NAMM 2020 (Day One) – It’s like Christmas in January!

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By Guitar Girl Magazine – January 16, 2020

The NAMM Show is finally here! The annual National Association of Music Merchants trade show (aka the NAMM Show) held in January in sunny Anaheim, CA at their massive convention center is like the joy of leaping out of bed Christmas morning to see the newest and brightest innovations in the music industry. Our new decade is already being referred to as the roaring 20s and in our golden age of gear, the NAMM Show is the shining star of all new things musical. It gives reason for anyone who’s anyone to make the west coast pilgrimage for this highest of the mountain display. While Guitar Girl Magazine has more of a focus on guitars, pedals and amps, the NAMM show has everything from all things with strings, to pianos, percussion, pro audio, software and more. The NAMM Show is “the” destination.

“NAMM Essential Trilogy”

With its ginormous scope, the NAMM Show can be a tad bit overwhelming as there’s so much to see/do and is the networking extravaganza of the year. Putting travel, lodging and the adventure of parking aside, what you need to hit the ground running to get a solid start to your NAMM experience are “The NAMM Essential Trilogy”:

  1. Download the NAMM app on your phone
  2. Show map
  3. Event schedule

Ok, you’ve got the three essentials. As you look through them, you realize that there’s a megaton of information. Don’t freak out, it’s going to be ok. Take a moment to ground yourself (ex. breathe into a bag or have a quad shot of espresso…whatever works for you). Now come up with a plan of what you REALLY     want to see and do. It helps if you break it down to morning, afternoon and nighttime activities. A “no-brainer” is to start your day off with the NAMM U breakfast but get there early. You will be stunned at how long the lines are to get in but you’ll be even more impressed when you see how they get everyone in, fed and out the door for the day’s start of NAMM. Mornings are your uber prime time so go do what’s most important to you early. Afternoons are for your second-tier priorities and evenings are for performances and networking.

“She Rocks Awards”

Guitar Girl Magazine NAMM recommendations:

  • She Rocks Awards put on by the WIMN is one of NAMM’s crown jewels. If you’re only going to one NAMM event, this is it. This year our own Tara Low will be recognized as one of this year’s award recipients for her hard work. This year the She Rocks Awards is on Friday the 17th 6-10 PM at the House of Blues. Registration is required so get on it!


  • Fender
  • Gibson
  • Guitar Center
  • Martin
  • PRS
  • Taylor
  • D’Angelico
  • The Boutique Guitar Showcase

Performers – Thursday, January 16, 2020

  • Sarah Longfield
  • Becky Langan
  • Melissa Gottlieb
  • Shelita Burke
  • Sister Speak
  • Betsy Wright
  • Seymour Duncan Friends Band – Lari Basilio
  • Tiffany Christopher
  • Stacy Mitchhart
  • Linday Ell
  • Emily Elhaj
  • Sarah McLachlan
  • Joyann Parker
  • Kendall Renee
  • Moriah Formica
  • Natalie Gelman


  • NAMM U Retail “Crossroads” – Breakfast 8 AM (mentioned above)
  • The Psychology of Change in Music Business: Gender Equality Can Happen
  • She Rocks Awards/WiMN Panel featuring Laura Whitmore
  •  SoundGirls Mentoring in Live Sound and Event Production With Karrie Keyes
  • Cleaning Up Your Stage Sound
  • 5 Instagram Power Users—and What You Can Learn From Them
  • Networking: How to Do It and Why It’s Essential
  • SoundGirls Mentoring in Recording Arts With Leslie Ann Jones
  • Smart Touring
  • I Have a Story to Tell: Effective Use of Social Media
  • How to Prepare Your Music for a Successful Release
  • How Clarinet Became Cool: Leveraging YouTube and Social Media
  • How to Amplify Your Visibility With Google Ads
  • SoundGirls Mentoring in Contracts & Negotiations With Piper Payne

“Shining star of all new things”

This is only for Thursday so you can see that there is a boatload of things going on.

Shake off the travel jitters, get grounded with the NAMM Essential Trilogy, make your plan and jump into the excitement of your NAMM experience – Christmas!

Don’t forget to take your shoes off as you pass out from jet lagged, elated exhaustion. Tomorrow is “A Game – Go Time”, which is when the quad shot of espresso comes in handy.

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