Six industry experts shopped for the top products and services at Summer NAMM and delivered their picks during “Best in Show” at the final NAMM University breakfast session, held July 14.
The panelists presented more than 25 standout products and services from an impressive array of wares at this year’s convention. The experts discussed their choices in front of 314 attendees, focusing picks on four “Best in Show” categories:
Best in Show —
The best product or service that panelists saw at Summer NAMM
Company to Watch —
An exhibitor with trendsetting products or services
Gotta Stock It —
A product that retailers want to stock right now, if they haven’t already
Best Accessory or Add-on —
A great product from the small-goods arena
The panelists were:
Billy Cuthrell, Owner, Progressive Music Center, Raleigh, NC
Vincent Nemeth, Owner, U Rock Music Center, PA
Lisa Kirkwood, Co-owner, Discount Music of Jacksonville, Jacksonville, FL
Mike Guillot, Director of Purchasing, Mississippi Music, Hattiesburg, MS
Alan Friedman, Partner, Friedman, Kannenberg & Co., Farmington, CN
Donovan Bankhead, Vice President, Springfield Music, Springfield, MO
“Summer NAMM is a great show to find new companies, discover new gear for the holidays and really spend quality time checking out brands,” said Frank Alkyer, publisher of DownBeat, UpBeat Daily and Music Inc. magazines, as well as the session’s moderator. “Our panel this year did just that — they found gear that will make money for their stores.”
Fishman was selected as a "Company to Watch" by Lisa Kirkwood, co-owner of Discount Music of Jacksonville, FL. Ms. Kirkwood remarked, "I know they have over 30 years of experience, but they’re not stopping. They’re continually looking for new innovation, and this Fishman Triple Play is amazing. This little product hooks to your guitar and takes all the fun that the keyboard players have had for years, with different sounds and effects, and offers it to the guitar player."
Progressive Music Center owner Billy Cuthrell chose Fishman's forthcoming Loudbox Performer as the "Gotta Stock It" item from the show. "We have more and more students coming in playing acoustic guitar, but they are not playing their acoustic with an amp, said Mr. Cuthrell. "You don’t see a ton of acoustic packs that come with an amp, so these are great amps that sound good and are small enough to carry around. They are a great add-on accessory that you can have in your store and package for the student."
Fishman would like to thank all of the dealers, buyers, consumers and fellow music industry manufacturers who attended this year's Summer NAMM Show in Nashville!