Wednesday, June 28, 2017
Preview Day - January 18, 2017
Paul Reed Smith, founder of PRS Guitars of Stevensville, Maryland, sat down with VK Lynne to discuss his company, what’s new for PRS in 2017, and female guitar players that are “schooling” the men.
Fender celebrated its 30th Anniversary of its Fender Custom Shop at the 2017 Winter NAMM Show with an evening with the master builders that have created the gorgeous instruments for some of the most iconic players in the world. 
The axe wielding guitar god is more often than not akin to Zeus coming down out of the sky with a thunderous fire and brimstone vengeance.  The thought of soft lace and flowers are usually not really associated with the aforementioned, but let me tell you what…I recently met someone at this year’s She Rocks Awards that made me rethink all that! 
New to NAMM this year at the Boutique Guitar Showcase area was custom guitar maker McSwain Guitars of Portland, Oregon. Founder, Head Designer and Luthier, Stephen McSwain, explained how he started his guitar business and his approach to building his custom guitars.
The mighty uke was again fully represented this year at NAMM by many manufacturers in all the usual shapes, sizes and gorgeous designs. Kala Brand Music was onsite at Media Day which is held the day before NAMM and is just a teaser into what will be shown at manufacturers’ booths during the NAMM Show. 
Known as the “Six String Siren” to her fans, after hearing Diana Rein play, I can certainly understand why. This singer-songwriter from Los Angeles performed at the D&A Guitar Gear Booth at the 2017 NAMM Show in Anaheim, CA and is their first female endorsed artist. With her strat in hand, a suitcase kick drum/tambourine, and her powerful vocals, she put on one heck of a “one woman” show.
Rising country music artist, Clare Dunn, was raised in a small Colorado town and grew up working on the family farm driving cattle and riding tractors which allowed this rising star to listen to a lot of music and dream all day of becoming a musician. To pay for college, Dunn drove 18-wheelers during her breaks. From all of this hard work and family commitment, she developed a deep and committed work ethic which has helped her along her musical journey.
Taylor Guitars introduced several new models for 2017 at the Winter NAMM Show in Anaheim, California last week and we’re especially excited about the new Academy Series and the GS Mini Bass. Master Guitar Builder Andy Powers chatted with us while at the show and said, “As guitar builders and musicians, one of the things that is important to us is we want people to be playing music. Music is way too important to leave it up to the professionals so we want people to be able to incorporate music making as part of their lifestyle. So we wanted to build instruments that would hopefully break down some of those barriers to entry.”