The CLUAS Archive: 1998 - 2011

On a recent visit back home I was impressed by how many rural Irish businesses are travelling to China to buy or sell wares. Well, there'll be lots more foreign brands and musicians, at Music China, Asia’s leading event for the music products sector will bring together suppliers, distributors, dealers, musicians and artists from all over the world when it takes place from 9 – 12 October at the Shanghai New International Expo Centre. 1,100 exhibitors at the show will come from 22 countries and regions, and will include pavilions from Austria, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Taiwan and the UK. Some big name brands are coming to introduce their instruments to the Asian market – they want to sell, not necessarily manufacture here.
Period Piano will display a rare antique Pleyel piano – the kind preferred by Chopin - manufactured in Paris in 1839 and restored to full playing condition after being discovered in an old French chateau. Wealthy Chinese are invited to the company’s pavilioin to make “a sound exactly as Chopin himself would have played.”  German-based Warwick is inviting bassist TM Stevens to their stall to show off their “extremely limited edition’ Streamer LX LTD 2008 bass, a “beautiful and precise” instrument. Warwick will also show the newest version of the Framus Panthera model, the Panthera Classic Custom.
This year there'll be loads more drums at Music China. World-famous cymbal-maker Zildjian will show their new ReZoTM Crash cymbals, part of the Custom series that was developed with the assistance of legendary drummer Vinnie Colaiuta. Zildjian will also invite jazz drummer Bill Stewart to introduce its new cymbals. Another endorsee, the "innovative, cutting-edge" drummer Marco Minnemann will be performing on their stand throughout the show.
Sponsored by Remo, Music China will have a Drum Circle for the first time in 2008, allowing visitors to the show to get involved in music making, even if they’re not musicians. Facilitated by the talented Kumi Masunaga, a professional percussionist and drum tutor, the Drum Circle will take place in the outdoor area outside halls E5 and E6. People sit or stand in a circle and each are given a percussion instrument of some kind. The facilitator leads from the centre of the circle, and improvised rhythms are created; music is made in the moment. It is not a drum class and it is doesn’t follow any cultural-specific rhythms, it is completely free-form. Thus there is no audience – everyone is part of the performance!
Most useful for the export-minded Chinese instrument makers, US-based music trade body NAMM will return to Music China this year after two very successful sessions in 2006 and 2007. Betty Heywood, NAMM’s Director of International Affairs will moderate the sessions, which will include a big issue panels, a Chinese retailer forum and eight general seminars. Topics and speakers include:
“The Impact of Weakening Economies on the Global MI Industry” – panel discussion featuring Huang Weilin of Guangzhou Pearl River Piano, Jon Gold of Fender, Werner Husmann of Steinway & Sons, Joe Lamond of NAMM, Wu Hsieh of KHS, and Cheng Jian Tong of Roland. (In English & Chinese). “Survival and Development – A Closer Look at the Chinese MI Retail Business” – CMIA Retailer Forum, featuring Zhou Baoqing of Changchun Xinwei Piano, Huang Maoqiang of Sichuan Shengyin Music Co., Liu Weiming of Tianmu Music Co., Zhu Wenyu of Bestfriend Music Co., Zeng Zemin of Beijing Hsinghai Piano Group, and Zhou Wenhua of Gibson China. John Lee of Tom Lee Music will talk on the “Challenges and Opportunities for Musical Instrument Business in China Today” while there's another talk - “How to Tap Into the Leisure Market by Creating Musical and Cultural Activities in Your Community”  -by Mo Beiqian of QingdaoHaiyun Musical Instruments

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Nuggets from our archive

1999 - 'The eMusic Market', written by Gordon McConnell it focuses on how the internet could change the music industry. Boy was he on the money, years before any of us had heard of an iPod or of Napster.