Another NAMM Show came to a close a month ago, at the convention center in Anaheim, which ran from Thursday to Sunday. For those unfamiliar to the convention, NAMM, the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM), is a trade show and not-for-profit association that “promotes the pleasures and benefits of making music and strengthens the $17 billion global music products industry.” It is a place for all musicians, music lovers alike, to come together and check our the newest products, and ideas in all aspects of music, for people of all backgrounds and ages.
What makes people continue to go to these trade shows and spend a whole day there?
The majority are serious musicians and workers who were able to have a day off and enjoy their pass, and at times bring a guest. I, was that guest, that got to explore for the first time the vastness of this musical wonderland. Consisting of three main floors, a basement, and of course the outside patio with amazing food trucks and live performances on stage, I began to see the immediate attraction. People from all over the world came to indulge in seminars and play with instruments.
The construction of music was just as powerful as the end result, and here was a “hub” where people came to share ideas and love for the sole purpose of music. Another beauty of music that I was trying to understand its vast power. To non-musicians it may seem boring, as goes any interest, but it wasn’t a snub center, or a place for judgement if your expertise level wasn’t up to par, it was a place for all to share one common love: music.
Besides the occasional celebrity encounters, if you were lucky enough to see any, it was the atmosphere that was unique. For three days nothing else existed: no jobs, no worries. Just music. Having this ability that touches the world is something in itself to merely being admired. I came across a couple of musicians and simply asked why do they continue to pursue music? Some answers were simple, “because I love it, because it makes me happy, because I can’t live without it.” Those were the among the popular answers received.
One answer stood out to me though: “because the reward is in the music itself.”
These manmade instruments are more than a creation of its one purpose, it is a creation of inspiration and life. From the people who designed it, made it, sell it, play it, and admire it, each part of the instruments’ journey created something unique for every individual. Truly holding the throne of universal in all aspects.
For the musicians that I did encounter, nothing mattered. The long nights, the juggling of jobs, life, and other occurrences, didn’t weigh them down, because this was an act that paid for itself. That is when you know your hobby, job, subject of interest, is more than the title chosen to describe it; it is a passion that must be continued.
All dreamers: Keep rockin’ on.