Gretsch Family Generation Six Reflections . . .
Members of the Gretsch Family’s Generation Six reflect on their recent experiences in Nashville . . .
I’ve been married into the Gretsch family for almost four years now, so naturally I’ve heard about the Gretsch company, however Summer NAMM in Nashville was my first time being a part of the business team. It was a really fun experience!
I was in awe of the trade show floor, there were so many booths featuring a much wider range of musical products than I expected. Musical instruments of every variety from violins, wind instruments, pro audio equipment, and more. My favorite exhibit (apart from the Gretsch and Bigsby booth, of course) was the Freenotes Harmony Parks. They make permanent musical instruments for playgrounds, schools, rehab facilities, and other public places, encouraging musical education for all. This is particularly up my alley as a Recreation Therapist.
The show was very educational in addition to all of the fun we had. I particularly enjoyed the NAMM Young Professionals meeting where we heard the awesome story of Carter vintage guitars. I also got some one-on-one time with Grandpa Gretsch who told me more about the history of the Gretsch business and his own success story. I was truly impressed to see what kind of respect and admiration he received being around the show.
Between all the great fingerstyle music at CAAS, unique and interesting exhibits/education at NAMM, and all the other cool things Nashville had to offer, it’s no wonder we had a blast! I can’t wait to be a part of future shows.
My last time coming to summer NAMM was in 2012, and arriving at the show 5 years later, I was pleased to see it’s still an excellent event. The show had moved into the new convention center since then, so the facility was as top notch as the event.
Over the years I had somewhat bought into the mainstream media myth that the music industry is struggling, but was so pleased to see how wrong the media is. In addition to seeing all the people and exhibitors at the show, the point was driven home by a double session at the idea center with a panel of high-profile music industry executives, featuring our very own Fred Gretsch. Everyone had different perspectives on “The Future of the Guitar” as the panel was called, but the underlying theme was that the industry is booming!
The NAMM organizer did an excellent job offering a wide variety of presenters between the breakfast sessions, idea center, and various meeting halls around the show. The Coalition on Coalitions was an excellent forum that not only reminded me of the passion my grandparents have for promoting musical education, but also motivated me to do my part in advocating for the importance of music in school curriculums.
Being back at the show was a great experience, and reminded me of what I have been missing over the years. I’m always inspired by the passion my grandparents have for the business, and the tireless effort that they put into it. I hope to be a growing part of the team and their success going forward.
Howdy folks! I’m Abbey Gretsch, sixth generation family member of the Gretsch Company. Reflecting on my first Summer NAMM 2017 experience in Nashville, Tennessee, I wanted to share a couple of gems from my experience
Gem number one: History is something, but legacy is everything. Whether you’re a small business owner, musician or Gretsch enthusiast, it’s important to realize you play a part in the music industry’s legacy. Your part may sound like the sweet pickin’ of a Chet Atkins guitar or the turn of a radio dial. Regardless of the role, each is a strand in the chord, which holds the music industry together.
Gem number two: It’s not what you know, but who you know. The Gretsch family is proud to have many loyal friends. Brand ambassadors like Doyle Dykes who spend hours jammin’ out, because he loves “That Great Gretsch Sound”. The simple truth is our instruments are great, but the people who play them are what make them even greater. Our friends are the ones who inspire legacy (there’s that word again). They keep us advancing in quality as well as seeking new growth. Something we all could use more of.
Overall, I’m thankful for my time spent in Nashville, and I look forward to seeing our legacy and our community grow.
Thanks for a Great Gretsch Time in Music City USA!
Nashville, a.k.a. Music City USA, was host to both the Chet Atkins Appreciation Society Convention and the annual Summer NAMM Show earlier this month. Visitors to Nashville were not only treated to what’s new and exciting in the music products industry, but were also able to enjoy connecting (and communing) with Chet fans of all ages.
Two generations of the Gretsch family, as well as some close family friends, were able to attend both events this year. We’d like to take a moment to extend a collective thank-you to all the Gretsch fans and friends we met during our travels and stay in Nashville.
We invite you to stay tuned here, the all-new home of that Great Gretsch Sound, for reports from the show. We’re excited to share our experiences with you, the worldwide Gretsch community!
The Gretsch Family