This Season’s Musical Must-Have Holiday Gifts Debut at Summer NAMM

Music retailers look to fill shelves for a robust fourth quarter with abundant gift ideas for the current and aspiring musician

June 12, 2013

Savvy retailers will be making holiday lists and checking them twice while previewing an abundant selection of trending and unique instruments, accessories, and other musical products on NAMM’s return to Nashville. Summer NAMM, held July 11-13 at Nashville’s new Music City Center, will feature items that holiday shoppers will be clamoring for in late fall, including gifts for aspiring musicians, portable instruments, accessories, and one-of-a-kind pieces for the musician who has it all, from more than 1,000 brands.

“Dealers who want a successful holiday selling season are planning for it right now,” said Joe Lamond, president and CEO of NAMM. “Having the hottest-selling merchandise and executing well-planned sales and promotions doesn’t just happen; it takes plenty of hard work and strategy. Stores attending Summer NAMM will return home prepared to win in the fourth quarter.”

Planning for the holiday season in July is a solid business move that has the approval of many retailers who make attending Summer NAMM their foremost maneuver in creating a holiday buzz. “Attending Summer NAMM, we make time to look at all the products being displayed – the new, unique, innovative and affordable merchandise,” said Jim DeStafney, owner of Blues Angel Music. “At holiday time, our customers are frequently looking for upscale versions of utility items, for example, fancier guitar straps or fancy instrument stands. My wife also looks for typical gift items, such as coffee cups, fancy shirts, music-related jewelry. Of course, we also look at seasonal print music,” he said.

New merchandise geared toward all levels of music making, and accessories that make music louder, more portable, personal, and fun will preview at Summer NAMM.

New Musicians
Items that delight and encourage the new musician are plentiful among manufacturers’ lines, emphasizing that learning to play is the best gift of all. From Hal Leonard comes two beginners’ packages that build on musical trends of recent years. The Celtic Cross Bodhrán gift pack and the Ukulele Starter Pack each features the instrument, instructional book, and DVD/CD. From Nick-a-Jack comes the Nickel Cigar Box Kit, which includes everything needed to build and play an electric, three-stringed, cigar-box guitar.

Novice musicians as well as accomplished players can find a place for smaller, travel-sized instruments appropriate for both new players, and for accomplished musicians who want to take their music on the road.  Portable options at Summer NAMM include Taylor Guitars’ GS Mini and Yamaha’s PSR-E343 keyboard.

For the true aficionado, accessories to augment their instrument arsenal are coveted and appreciated. GWW Cases features a line of semi-soft instrument cases that can be embroidered with initials or band logos, and customized with rigid internal features. Quilter Guitar Amplifiers offers its Aviator Series that bring true, vintage tube-amplifier tone to a lightweight portable model. Volume and Tone’s line of guitar straps project a personal image with studded, zippered, grommeted and punched-leather options.

For the Musician Who Has it All
If the gift of music is the gift that keeps on playing, then custom and luxury models are the ultimate gift for the musician who has (and plays) it all. Yamaha’s Bösendorfer Marquetry Series Model 200 SP ‘Hummingbirds’ grand piano is inspired by the artistry of 18th century Vienna and by the Austrian Habsburg imperial family’s affection for exotic images of nature. For the guitarist with a flair for theatrics, Garven Guitars offers custom, illuminated, acrylic modular hollow-body electric guitars that integrate custom graphics and illumination options. Finally, for the musician who yearns to play a true classic, Gibson 1934 Original Jumbo Acoustic Guitar is a handmade, vintage reissue of the Jumbo acoustic guitar made nearly 80 years ago.

Buyers filling their shelves for the holiday season can preview and play in person the must-have items in plenty of time to help customers fill loved ones’ holiday musical wishes.

Summer NAMM gathers members of the music product industry from around the world to preview new product debuts from brands across every category. Exhibit space is still available for the 2013 event. Learn more about the Summer NAMM Show here. See the directory of brands attending Summer NAMM: Beyond buying, summer’s the perfect time to lay out a solid holiday promotion strategies for a lucrative fourth quarter. On site, NAMM offers “How to Plan Holiday Promotions That Work” Thursday, July 11 at noon in the Idea Center

About NAMM

The National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) is the not-for-profit association with a mission to strengthen the $17 billion music products industry. NAMM is comprised of approximately 10,300 members located in 104 countries and regions. NAMM events and members fund The NAMM Foundation's efforts to promote the pleasures and benefits of music, and advance active participation in music making across the lifespan. For more information about NAMM, please visit, call 800.767.NAMM (6266) or follow the organization on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.