Thanks to our friends at Armor Gold Cables, I was able to attend this year’s NAMM show with my brother Chris and nephew Bryan. It was great to see Stephen Simon. Armor Gold continues to be a huge supporter of The Nickel Slots, and we love their cables! The NAMM show celebrates all that is new for 2017 in the music industry as far as gear goes. This year’s NAMM was really special for me: not only did we celebrate my nephew’s birthday, but I also got to meet some of my favorite manufacturers in person.
I was finally able to speak with Robert Keeley. I own a couple of his pedals that just scream good tone! Robert is a genius in the world of guitar pedals!
It was great to see my pals at Reverend Guitars, Ken and Penny Haas. Along with Joe Naylor, Reverend continues to be a great supporter of The Nickel Slots. Their guitars kick ass! Reverend is celebrating their 20-year anniversary, check out their Double Agent Anniversary model! After exchanging some emails with the one and only Saul Koll of Koll Guitars, I was able to meet him in person and drop off some promised Nickel Slots CDs. Saul’s guitars are just about as cool as it gets! Representing the Sacramento area, it was great to see our Elk Grove buddy Doug Kauer from Kauer Guitars. Doug’s guitars are amazing and he continues to blow people away with his designs. This year he introduced the new Titan series guitars and I really want one with P90 pickups!
We ran into some pals from our hometown of Woodland including our old bandmate Bryce Gonzales, who now lives in Southern California and has his own company called Highland Dynamics. He builds a line of handmade compressors for recording. Bryce is doing great with his product line! And then we saw Bobby Miranda from Super D: Bobby was there with Floyd Rose Audio. It was great to catch up with Bobby!
I was really excited to visit the Zemaitis Guitars booth. If you look back at the early ’70s-era Stones you’ll see them playing guitars by Tony Zemaitis. I caught up with their artist representative Greg, who had offered me an artist endorsement. It was great to meet him in person and I am looking forward to acquiring my first Zemaitis guitar and playing it on The Nickel Slots’ fourth studio album when we start recording in March 2017.
So Chris, Bryan, and I are all Rancid fans, and we happened to be in the Fender booth minutes before Tim Armstrong took the acoustic stage to play his Fender signature acoustic guitar. He treated us all to a great set, we stood right in front of him and had the best time! He is one of the coolest musicians I have ever met! Here is the set list of what he played:
1. East Bay Night
2. Cretin Hop
3. The 11th Hour
4. Rockaway Beach
5. Ruby Soho
With that in mind, there are plenty of celebrity musicians walking around the event. Here is a list of who we saw:
- Jennifer Batten
- Rudy Sarzo
- Steve Vai
- Greg Bissonette
- Albert Lee
- Frank Gambale
- Alex Skolnick
- Floyd Rose
Looking forward to next year and hoping to play NAMM 2018 with The Nickel Slots!
Here are some photos!