Music charities join forces with renowned musicians at NAMM

By Laura Ferreiro

Members of No Doubt, Black Sabbath and The Eagles as well as Stevie Wonder and Brian Wilson recently descended on Anaheim, California for the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM).

This massive trade show features product debuts and demos by makers of guitars, keyboards, drums and other musical instruments including ukuleles and violins, as well as electronics and music gear. It’s appropriate that the show takes place at the Anaheim Convention Center right next door to Disneyland, because NAMM is like Disneyland for countless musicians who spent hours playing their dream instruments and geeking out with fellow gear-heads over the course of the four-day show.

What’s more, several music-related charities were on hand, getting the word out about their important work and encouraging musicians to get involved. At the MusiCares booth in the heart of the trade show, the staff informed musicians about the valuable assistance they provide people in the music community in times of need. MusiCares’ Brett Bryngelson explained that the non-profit is currently working to expand its network of healthcare providers that offer discounted services to musicians.

The Grammy-related charity is also gearing up for a massive tribute to Bruce Springsteen in Los Angeles this week, featuring performances by Neil Young, Mumford and Sons, Patti Smith, Elton John, Tom Morello and more to raise money for emergency financial assistance and addiction recovery programs it offers the music community.

H.E.A.R. was also on hand to educate NAMM-goers about preventing hearing loss and tinnitus among musicians and music fans. The non-profit’s mission is to raise awareness of the dangers of repeated exposure to excessive noise levels from music that can lead to permanent hearing loss and to teach people how to prevent it.

Meanwhile, right outside, the John Lennon Educational Tour Bus was parked offering tours to kids, musicians, and anyone interested in getting a glimpse of its state-of-the-art recording facilities. This non-profit mobile recording studio offers students the chance to write and record music with top-notch equipment and music professionals at no charge.

“We’re at NAMM to promote our idea and get musicians involved in supporting the bus,” engineer/producer Hans Ages told Music for Good. “It’s a free space where kids can be completely creative. It’s a ripe environment for inspiration!”

These were just a few of the great causes on hand at NAMM. Here’s hoping we see even more in the coming years!

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