Live from NAMM, Part 1 | January 15, 2011 Now halfway through the show, and I feel as if I’ve only seen a fraction of what’s new! Lots in the world of featherweight, Class D amp heads, tons of cool new basses, a few new strings, effects, and accessories. I’m eager to get back out on the floor, so I’ll keep this brief…. Ampeg has lots of cool new amps. The big news is of course the Heritage B-15, which we first saw at Bass Player LIVE! Look out for the March issue of BP for the full story behind that amp. There was also a new line of Portaflex heads and cabinets. Like a solid-state B-15, the PF-350 and PF-500 are compact, lightweight heads that fold into 2x10 and 1x15 cabinets. Very cool. My first order of business today is to head over to Ashdown, who I understand has what they are hoping is a B-15 killer. The all-tube 30-watt Droptop Little Bastard 30—in name alone—sounds pretty rad. Fodera unveiled its new Yin Yang Standard, a more affordable take on the bass made famous by Victor Wooten. Victor was on hand to check it out, and of course made it sound amazing. Fender has a few new things: the 60th Anniversary Precision Bass is a classy little blonde number that combines elements of various P-Bass models through the years. Played and sounded beautiful. Fender Bass Amplification has also come out with two new super-light heads and cabinets, the Rumble 150 and the Rumble 350. Finally got a chance to check out the new tapewound strings from D’Addario. Worth the wait—the polished string finish doesn’t feel as tacky as other tapewounds I’ve played, and D’Addario has gauged them such that they are light enough to fit a typical bass without having to widen the nut. Also tried D’Addario new XLT Reds, which feature a copper outer wrap. Gives an electric a very snappy, ABG-like quality. Can’t wait to get them and do a full review. Alright, gonna leave it at that for now. Later today I’ll post some other goodies from the show—if I don’t get trampled underfoot by all the traffic!