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  • Craig's Friday at Musikmesse

    It’s Friday at Messe, and I’m baaaaack…with more Messe pix. Again, it was another day with lots of meetings and plotting, but I was able to break away and get some phun photos.

    But first, breaking news: The TC Group is about to be purchased by Behringer. Well, at least that’s the case if I overheard some people who’d had a few too many drinks talking in a bar (the lengths I go to in order to get scoops for Harmony Central! I had to have at least a couple of drinks so they wouldn’t suspect a spy was in their midst).

    More breaking news: Looks like I’ll be attending a major music event in Ibiza toward the end of May, where I was asked to be on a panel about integrating “live” instruments with electronic music (after all, I’ve done a lot of that). Gibson Brands will have a major presence there, there will be concerts, and maybe even a jam room. I can hardly wait! And I’ll be chronicling as much as possible for Harmony Central for a “you-are-there” vibe (and this time I have enough advance warning to bring my video gear).

    Now a few words about Muskimesse. I’ve been attending since the 80s, and the decline between last year and this year became ever more evident the more I walked around. Even the lighting hall, despite being an area of overall growth compared to the rest of Messe, seemed subdued. Next year, apparently the organizers are going to split the Pro Light & Sound exhibits and Musikmesse exhibits so they no longer overlap—I heard Monday-Wednesday for PL&S, Thursday-Sunday for Musikmesse with most (some? all?) of these being public days. I even heard there may be a date change to September, but that seems unlikely.

    No doubt about it, Musikmesse is ill, and I’m not sure what it will take to revive the patient. However these types of things have a remarkable ability to mutate and adapt in a highly Darwinian manner, so we’ll see what the future brings. Meanwhile, let’s get back to what’s cool.

    As usual, my day started at the Gibson Brands booth to see if anyone needed me for anything, but since they didn’t, this time I actually looked around to see what was up so I could take some photos before moving on to the rest of the show. And…there were two turntables! I guess vinyl is making a comeback, whether in the form of a USB output from TEAC or a more purist-type model from Onkyo.








    I also had a chance to look at some of the consumer electronics products. I really think I need to get some Bluetooth speakers.






    During public day, you’ll find a lot of bands playing at booths, and Gibson was no exception.






    And to top it all off, Tony Iommi from Black Sabbath did a signing session. You can just make out his head to the right of the Epiphone signage. Not only was the area immediately around him mobbed, but the people waiting in line stretched around the entire booth…and it’s a really big booth.



    Attached Files
    **********

    "Look at it this way: think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of 'em are stupider than that."

    - George Carlin

    "It shouldn't be expected that people are necessarily doing what they appear to be doing on records."

    - Sir George Martin, All You Need Is Ears

    "The music business will be revitalized by musicians, not the labels or Live Nation. When the musicians decide to put music first, instead of money, the public will flock to the fruits and the scene will be healthy again."

    - Bob Lefsetz, The Lefsetz Letter

  • #2
    Okay, enough Gibson…time to move on, through the secret shortcut caused by Hall 4.0’s downsizing. Yes, this used to be filled with exhibits in previous years…but it does prove that the Messe is made from Lego blocks.





    I went over to Hall 3.1, which is apparently inhabited by a race of giant musicians. Here are examples of the types of metronomes and guitars these giants play.




    Attached Files
    Last edited by Phil O'Keefe; 04-17-2015, 06:50 PM.
    **********

    "Look at it this way: think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of 'em are stupider than that."

    - George Carlin

    "It shouldn't be expected that people are necessarily doing what they appear to be doing on records."

    - Sir George Martin, All You Need Is Ears

    "The music business will be revitalized by musicians, not the labels or Live Nation. When the musicians decide to put music first, instead of money, the public will flock to the fruits and the scene will be healthy again."

    - Bob Lefsetz, The Lefsetz Letter

    Comment


    • #3
      Next up, how many times have you thought to yourself “Ocarinas don’t get any respect. There should be a place that does nothing but all ocarinas, all the time!” Come to Messe, and your dream will come true.




      Attached Files
      **********

      "Look at it this way: think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of 'em are stupider than that."

      - George Carlin

      "It shouldn't be expected that people are necessarily doing what they appear to be doing on records."

      - Sir George Martin, All You Need Is Ears

      "The music business will be revitalized by musicians, not the labels or Live Nation. When the musicians decide to put music first, instead of money, the public will flock to the fruits and the scene will be healthy again."

      - Bob Lefsetz, The Lefsetz Letter

      Comment


      • #4
        And of course, I know at least 85% of the people reading this thread are hardcore accordion players. As Reek Havok once said in NAMM’s drum hall, “I can never hear too many drums playing at once”—and at Frankfurt, accordion aficionados can get their fill of accordion music. Check out these babies!





























