CanJam SoCal 2015 Introduction

The photo above is my favorite of the show. It's a wonderful illustration of what's so great about a CanJam and headphone enthusiast community at large. "How could this be?" you might say, "She's the exact opposite of the typical Head-Fier!" Yes, I know she's not a 22-35 year old Asian male, but the headphone community isn't about what's typical. Rather, it's about creating a place that welcomes anyone interested in personal audio. Look at that lovely lady above, she was obviously comfortable in her surrounds and being herself, joyfully engaging me and hamming it up for the camera, and relishing her moments with the headphone gear. In short, she was strongly engaged in personally experiencing and expressing within the CanJam and headphone community vibe.

And that's pretty much exactly what everybody—long-time members, n00bs, sales dudes, audio engineers, record producers, entrepreneurs, DIYers, wives, show organizers, and press alike—experienced at CanJam SoCal 2015: What it's like to be co-equal citizens in the world of headphone enthusiasm. Inclusive and interested in each other and our experiences, and passionate about the gear giving us personal access to the art of music whoever and wherever we are.

It's wonderful to be a part of the headphone enthusiast community, and CanJam SoCal 2015 was a lovely event for having that experience.

This is going to be a different type of show report for me. I'm not going to go vendor by vendor through the show—not that there's anything wrong with that mind you—but for the first time in years, headphone enthusiast community members were exhibiting their gear at an official CanJam. I think that's one of the important aspects of two way communications between members, vendors, and press. I want to feature and encourage that.

Why? Because I think it's vital to continue and strengthen the community aspect of this hobby. It is the enthusiasts themselves and the relationships they develop with each other that make this hobby strong. For many this is an ideal opportunity to find friendships among kindred spirits. I believe this is as central to the hobby as the headphones themselves.

Then there's the truly unique relationship headphone enthusiasts have with vendors. There's a very different vibe at a headphone meet than at a traditional audio show. Due to a long history of interacting at meets both big and small, vendors and enthusiasts have co-equal status in the headphone community. Lines of communication flow both ways; there's a sense of all being in the same boat together.

I think it's very important for all of us—members, industry, press—to have to have the opportunity for two-way dialog. Member exhibits is one of the ways to do that. I am happy to report that CanJam team member Warren Chi feels the same way, and doubly happy to report he's got all sorts of ideas for more ways to experience our passion for headphones and music together at future CanJams.

Okay, maybe I've been little romantic and aspirational so far. Yeah, it's not all roses in Headphonedom, there is conflict here and there. But for the most part the overwhelming vibe of the community is one of a cooperative fun. In fact, I think we do that far better in person than we do on-line and getting together more often at meets both big and small is a good idea.

As I write my reports this week, it's my desire to make this spirit of this community clearly evident. I think it's important we don't loose it as the headphone world grows and changes around us. So, I'm going to cover the member tables, and I'm also going to ask some of the industry participants about their experience with and in the world of headphones. I'm not going to be a complete letdown on the hardware front, I will mention a few ot the stand-out pieces of gear I heard. I'll also tell you about an experience with one of the headphone company CEOs that was my personal highlight of the show. Bottom line: My report this time is about the people who make up the community that gathers around headphones, and gathered at CanJam SoCal 2015.

Alrightythen, let's go meet some of the folks in this great community!

veggieboy2001's picture

what a great idea. As a noob myself, I can say that I find this approach to be interesting and charming. It's nice to see the faces of the enthusiasts taking the spotlight.

bradleyp's picture

Tyll, please respect that woman's privacy as she undergoes electric shock treatment. At least it appears to be working.