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June 6, 2019 1:05 PM

Sound Messe in Osaka 2019, Japan’s Largest Guitar, Amp and Ukulele Exhibition Market

Established as one of the largest exhibitions and markets for guitars and ukuleles in Japan, Sound Messe in Osaka Executive Committee organized 9th session on May 11 and 12 in Osaka. (photo left, the visitors making a long queue before the opening.)

Initiated in 2010 by acoustic guitar manufacturers, distributors and music retailers, it’s widely recognized among guitarists and guitar enthusiasts where they can experience unique and exciting gears and buy them on site. Sound Messe in Osaka has successfully expanded in the ensuing years both in terms of attendance figures and proceeds.

It added electric guitars and related products segment in 2014, and now attracts visitors from not only in Western Japan but also remote areas, and overseas exhibitors.
The total attendance this year reached a record 6,834 including exhibitors’ staff members. (It was 5,900 excluding exhibitors’ staff members) The music retailers participated in the market area sold 53 million yen worth of music gears compared with 66 million yen in 2018.(photos right, from top to bottom, The visitors experimenting coveted gears for sale at the market area, overseas luthiers are increasingly interested in taking part in the event year after year, Yamaha showcased the latest FG/FS Red Label Series guitars featuring a new bracing, Atmosfeel pickups and state-of-the-art technology, and the unique guitars built by young promising guitar builders who now study guitar making.)

Exhibitors included 76 acoustic guitar & ukulele manufacturers and luthiers, and 46 electric guitar manufacturers, and at the market area. In addition to the market place where 15 retail music stores offered them characteristic instruments, the organizer invited the visitors to attractive food court, caf?, FM COCOLO satellite studio, even a foot massage parlor and a golf pro shop from outside the industry.

A host of name guitarists also entertained the visitors with outstanding music performance and talk sessions. This year, they included such veterans as Hirokazu Ogura, Takashi Hamazaki, Tokio Uchida, Tetsuo Sakurai as well as Yoshie Kurasawa and Anna Takeuchl young popular artists, SATSUMA3042 renowned YouTuber. (photos below: D_DRIVE Demonstration at Roland booth. Boss Waza Tube Amp Expander was offered for experience, and SATSUMA3042, bottom enthralled the audience with his astonishing technique.)

Gakki Engine of Nippon, a group of 22 master guitar builders in Japan provided a series of talk sessions featuring luthiers of the members, a special exhibit of original guitars crafted by young promising guitar makers who now study guitar making at school. About 500 visitors cast a ballot on favorite gears on exhibit.

On the day before the official opening, the organizer staged Buyers Day for the industry, and 82 buyers from 44 music retailers including from Tokyo and Kyushu areas took part in search of unique and original gears.

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