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“People want to make music. We saw that, and I think we continue to see that”: NAMM CEO says he’s optimistic about the growing number of musicians

The next NAMM show is due to take place later this month.

NAMM Show 2020

Image: Daniel Knighton

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NAMM CEO John T. Mlynczak has explained why he is “optimistic” about growing numbers of budding musicians and the demand for music products across the globe.

The next NAMM event is due to take place soon, running between 25-28 January at the Anaheim Convention Center in California.

The music industry is a confusing landscape currently – there are likely more musicians releasing music than ever before, and the demand for musical instruments and gear is huge (partially due to the lockdowns imposed during the COVID-19 pandemic).

With that said, there have been large decreases in musical instrument imports to the UK, the rise in AI is causing mass concern for the future security of music industry jobs, and making money from streaming and touring is ever complex and difficult.

Despite such colossal shifts in our industry, Mlynczak – who became the new president and CEO of NAMM back in February 2023 – believes that the demand for music-related products and gear is a large positive, and something he remains hopeful about.

Speaking to Music Trades, Mlynczak states (via Ultimate Guitar): “Looking at people who are making music online – Ultimate Guitar and these community sites, people want to make music. We saw that, and I think we continue to see that. So, how do we capitalise on it? That’s our job; to gather the industry and figure [it] out.

“We will [host] a lot of education sessions at the NAMM Show that are focused on that. This generative AI hot topic – how does that help capture and create more music makers, and what innovative products are going to come out to capture music makers in that world?”

He later adds, “So I am very optimistic about the demand for music makers in the world. [The question is] how does that turn into demand for our member companies, whether in retail or manufacturing? Historically, we’ve always been reactive, but we’ve [also] always innovated and grown.”

Find out more about The NAMM Show.

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