NAMM: it’s everything about the music industry, the new gear, the new toys, the Rock Stars, and the Legends. But what is it like to spend the day with a legendary Rock and Roll band that has stood the test of time? I had the opportunity to not only experience all that is NAMM, but to do it with Great White.
The day started with a signing at the Rock ‘N Roll Industries Magazine booth at NAMM. Great White, along with rising stars XNO (pronounced z-no) each had a one hour long meet and greet. Fans lined up to take pics and get autographs of the bands. Great White was beyond gracious to all those that came out to see them. This was testament to who they are as people; kind, talented, and epic Rock legends that still care about their fans. I say that because I saw first hand other performers leave a signing before they got to everyone in line. This was not a public event and NAMM is only open to music related exhibitors, endorsed musicians, and the media. When other artists snubbed their fans, they were snubbing their peers, sponsors, and members of the media.
Have you ever wondered what happens behind the scenes when you are hanging with a band like Great White at the biggest music convention on the planet? In one word: Business. Folks, that’s what happens. The bands go to check out new gear including everything from instruments to fog machines that are displayed and out for the talent to check out. Those who are endorsed stop by the companies that support them. The talent that is looking for endorsements make their pitches. While walking the floor with Great White, they mingled with those in the business they knew and made some new friends along the way, taking time with fans who stopped them to say hello or take a picture.
The Great White line up includes: Terry Ilous (vocals), Scott Snyder (bass), Mark Kendall (lead guitar), and Michael Lardie (rhythm guitar and keys) and Audie Desbrow (drums). I consider all the members legends. There are countless reasons why, but the important reasons include that they are still out performing live and making new music, while giving fans the show they would expect from such and epic band. Speaking of new music, Great White also dropped an album recently titled “Elation”. If you have not heard it I highly recommend it. It is rock and roll at the heart and has a few “dirty” blues selections. Great White also remains at the top of their game because they play for the love of the music, but also to their credit, “Hard to Say Goodbye” from their album Elation just hit the top 10 at number 9 on the Classic Rock Radio charts. The band will also be part of this years Monsters of Rock Cruise.
During the day I got to hear stories from the band about the band and about being Great White. Yet with all their fame and stardom, the guys stay quite humble and kind. Although I was along as personal paparazzi, I have to admit I was starstruck. I have been a fan of their music since I can remember, and on this day I was standing next to them taking pics, and just hanging with the band. The guys kept telling me that they were like anyone else, they put their pants on one leg at a time.
The day wrapped up and the guys said goodbye. I was honored to be part of NAMM and to do a day with Great White. I have to sum up the experience as NAMMtastic!!!
Written by: Melissa Anderson, http://www.ROCKwellUnScene.com
Photos by Rockwell Anderson Media (Wes & Melissa Anderson)