LOOK: This Filipina Has Met Your Biggest Music Heroes!
Cynthia San Juan
Editor's Note: Cynthia "Cindy" San Juan was as a writer-producer for MYX Philippines from 2002 to 2003, working alongside VJs Heart Evangelista, Ala Paredes and Luis Manzano before moving to the US. She has been part of Walt Disney Park and Resorts as a statistical specialist for the past 12 years.
I was one of the first producers for the 24-hour music channel MYX. When I decided to leave 15 years ago, of course, that meant leaving my dream job behind. I never looked back or had any regrets losing the exposure and connections I had with the music world. I live for music. It was my life.
I did a 180-degree on my career, opting for a 9 to 5 office job and actually loving it. But as fate would have it, I met someone who worked for NAMM, and attending the event (which is only by invitation) is more than I ever imagined it to be!
So what is NAMM?
NAMM: The National Association of Music Merchants. It’s an international trade show held yearly at the Anaheim Convention Center here in Anaheim, CA. It is literally right across the street from Disneyland. Vendors, exhibitors, and artists get together to network and check out the latest music instruments - musicians looking for endorsements, buyers making purchases for their businesses, and unsigned bands and artists taking the stage in hopes to be discovered (word has it that Taylor Swift played in a small booth when she was just starting out). There are about 2,000 exhibitors who show up from around the world.
Although NAMM is more of a corporate setting, exhibitors also need people to come visit their booths. So, what better way to get the attention of the general audience than to bring in the rockstars! The most fun part of NAMM is seeing your favorite artists walking around and just hanging out. Also, they have meet and greets and autograph signings… free of charge. The most interesting thing I observed at NAMM is they are way more personable and relaxed. Perhaps they feel safer in place that’s familiar to them, and yes, it’s a trade show. Gotta stay in their best behavior.
Here are a few of my favorite pictures I’ve taken in the last 7 years that I’ve been in attendance.
Corey Taylor of Slipknot
Billy Corgan of the Smashing Pumpkins
Vicki Peterson of The Bangles
Walk The Moon
Chad Smith of the Red Hot Chili Peppers (We saw him coming out of the mens room!)
Tre Cool of Green Day
AJ McLean of the Backstreet Boys
Jonathan Davis of Korn