Music industry offers a sneak peek at some new toys
Stars and Stripes March 31, 2006
FRANKFURT, Germany — Anyone who wants to learn more about the music business has a sound opportunity Saturday to get a behind-the-scenes glimpse at an industry that occupies center stage in our culture.
Billed as the world’s largest trade show for musical instruments, sound and lighting equipment, and all sorts of related accessories, the 2006 Frankfurt Musikmesse ends Saturday after a four-day run. While the first three days were focused on industry insiders, Saturday is the day set aside for the public.
“They say it’s a noisy day,” Mike Truscott, a sales manager in the United Kingdom for Pearl drums, said in anticipation of Saturday’s crowds.
There are more than 1,500 exhibitors from 50 countries at this year’s show, according to organizers. Exhibitors range from companies that sell stage lights, speakers and microphones to those dealing in music software, computer hardware and sheet music.
One of the highlights Saturday will be the appearance of Ian Paice, a founding member of Deep Purple who has also joined forces with the likes of Paul McCartney and Whitesnake. Paice performs at 11:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. at the Pro Lounge in front of Hall 8. At 3 p.m., he will be signing autographs on the first floor of Hall 4. Look for HK Audio (at locale Hall 4.1, D31).
Another attraction will be a drawing for a Les Paul Goddess guitar, a 2006 model that will be given away at 3 p.m. However, the winner must be present, said Jan Garich, a spokesman for Gibson, which has its display on the second floor of Hall 4.
The Gibson booth is one of the show’s more popular attractions.
“They all come to see what they can’t afford,” Garich said. “For many, it’s a lifelong dream” to own a Gibson guitar.
There is also a special area for youngsters, age 8 to 14, called “music4kids.” Located in front of the Festhalle, it is intended to develop children’s interest in music.
The exhibition is open to the public from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday. Tickets cost 21 euros apiece, or about $25. The student and per-person group rate (for more than 25 people) is 12 euros, while children, ages 6 to 12 years, pay 7 euros. A family ticket costs 25 euros.
For more details on the fair and a map showing the location of exhibits, visit: http://musik.messefrankfurt.com/global/en.