Sunday, June 22, 2008

Baby don't care about no Slash

We're home. Nashville has come and gone for another year.

This year, the whole family got to go. Even Lovely was able to switch a weekend around and come with us to the Gibson Summer Jam and NAMM show. It was awesome to all get to go together.

The NAMM show is a trade show for music dealers. Guitars, drums, keyboards, amps, accessories, everything you can think of that you might find in a Sam Ass or Guitar Center type store is represented. What you don't see are high end orchestral and symphonic type instruments or pianos there. It's not that kind of show.

It is the kind of show, however, where you can see what Baldwin has done to a piano now. It is hideous, grotesque, and ridiculous. I'm sure it sold on the first day. Pardon the crappy cell phone picture:

Gibson's Custom Shop hosts a party every summer, and if NAMM is in Nashville that year, they make sure that the two coincide. Gibson is a decent host, even if the party gets bigger and bigger every year, leaving it less personal and more smoky all the time. I've been three times now, and in just those three times, the focus has shifted from one of wining and dining their guests as a thank you for being Gibson supporters in the hopes that they will leave having purchased a couple more guitars to having the event be a marketing tool for them to the general public. This year, the t-shirts that they used to wrap up in fancy bags full of picks, stickers, and other goodies and give to us for free, they were selling for $20 each.

SWAG is a thing of the past at the Gibson Summer Jam. Guy was not a happy camper.

The BBQ dinner at a downtown Nashville restaurant we had with the other 30 or so people attending the Gibson week a few years ago? Turned into speed tacos under a tent with 300 other people.

It's just a different event now. A less fun event.

The first year I got to go, Peter Frampton showed up and played for less than 100 of us in the parking lot of the Custom Shop.

The next year, Guy and I had just gotten married and we saw Cheap Trick with about 200 people in the parking lot.

This year, it was Johnny Winter and Slash performing, there must have been 500 people there, and I left with Christopher by 8:00 PM and didn't hear a note of them. Here's what Christopher thought of the whole affair:

Yes, he truly did need the headphones. It was loud, but worse than that was the extreme highs and lows that were mixed in. Too much for a little one's ears. Here's a gratuitous shot of him before he passed out on my lap.

And just in case I thought I was being overprotective, here's a shot of him the next night when the music started, but I hadn't gotten his headphones on him yet.

Bless his little heart. He was totally happy once he got his phones on.

And yes, I thought judgmental parent thoughts of those parents letting their babies and toddlers get even closer to the speakers without hearing protection. I have crossed that line now. Granted, I didn't say anything, but I judged them in my mind. And now here too.

So that's where we've been. I've got some other not so interesting stories that I'll bore you with as the week goes on.

That ought to drive my readership up through the roof.