2018 Musikmesse debrief: less show, more business

Still on the ICE train that brings me back from Frankfurt to Paris, I'm starting this article to debrief this 2018 edition of the Musikmesse. For those who do not know yet, the Musikmesse is a huge show gathering professionals of musical instruments and sound industry. This is not quite an event as major as in the past but it is still an important event.


2010 was the first year that The Guitar Channel came to Frankfurt. At that time just about every major brand was present: Fender, Gibson, Marshall, Orange, Taylor, PRS, etc. The booths were huge and included very often full scenes where famous musicians did demos, not to mention the huge stages in the middle of the exhibition grounds where the concerts were going on all day.

In short, all that is very far. The major brands mentioned above no longer make the trip to Germany.

Nevertheless, paradoxically, from a strictly business point of view, it is more interesting now than at the time. There is less show, but more business.

Vlog - Day 1 - Wednesday 11/04/18

To make you live from the inside the Musikmesse, I video-blogged during my stay with a Sony HDR AS-200V camera which has the good taste to give a good quality image and to have a correct sound when one cause not too far from the lens.

This is the first day:

Vlog - Day 2 - Thursday 12/04/18

Thursday was my second and last day there. Here is the video report:

Photo album

One of the entries of the Messe:

Musikmesse 2018 - The debrief: less show, more business!

Very nice colors at Godin, this singlecut at the bottom right of the image has caught me in the eye with this beautiful table and its Gold Foil pickups:

2018 Musikmesse debrief: less show, more business - Godin Guitars

2018 Musikmesse debrief: less show, more business - Godin Guitars

One of the good surprises of this Musikmesse, attend a masterclass of Mattias Eklundh:

The guitar shop No1 Guitar Center presented beautiful vintage guitars:

There were also scary guitars:

And guitars of a more than doubtful taste ...:

At Joyo, a kid was playing Steve Vai's "For The Love Of God" without flinching:


I am still puzzled when I see how much my friends and colleagues from the print media and the Internet are no longer traveling to Musikmesse. Again this year, I have seen how my two-day trip has been rich in meetings and promising appointments in interesting projects for the future. So yes, a few years ago, I brought back full interviews of guitar stars, this is no longer the case. But there is the NAMM for that so no problem. On the other hand on the business side, full schedule for The Guitar Channel. So as we say: Their Loss, My Win!

Nevertheless I hope that the Musikmesse organization will find the right formula to revive this show because it would be a shame that it disappears completely.

From a strictly financial point of view, this trip to the Musikmesse 2018 cost me around € 250 (train ticket, AirBnB night and meals included). For the good dozen appointments that I was able to have and the conversations in the aisles, it's well worth it.

So see you next year without fail!

Pierre Journel.

Into guitars?

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