NAMM 2022: The Final Countdown

It’s nearly time! With the opening of NAMM 2022 just days away, anticipation for the music technology, instrument and sound industry’s reigning trade-show is at an all time high. Let’s take a top-down look at the show and highlight some of the most noteworthy attractions in its comeback year. 

It’s going to be a hot one! For the first time ever, NAMM will take place in a sweltering June – an emphasis of the merging of both its summer and central winter shows into one very special kind of gathering. This spirit of bridging, communication and collaboration is certainly something that will be in the air this year, following the last few years of virtual meetings and long days typing away in solitude in our respective homes. The chance to get together with old friends and forge new relationships is always one of NAMM’s most alluring prospects, and this year it’ll be perhaps the show’s most central draw. 

NAMM 2022, as mentioned, will consolidate the summer show, typically held in Nashville’s Music City Center into the venerable winter show, long held at the Anaheim Convention Center into one convention. As President Joe Lamond told us recently, the watchwords of NAMM 2022 are both ‘transformation’ and ‘tradition’, yet the soon-to-be-former president of the organisation stressed that the effect of the pandemic still looms large over the upcoming show. “There’s going to be a big difference regarding the fact that it’s a different time of year, and the show is smaller. Some companies are demonstrating some amazing innovations, while others are just barely keeping up with supply chain issues and other macro economic issues. It’s a disruptive time. I think this show will illustrate how the show has changed and how disruptive things are right now. The people who are there are going to be the ones looking for those clues as to how the industry’s future will go.”


While we’ve had a lengthy conversation with Joe Lamond and surveyed several of the exhibitors coming to NAMM in 2022, there’s also a plethora of activities, seminars, education sessions, awards and industry events taking place. On Thursday (June 2nd), the day before Friday’s opening day, there will be a complete day packed with myriad activities and events, including the Retail innovation Summit and the all-important Top 100 Dealer Awards. This twelve-year-old award ceremony serves to honour independent dealers of all stripes, awarding those who excel at building communities via their stores, neighbourhoods and customers. This year, the action will take place in the Pacific Ballroom. 

Another vital fixture of NAMM, The TEC Awards, is also back for its 37th year. This time, being held on the Saturday. This NAMM institution promises to be a night of high spirits, remarkable live music performances and some of the industry’s outright luminaries in attendance. The TEC Awards is all about celebrating exemplary sound, be it in music recording, film, television, video games or live events. With categories encompassing 21 Technical Achievement and 7 Creative Achievement awards. Getting a prestigious gong here is a mark of uber-respect, particularly for those who received a hallowed Hall of Fame award, which underscores those names that have made a considerable impact on the world of pro audio.

NAMM Returns

The She Rocks Awards also make return this year. Established in 2012 by The Women’s International Music Network (WiMN) the She Rocks Awards recognise trailblazing women from across the industry, be they manufacturers, performers, engineers, producers and more. Taking place on June 2nd, the tenth year of the awards will certainly be special. “The She Rocks Awards originated as a breakfast during The NAMM Show a decade ago, and we continue to think of the show as our home.” Founder Laura B. Whitmore stated on, “I have always found it important to honour the women behind the scenes equally with the household names that have joined us over the years. It’s wonderful to continue to inspire and energise everyone who watches and attends the performances and speeches from these accomplished women.”

For the live sound world, the bespoke Parnelli Awards returns after its 2021 ‘gap year’, being held in the Pacific Ballroom on Friday. This 20th Parnelli Awards praises pioneers, pros and innovators in the live sound domain, encouraging connectivity and celebration. It’s often regarded as the live sector’s highest plaudit.


It’s not all about awards of course, throughout the course of NAMM 2022’s run, over 200 education sessions will take place, from seminars, lectures, summits and more, from free Dante certification training, sessions on event safety, career guidance, big-picture sessions on major topics currently concerning the music business and much more. Head over to the education page to find those sessions that you can fit into your plans. 


NAMM Education


Meanwhile, on the show floor, the throngs of exhibitors, buyers, distributors, press and influencers will be circulating around the numerous halls. While some have questioned the importance and future of trade shows in an increasingly digital world, for the likes of DJ giants Pioneer, NAMM has evolved beyond being a simple place to exhibit their latest tech. “The NAMM show expands beyond being *just* a trade show for Pioneer DJ. Instead, the show serves as a homecoming for artists, manufacturers and music lovers to gather and celebrate music innovation. Musical technology is obsolete if there isn’t a greater community to put said technology to use. NAMM will remain a core column in our industry as long as the music keeps playing.” Pioneer DJ tell us. 

Allen & Heath, the live console heavyweights, are planning on having their biggest presence ever at this year’s show, with not just new products on display, but extensive live sound console training offered and their systems deployed across NAMM, including at the NAMM Loudspeaker System Showcase. “NAMM 2022 is a great opportunity for us to show the true breadth of our product range in action.” A&A Marketing Director Jeff Hawley explains, “We’ll be in the Arena mixing the Loudspeaker Showcase with Avantis, at live events across the NAMM campus with SQ, and holding down the Arena Stage with a pair of dLive. We also outfit a training area with a classroom full of dLive and offer free training and certification classes. In addition to these key ‘in-situation’ product placements, we obviously value the chance to tell our brand story—in the booth and at special presentations like the TEC Tracks.”

Live music is an important part of NAMM


Another major innovation making its debut at this year’s show is NAMM Show+. This new interactive platform will be available worldwide, as well as to those attending the show on both mobile and desktop, and will seek to better connect brands, NAMM attendees and the outside world in a slick, modern way. Powered by Swapcard – the AI platform at the heart of last year’s Believe in Music week – this new show extension will allow new ways for brands to share with media, influencers and the general public. Every exhibiting brand will be able to enhance their show offering with virtual bolt-ons, upgrades and sponsorships. 

“With NAMM Show + you’ll be able to access the first true digital version of our show.” Joe Lamond told us, “[It] will not just make the show more effective, but for those who can’t come at all, there’ll be multiple streaming events from the show, from the education sessions or the entertainment. This is our first time welcoming so many people from around the world into the NAMM experience via NAMM Show +. We took what we learned and it’s now going to forever be part of our physical gatherings.”


Another facet of NAMM 2022 is the prevalence of near-constant live music. While inside the halls, the occasionally warring demonstrations of different drum kits, guitars, DJ decks and synths might get a little much, outside and at specific live music destinations across the show, you’ll be able to take some time out to bask in the exhilarating thrills of rock, rap, soul, funk, classical and numerous other genres of live music. Yamaha’s Grand Plaza stage is the pinnacle of the campus’s offering, while the ADJ Arena provides a more festival-feel. For the complete list of live venues see here. A top pick is inside the Marriott’s stage, providing music all day, you never know who might turn up!


NAMM Yamaha Live

NAMM 2022 is way more than just a tradeshow, or a place to do work, it’s one of the most holistic music experiences you can have, and the ultimate destination for those seeking to be engaged with the industry. Make sure you brush up on our recent NAMM guides ahead of your trip, and enjoy the show.