90,114 Registered Attendees Hit 2011 NAMM Show

The National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) today announced the final registration and exhibitor numbers for the 2011 NAMM Show, the largest and longest-running musical instruments and products trade show in the United States.

At show close, NAMM reported 90,114 registered attendees, a three percent increase from last year and representing a new attendance record for the 109-year-old show. International registration also experienced a two percent increase from last year to 10,400. Another sign of economic recovery in the industry, the association reported 1,417 exhibitors at this year’s show, including 247 new exhibitors.

“The world’s brightest minds and most innovative music companies came together in Anaheim for four amazing days of commerce, networking and learning,” said NAMM President and CEO Joe Lamond. “After meeting with NAMM Members from around the world, I am continually impressed and amazed at the resolve and optimism our industry has shown these past years and I believe that we are now on a path of recovery and future growth as more people of all ages and talent levels discover the fun and proven benefits of playing music.”

The annual trade show is the place where music products retailers meet face-to-face with manufacturers to make their biggest purchases or gain product knowledge for their stores in the year ahead. At show close, the mood on the floor was upbeat.

“All in all the events and the attendance has been up, the mood is very positive this year,” said Jon Rooff of Dean Markley Strings, Inc. “It’s not like it was two years ago, and even last year there was still a lot of negative economic talk from the dealers. A lot of people, like us, have focused their business. We’ve focused our business back on what we do best and a lot of the stores have done that, and that’s how they’ve survived economically. 2011 for the music industry I think it’s going to be very strong, very vibrant. For our company in particular, we’re looking at probably 20 to 30 percent growth this year. It’s going to be a monster year for us, mainly because we went back to our roots.”

“This has been a really good show this year,” said Larry Urie, national sales and marketing manager at PRS Guitars. “I’m sensing a lot of optimism in the market. It’s been surprising. But we’ve been very crowded, we’ve done very, very well and I really see a shift coming.”

“This year has been crazy—from the moment the doors opened we have been busy,” said Rob Cunningham, Planet Waves product specialist at D’Addario & Company, Inc. “It’s been a constant flow of people and business is great. We had a great time.” “This is our third year here and by all measures it’s been our best yet,” said Peter Anderson, president of Anderson Group, a company that insures musical instruments worldwide. “But every year it’s been good so I have no complaints. We’re delighted to be here and we’re already talking about next year.”

“We come every year—we’ve been here for 20 years in the same booth,” said Maria Rose of Guitarra Antonio Aparicio of Valencia, Spain. “Our experience is good, especially this year. We’ve seen more people in the halls than last year and I think it’s going to be a very good year this year.”

This year, the show highlighted many new features, exhibits and learning pavilions, offering NAMM members and music product professionals business tips and insight for success in today’s marketplace.

Themed “Take It to ’11,” this year’s NAMM Show added a new App and Gaming Pavilion, welcoming this growing market of high-tech music-making product companies to the show for the first time.

“At NAMM we unveiled the trumpet app and it’s been great,” said Tom Scharfeld, president and founder of Spoonjack, a musical app developer. “In general I think this is the place to be for music. Our products are apps and they are sold through the Apple app store so people might ask why would we be here. Well, it’s because this is where music is. Everyone in this room is going to have some sort of interest in what we’re doing. And if they like it they’ll tell their friends. Retailers in particular. They’re working with customers. They’re building relationships. They’re interested in showing them new things. Our products are ultra entry-level instruments. Instead of going off and buying a $1,000 trombone or a $2,000 trumpet they can start off on a three or four dollar trumpet on their phone and learn about how things are structured—the harmonics—and hopefully migrate to the real thing.”

“It’s been great,” said James Taylor, director of global business at Artist Works, an online learning platform for online music schools and academies. “This is our first year at NAMM. What we’ve found is that we have had very different audiences on each of the days. Initially it was about the new partnerships we were forming with manufacturers and dealers. And as the weekend went on a lot more education providers and teachers were coming to see what we were doing. As we’re entering a new phase in teaching using iPads and tablets, our product is coming onto the market at the right time.”

In addition, industry members interested in the newest developments from the recording, live sound, DJ, house of worship and stage and lighting industries participated in the broadest educational experience at the show’s Hands On Training (H.O.T.) Zone .

“The (H.O.T. Zone) session was great, very informative,” said Mike Morelli from The Upper Room in Elmira, Canada. “I’m going to go home and experiment. Four days is almost not enough, there’s so much here to see. I’m a musician, so I’ll go home and try and use the session aspects in my studio and what I’m doing and in my business too.”

For more information, photos, video and news updates from the 2011 NAMM Show, interested parties can visit http://www.namm.org/thenammshow/2011.

About NAMM

The National Association of Music Merchants, commonly called NAMM in reference to the organization’s popular NAMM trade shows, is the not-for-profit association that unifies, leads and strengthens the $17 billion global musical instruments and products industry. NAMM’s activities and programs are designed to promote music making to people of all ages. NAMM is comprised of more than 9,000 Member companies. For more information about NAMM, interested parties can visit www.namm.org or call 800-767-NAMM (6266).