling business author, Scott Stratten  for his presentation of, “How to Win in the Age of Disruption.” He’ll address this current ‘age of disruption’ and how companies can win at business through trust, connection, consistency, and service. And then on Sunday, the final day of the Show, the ‘Best in Show’ panel session with top retail stores will share the products from the Show floor which they think are the ‘Best in Show.’

Could you talk about some of the gigs/ performances scheduled for the show?

Those who have been to the show know that it is famous for seeing and running into some of the biggest artists, producers, and celebrities in the world. Honestly, that’s not our goal, but it just seems to attract them. There is a tremendous curiosity for everyone involved to see what the latest innovations are in the world of music and sound products. We’ll also have countless concerts, appearances and industry meet-ups where people can share the unique theme that ties everything together at the NAMM Show, music. The nightly Grand Plaza concerts, the hotel
lobby bars and the dozens of manufacturer parties create a diverse musical celebration that is likely not replicated anywhere else in the world. The NAMM Show app is the best way to navigate all of this, I highly recommend everyone download it, its free! A variety of award shows held during NAMM also honor luminaries in all aspects of the industry. Friday evening, the Parnelli Awards return and honor live event professionals, products and services – the people who make concerts, touring and staging all possible. At the House of Blues, SheRocks is back for its seventh year, honoring women in the industry and influential female artists including Macy Gray, Nita Strauss, and Lisa Loeb. On Saturday, the 34th TEC Awards will honor the many individuals, companies and technical innovations used in sound recordings, films, broadcast television and video games in 31 categories. Leslie Ann
Jones, the groundbreaking engineer, producer, and Director of Music and Scoring for Skywalker Sound will be honored with induction into the TEC Hall of Fame.

What would be your message to people in India who aspire to come for your show?

It has been an honor for me to have visited your beautiful country, I hope to come back again soon. In the meantime, we welcome our industry family from India to the NAMM Show. And while the investment is not inconsequential, it’s a very long flight, I personally believe it will propel each and everyone who comes to greater success in the year ahead.

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