Day 1 with Tom at Music China 2009 in Shanghai

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This is my first blog from Music China 2009 in Shanghai. Due to internet connection issues in China, I was not able to blog in real time. Interestingly, I could log onto my email server, but not connect with WordPress, Facebook, or Myspace. So, please note that the tradeshow took place last week.

After leaving Bellingham at 9:00a.on Saturday, I stepped into my hotel room Sunday night 10:00p. It felt good to arrive. I was ok with losing a day as I knew I got it back on my return trip, departing at noon on Saturday and, presto, arriving at noon on Saturday on the other side of the world.

My first impression was thinking they gave me a room with no power. My lack of intentional travel showing, I had to be shown that you stick you room key in a handy little slot to get power. Brilliant power saving idea (no lights or tv left on when gone) and a handy place to store your room key. 

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Soon enough I was off  to the first day of the show. Theo would not be joining me today. One of his flights got delayed, stranding him in San Fransico for a night and leaving him with a plethora of airline communications to make sure he does ultimately arrive. I sent him my prayers.

As I traveled for 20 minutes to the show on Tuesday morning in a small taxi, I felt very vulnerable. Traffic was nuts. Walkers, bikers, mopeds, cars, and buses all seemed to believe they had the right away…lol. All drivers were in a continuous state of honking and dodging. Most bikers did not wear helmets and moved through the street with a confidence of their well being that I did not understand. I was in the back seat of the taxi. As I frantically fought to get my seat belt working, I asked the driver if the belt worked. He laughed and then moved on to honking and dodging our  way to the show. Note to self, always get in front seat where seat belts work.

Shanghai is enormous. No end in sight. But, I’m sure some of that had to do with a bit of smog. But, my guess is even without smog, there is probably still no end in sight. Half the city seems to be under repair or new construction.

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I did make it to the show safe and sound.

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Here is a shot looking out away from the entrance of the show.

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In I go, and, caboom, mayhem.  But, I’m soon pleasantly surprised on how well organized it was and how quickly I was able to process my pre-registered ticket. Wow, 15 minutes and I was ready.

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Once past the registration area, the size of show unfolds. It is massive in space. It is like an airport with huge buildings to either side and a massive open area in the middle. This picture looks down one side of the buildings. Note the two transports. It is long walk from side to side. 

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Looking across to more exhibit halls on the other side:

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My first stop was Nadir from PMS Musik. He is truly a wonderful individual and had our mouthpieces on display at his booth. He has been at Music China for four years now. Thanks for all your support  Nadir!

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I then walked through most of the instruments side of the show to get my bearings. The Asian element in instruments was large. I loved it.

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Some booths, of course are quite grand.

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I met local professional artist Alec Haavik. He moved to Shanghai four years ago from New York. He loves the city. I enjoyed listening to a copy of his album, Friction Five, that he gave me.

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All over the show, there are battling performances for attendees’ attention.

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With Paul Haar’s (JazzTimes magazine) comparison of us to Steinway & Sons, I thought I would take a snap shot of Steinway’s amazing booth, hold it up high, and set a goal to someday have a booth as beautiful as theirs.

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More to come!
Warm wishes,
Tom

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