        Attached Files
        **********

        "Look at it this way: think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of 'em are stupider than that."

        - George Carlin

        "It shouldn't be expected that people are necessarily doing what they appear to be doing on records."

        - Sir George Martin, All You Need Is Ears

        "The music business will be revitalized by musicians, not the labels or Live Nation. When the musicians decide to put music first, instead of money, the public will flock to the fruits and the scene will be healthy again."

        - Bob Lefsetz, The Lefsetz Letter

        Comment


        • #5
          It’s time to leave the melodious cacophony of a thousand accordions playing simultaneously and head over to Eye Candy Theater, also known as the lighting exhibits. After that, we’ll move on over to Yamaha-land.






          If you spend a lot of time in upscale dance clubs, you’ll see some pretty amazing light shows. If this stuff had been around in the 60s, the world would have lost its mind even more than it did. Feast your eyes on a bunch o’ fun pix…













          Attached Files
          **********

          "Look at it this way: think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of 'em are stupider than that."

          - George Carlin

          "It shouldn't be expected that people are necessarily doing what they appear to be doing on records."

          - Sir George Martin, All You Need Is Ears

          "The music business will be revitalized by musicians, not the labels or Live Nation. When the musicians decide to put music first, instead of money, the public will flock to the fruits and the scene will be healthy again."

          - Bob Lefsetz, The Lefsetz Letter

          Comment


          • #6
            How about some lasers?























            Attached Files
            **********

            "Look at it this way: think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of 'em are stupider than that."

            - George Carlin

            "It shouldn't be expected that people are necessarily doing what they appear to be doing on records."

            - Sir George Martin, All You Need Is Ears

            "The music business will be revitalized by musicians, not the labels or Live Nation. When the musicians decide to put music first, instead of money, the public will flock to the fruits and the scene will be healthy again."

            - Bob Lefsetz, The Lefsetz Letter

            Comment


            • #7
              And here we have Living Water. This does not mean it rises up and converses with you, but rather, the fountains change color and intensity based on the music.





              I have no idea what this is, but it looked cool so I shot some pictures.












              Attached Files
              **********

              "Look at it this way: think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of 'em are stupider than that."

              - George Carlin

              "It shouldn't be expected that people are necessarily doing what they appear to be doing on records."

              - Sir George Martin, All You Need Is Ears

              "The music business will be revitalized by musicians, not the labels or Live Nation. When the musicians decide to put music first, instead of money, the public will flock to the fruits and the scene will be healthy again."

              - Bob Lefsetz, The Lefsetz Letter

              Comment


              • #8
                I want this in my living room so it will attract alien civilizations. They’ll think it’s a runway.






                Don’t ask.






                At first, I was concerned that fracking was occurring at Messe, and the water was catching on fire by itself. Nope, this is actually a fountain that shoots water and flame. It’s a perfect visual background to James Taylor singing “I’ve seen fire, and I’ve seen rain.”




                Attached Files
                **********

                "Look at it this way: think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of 'em are stupider than that."

                - George Carlin

                "It shouldn't be expected that people are necessarily doing what they appear to be doing on records."

                - Sir George Martin, All You Need Is Ears

                "The music business will be revitalized by musicians, not the labels or Live Nation. When the musicians decide to put music first, instead of money, the public will flock to the fruits and the scene will be healthy again."

                - Bob Lefsetz, The Lefsetz Letter

                Comment


                • #9
                  ROBE! ROBE! ROBE! Couldn’t overlook the name of this company.














                  Whatever this is, I want it.





                  Attached Files
                  **********

                  "Look at it this way: think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of 'em are stupider than that."

                  - George Carlin

                  "It shouldn't be expected that people are necessarily doing what they appear to be doing on records."

                  - Sir George Martin, All You Need Is Ears

                  "The music business will be revitalized by musicians, not the labels or Live Nation. When the musicians decide to put music first, instead of money, the public will flock to the fruits and the scene will be healthy again."

                  - Bob Lefsetz, The Lefsetz Letter

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Yamaha has an entire area called the Forum all to itself. The first thing I noticed was some more THR-series amps. They’re cute, loud, and sound good. No wonder people love them.










                    Yamaha let people play the electronic drums, but not the acoustic ones. To say I approve would be putting it mildly.





                    Attached Files
                    **********

                    "Look at it this way: think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of 'em are stupider than that."

                    - George Carlin

                    "It shouldn't be expected that people are necessarily doing what they appear to be doing on records."

                    - Sir George Martin, All You Need Is Ears

                    "The music business will be revitalized by musicians, not the labels or Live Nation. When the musicians decide to put music first, instead of money, the public will flock to the fruits and the scene will be healthy again."

                    - Bob Lefsetz, The Lefsetz Letter

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      The usual way cool synth museum exhibit wasn’t at Messe this year, so I guess Yamaha decided to take matters into their own hands and create their own synthesizer museum. And well they might…here’s some serious synthesizer history.

                      The Yamaha DX7 II FD. Sure, the DX7 was overused but that’s because it was a great synth that changed the industry. This was a later model.





                      A true oldie but goodie (rare, too): The 40M Programmable Memory Synthesizer.





                      The mighty CS-80. No, you can’t really find them, nor would you want to lift them…but Arturia’s emulation is quite convincing.





                      I don’t feel Yamaha’s DX5 ever really got the attention it deserved, but it’s getting some attention here.






                      The ultra-rare, almost legendary DX1. Doubts about whether there really was such a synthesizer have been around for years, but this picture is proof positive that it existed.





                      If I recall correctly, the VL1 was one of the first, if not the first, modeling synthesizers. Yamaha did a lot more than just FM.




                      Attached Files
                      **********

                      "Look at it this way: think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of 'em are stupider than that."

                      - George Carlin

                      "It shouldn't be expected that people are necessarily doing what they appear to be doing on records."

                      - Sir George Martin, All You Need Is Ears

                      "The music business will be revitalized by musicians, not the labels or Live Nation. When the musicians decide to put music first, instead of money, the public will flock to the fruits and the scene will be healthy again."

                      - Bob Lefsetz, The Lefsetz Letter

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Back to the present…here’s the XF7, in its all-white designer casing. Put this next to a Korg M3, and you’ll need sunglasses.






                        Here’s the MOXF6/8, another recent offering from Yamaha.





                        Attached Files
                        **********

                        "Look at it this way: think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of 'em are stupider than that."

                        - George Carlin

                        "It shouldn't be expected that people are necessarily doing what they appear to be doing on records."

                        - Sir George Martin, All You Need Is Ears

                        "The music business will be revitalized by musicians, not the labels or Live Nation. When the musicians decide to put music first, instead of money, the public will flock to the fruits and the scene will be healthy again."

                        - Bob Lefsetz, The Lefsetz Letter

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          The Line 6 “booth within a booth.”





                          A gaggle of Variaxes.






                          This is the Line 6 Firehawk FX pedal. It has over 200 amps and effects, but the big deal here is Bluetooth parameter control for both iOS and Android. And yes, it has a VDI input for Variax guitars.





                          Attached Files
                          **********

                          "Look at it this way: think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of 'em are stupider than that."

                          - George Carlin

                          "It shouldn't be expected that people are necessarily doing what they appear to be doing on records."

                          - Sir George Martin, All You Need Is Ears

                          "The music business will be revitalized by musicians, not the labels or Live Nation. When the musicians decide to put music first, instead of money, the public will flock to the fruits and the scene will be healthy again."

                          - Bob Lefsetz, The Lefsetz Letter

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Step outside, and there’s another band. Musikmesse can get pretty loud, even if you’re outside.





                            Kemper had a trailer parked outside Messe. They didn’t really have anything new since NAMM, but since everyone loves the Kemper profiler, I felt I should at least include a photo of the Airstream in action.






                            Hey, remember that PreSonus thing under a black cloth in the first day’s set of photos? Well, here’s the big reveal: it’s the CS18AI, with touch-sensitive moving faders, and the ability to control up to 64 channels of StudioLive AI modules. It also has Ethernet/AVB compatibility, Fat Channel DSP control, and for Q3, will serve as a control surface for Studio One.





                            PreSonus also showed the Studio 192 USB 3.0 audio interface with remote-controllable mic preamps, Fat Channel processing on every analog input, Studio One integration, and backward compatibility with USB 2.0.





                            I guess that’s enough for one day, particularly since I keep falling asleep while typing. But I’ll back for the final day of Messe on Saturday, and yes, I will have info on the new Roland guitar synth that doesn’t need a hex pickup.


                            Attached Files
                            **********

                            "Look at it this way: think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of 'em are stupider than that."

                            - George Carlin

                            "It shouldn't be expected that people are necessarily doing what they appear to be doing on records."

                            - Sir George Martin, All You Need Is Ears

                            "The music business will be revitalized by musicians, not the labels or Live Nation. When the musicians decide to put music first, instead of money, the public will flock to the fruits and the scene will be healthy again."

                            - Bob Lefsetz, The Lefsetz Letter

                            Comment













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