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Top 12 YouTube Fingerstyle Guitar Videos You Should Know

Because a Top 10 is too mainstream. LOL.

Here's a list of videos that are popular, known, influential or in some way I feel is a good introduction to vast jungle of fingerstyle guitar YouTube videos.

If you're a guitar teacher, this is a good list to introduce your students to in case they're not familiar with it.

If you're a total fingerstyle guitar geek, you've probably seen all these videos & will ask me why some videos are not included. The reason is because there's a lot of videos out there! =p

Share & comment away! =)

1. Drifting - Andy McKee

This is one of the videos that started it all off. Great lesson in playing in DADGAD, percussive playing & tapping.

2. Crazy (Gnarls Barkley) - Don Ross

Don Ross was one of my biggest influences when I started playing fingerstyle guitar. His album 'Passion Session' is still of my faves. Strongly recommended. 

3. Somebody I used to know (Gotye) - Mike Dawes


Mike Dawes covered this Gotye song and focused all his energy to get this crazy arrangement together. Epic fingerstyle guitar. 

4. Airtap - Erik Mongrain

This started a whole generation of lap-tapping guitarists. Great performance, super clean briliant playing. Love it.

5. Reality - Antoine Dufour

Antoine is a major influence to a whole new generation of players who know fingerstyle guitar via the CandyRat Youtube channel and record label. Very intricate playing and elegant textures.

6. Playing with Pink Noise - Kaki King 

This is the Kaki King song that most people know her for. Since this song, she has explored looping, different instruments and gotten even more textural and ambient. Great compositions and moods in her music. 

7. Time 2 - Ewan Dobson


Ewan Dobson is his own genre I think. And the look. