Summer NAMM: The First Industry Gathering in Eighteen Months to Bring Friends and Colleagues Together in Nashville

NAMM U, TEC Tracks, and more return

June 14, 2021

In the first in-person event for the industry in eighteen months, Summer NAMM will return to Nashville, July 15-16, at Music City Center. The gathering, which will take place under the latest in health and safety protocols, will offer leading professional development sessions, member-focused events, and networking opportunities against the backdrop of new music and pro audio products from top brands providing connections, tools, and strategies to help reignite business. Summer NAMM will also welcome the Alliance of Independent Music Merchants (AIMM), the Event Safety Alliance (ESA), the Music Achievement Council, the National Association of School Music Dealers (NASMD), Retail Print Music Dealers Association (RPMDA), and Show Makers to the gathering in co-located yet socially distanced conferences and events.

Summer NAMM registration and housing is now open. To register, please visit /summer/2021/attend


NAMM U, TEC Tracks and More Return

Summer NAMM will offer members the tips, tools, and strategies to meet the demands of the post-pandemic world through NAMM U and TEC Tracks. In the new NAMM Event Center (booth 161), established and emerging professionals will have access to big, actionable ideas, new perspectives, and future-focused outlooks. Sessions will be presented by thought-leaders and experts transforming the industry to help members meet the challenges of today and position their businesses for the future.

Online Marketing Summit: Meeting the Challenges in A Post-Pandemic World

On Wednesday, July 14, best-selling author, digital marketing pioneer, award-winning marketing executive and entrepreneur Larry Bailin will offer a half-day immersive workshop on proven strategies, tactics and updates to prepare for what’s next in online marketing. The Online Marketing Summit will require pre-registration, here: /summer/2021/education/online-marketing-summit

Hot topics at NAMM U include “NewInnovations in School Music Retail,” featuring a panel of industry experts, including CJ Averwater, Amro Music, Robert Christie, A & G Central Music and Jeff Bertrand, Bertrand’s Music; "New Innovations in Store Events," a panel discussion moderated by DeDe Heid of Heid Music; and “Lessons Learned for the Next Pandemic,” presented by financial experts Alan Friedman and Daniel Jobe; and more.

Donovan Bankhead, President of Springfield Music, says that “If a music store made it through 2020, you were successful. But a smart retailer recognizes that we are getting ready to enter a new, challenging era with lots of opportunities for success—and some failures. The surest way to maximize those opportunities is to attend Summer NAMM. I know that the Springfield Music crew will be there, for sure.”

“Summer NAMM is about connecting and learning,” affirms Jeremy McQueary, President, Paige’s Music. “The show offers the opportunity to dive into sessions to learn what’s new and what’s working in music retail. It’s also a chance to exchange ideas with other industry professionals and continue to develop those relationships.”

The much-loved “Best in Show” will return on Friday, July 16. Hosted by Frank Alkyer, Publisher of Music Inc. and UpBeat Daily magazines, a panel of retail experts will reveal their winning picks and weigh in on why they chose particular products, sharing sales tips and customers for this gear.

TEC Tracks will harness a future-focused program to help professionals in the audio space meet the opportunities of today and to prepare for the future. Topics include “Live Sound Post-COVID: Interview With Blackbird’s John McBride” with Mark Frink, interviewing John McBride of Blackbird Studio and Blackbird Academy; “How Recording Studios Can Thrive Through Disruption” with Sean Giovanni, producer, engineer and owner of The Record Shop; “Cross-Cultural Issues and Solutions in the Music Industry” presented by Brian Hardgroove, Public Enemy, bassist and producer; and “The Future of Livestreaming” with StageIt’s Stephen White, Nick Whitehouse of Fireplay, and Peter Sotos from Epic Proportions Tour.

The Event Safety Alliance (ESA) and Show Makers will answer the big question of “What’s next for live events?” in a special session: “What Do We Do Now? COVID Safety Without Rules.” Presented by Steven Adelman, of Adelman Law Group, PLLCand vice president of the Event Safety Alliance the session will navigate the frequently updated CDC guidance, widely varying state and local rules, and the legal duty to behave reasonably under rapidly changing circumstances. The session is part of two-days of training presented by the ESA and Show Makers.

Additional details of NAMM U, TEC Tracks, and other professional development programming is now available online at/summer/2021/events/schedule. Programming information from the likes of Alliance of Independent Music Merchants (AIMM), the Event Safety Alliance (ESA) and Show Makers, the Music Achievement Council, the National Association of School Music Dealers (NASMD), Retail Print Music Dealers Association (RPMDA) can be found by visiting the respective websites.

Events and Networking

For many members, Summer NAMM marks the ideal pace and time of year to connect and engage in planning for the second half of the year: “Summer NAMM is one of my favorites and I’m really looking forward to reconnecting with all our industry friends and buddies… It is definitely where I want to be…” says Rosi Johnson, President/CEO of Mississippi Music.

Summer NAMM networking events and traditions, including the 37th TEC Awards nominations and the Top 100 Dealer Awards, will return. The annual Top 100 awards, which celebrate the spirit of the music retailer and applaud their accomplishments, resilience, and commitment to serving music makers in communities around the world, will take place in the evening on Thursday, July 15.

The American Eagle Awards return in the afternoon on Thursday, July 15 at the Summer NAMM Event Center and will recognize iconic a cappella group Take 6 and music educators across America for their extraordinary service during the pandemic. The honors are presented each year in recognition of long-term contributions to American musical culture, the idea of music education for all children, and the need to protect creators’ rights both locally and internationally.

The Smart Women in Music SWIM Meet will take place on Wednesday, July 14 in the late afternoon and NAMM Young Professionals will gather on Friday, July 16. Additional details, including time and location, will be available at

“The opportunity to gather to learn, support, and inspire each other is just what we all need – now more than ever,” shares Cindy Cook, Owner of The Candyman Strings & Things and a multiple Top 100 Dealer Award winner. “We are proud to be a part of Summer NAMM because we are stronger together, and the experience energizes, motivates, and encourages all of us to keep doing what we do: make lives better through music.”

Keeping the Industry Safe & Sound

To keep the industry family safe during the gathering, NAMM, in collaboration with Music City Center event contractors and other service providers, are adhering to a health and safety protocol which, in conjunction with the City of Nashville and the Nashville Health Department and local ordinances, will include new measures to ensure social distancing and property safety protocols. The Music City Center received the Global BioRisk Advisory Council STARTM Accreditation, the gold standard for implementing the most stringent practices for cleaning and infectious disease prevention. We invite you to read more about the Center’s Health and Safety protocols, the Nashville Good-to-Go, and NAMM’s Safe & Sound program here: /summer-2021/articles/namms-safe-and-sound-plan

Additional information on Summer NAMM, events, professional development, and highlights can be found by visiting

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.