Avenged Sevenfold, Megadeth and Slayer Appear at National Music Convention
The 2014 NAMM (National Association of Music Merchants) convention just wrapped up in Anaheim, Calif., but no doubt its effects will be ringing in the ears of many for weeks.
There is simply nothing like NAMM. Over 5,000 brands on display. Panels, exhibits, concerts and many surprises. Whether you're a manufacturer, musician or anything in between, NAMM is the ultimate musical playground. It caters to gear heads and tech heads alike, but a lot of the NAMM magic has to do with just who might run into.
After all, everyone there is a fan of music and so it's fun, no matter who you are, to keep your eyes open. And for fans of hard rock and metal, things can get interesting really fast.
Loudwire did a lot of wandering at NAMM, checking out the booths, watching demonstrations and of course doing a lot of people watching.
And like we said, as much fun and as amazing as the entire show is, we really enjoyed spontaneously bumping into some of our favorite artists.
We saw Dave Ellefson from Megadeth at the Jackson booth, where some of his signature bases were on display. He told us, "As exhausting as this amazing convention can be, it really is a great chance to catch up with people. Everyone's always touring all around the world but when it comes to NAMM, most everybody is here so it's like a homecoming every January."
Then there was George Lynch who was hanging out with the guys in his new version of Lynch Mob, who kick off the West Coast tour next month. The famed shredder is one of the most regular and recognizable faces at the show each year and while he can't walk two steps without getting stopped for an autograph, he says he'll just keep coming back.
“It's a little weird sometimes and certainly gets a little crazy trying to get from point A to point B but it's definitely worth it, being here. It's about as exhausting as it can get, but hey, this is what we do. This is part of the business and it's a great chance to see old friends.”
Then there was Jacob Bunton and Lonny Paul, formerly of Adler, and now with Lynam. They were there to tell people about the terrific new album 'Halfway to Hell,' while of course also making time to see some gear and old friends.
The booth signings are with things can really get crazy, especially when Synyster Gates and Johnny Christ from Avenged Sevenfold stop in for an afternoon as they did at the Schecter Guitars booth. This is what the fans in attendance truly seem to relish, a chance to spend a cherished moment with their musical heroes.
Rock goddess and guitar player extraordinaire Orianthi told us that she relishes the chance to meet a lot of fans at the show and play for them in small and intimate settings. “I certainly love seeing so many friends at NAMM," she explains, "but it's also a chance for me to speak with fans. I like signing autographs and taking photos. It's just what I would've done if I could've with my favorite musicians.”
Perhaps the most low-key star we saw hanging out was Andy Biersack from Black Veil Brides. Not signing or making appearances, the BVB frontman was instead just taking it easy and taking in the NAMM craziness on his own time and terms.
That's the key if you're ever lucky enough to attend the NAMM convention. Keep your eyes open and by all means keep a camera handy. You just never know who you'll run into.
Exclusive Photos From the 2014 NAMM Convention: