Explore the history and innovation of American music products at The Museum of Making Music. Offering an unusual perspective, the museum showcases a side of the music industry where very little is known. The museum educates the public through films, private concerts, and workshops. There’s also an interactive area where visitors have the opportunity to create their own music.
On permanent display are hundreds of vintage instruments, audio and video clips, and a vibrant interactive area. Organized chronologically, each gallery features the historic milestones, popular music and instruments of those eras. Special exhibitions are presented twice a year with concurrent music presentations. Also, workshops highlighting renowned international and national musicians as well as local talent.
At the entrance to the Museum, you will notice the acronym “NAMM.” Those initials stand for the National Association of Music Merchants. The not-for-profit association that serves and strengthens the global music products industry.
The NAMM museum – the Museum of Making Music – is located on the first floor of the building. This also serves as NAMM’s international headquarters. Founded in 1998 and opened to the public in March 2000, the Museum celebrates the music products industry’s rich history from 1900 to today.
Music from the Sound Up: The Creative Tools of Synthesis
As the world became increasingly electrified in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, musicians and scientists began laying the foundations of “synthesis”—an entirely new way of building sound through electrical current. This also opened the door for the development of entirely new instruments. Although early instruments were limited to only a handful of sounds, each new development in synthesis brought new opportunities for expression and personalization. It soon became apparent that with synthesis, everyone could make their own sound.
This ethos of individuality continues to drive synthesizers today. It’s possible to build almost any sound you can imagine – including the sounds of traditional instruments – and play your sound in almost any way – with a piano keyboard, a guitar, a wind instrument, a smartphone app.