More than 100,000 people came through the Anaheim Convention Center for the annual NAMM (National Association of Music Merchants) conference, which took place on Jan. 18 through 22.
Gear lovers, including Stevie Wonder and John Mayer, came to check out the newest in instruments, technology and more.
In 2017, you can’t have a music conference without virtual reality. Some of the longest lines on the trade floor were not fans waiting to see a celebrity, but industry-ites wanting to check out the latest in VR technology, like this showcase by Dysonics of improved VR audio.
NAMM attracts gearheads like John Mayer, whose appearance Friday at Paul Reid Smith caused mosh pit-like conditions. Fans clamored into the exhibit room to see the guitarist and singer strum on PRS guitars and talk about his new EP on the day of its release.
One-time New York Yankees center fielder-turned-accomplished jazz musician Bernie Williams (right) leads a different type of all-star team for music education on the second night of the NAMM Conference in Anaheim. There is music everywhere at the conference -- in the outdoor courtyards, the neighboring Hilton hotel and in ballrooms like this one.
Megadeath guitarist Marty Friedman flashes the peace sign in front of a banner celebrating icons of metal, including Rainbow’s Ritchie Blackmore and Kiss’ Paul Stanley. Friedman was on hand celebrating the release of his new ENGL Inferno Signature 100 Head.
NAMM’s Everything from DJ culture and jazz to drums and keys, but as seen in this shot, the guitar still rules as attendees flock to displays from premiere guitar companies like Martin, Rickenbacker, Gibson, Fender, Paul Reid Smith and many more.
A conference attendee named Wayne play keys as onlookers walk past. Two floors packed with thousands of musical instruments ensure there are free jam sessions everywhere.
Ministry represents at NAMM. See here: frontman Al Jourgensen sucking on a lollipop before hundreds of autograph seekers file in.
Some very excited attendees wait patiently in the front of the Paul Reid Smith room for John Mayer to make an appearance.
Another look at Bernie Williams onstage Friday night at the Hilton Anaheim California Ballroom, where the show was moved to at the last minute due to the heavy rains Friday.
Guitar icon Steve Vai is a huge draw at NAMM, where fans, media and aspiring guitarists line up for an opportunity to ask questions, talk gear or pick up sage words of wisdom on how to make it in music.
Music fills every inch of space at NAMM, including hotel ballrooms, conference rooms and outdoor stages.
Dave Pensado, Herb Trawick & Butch Vig
Garbage member and iconic producer Butch Vig (right) speaks in the “Pensado's Place” booth, an exhibit from the popular internet TV series where hosts Dave Pensado (left) and Herb Trawick (center) talk all things audio.
Former Nevermore guitarist Jeff Loomis is pictured at the Schecter booth as he prepares to meet fans.
Anaheim Convention Center
An overhead view of the thousands walking through the Anaheim Convention Center. At times, the conference feels like a gear and technology version of Comic Con.
Martin Shore, Jerry Harrison & Steve Baltin
Billboard contributor Steve Baltin (right) speaks with Talking Heads member Jerry Harrison (center) and director Martin Shore (left) during the Take Me To The River panel, a look back at the 2014 film celebrating the Memphis music scene. During the talk, Short and Harrison, who co-wrote and produced the film, announced a 2017 Take Me To The River tour and a 2018 sequel set amidst the New Orleans music community.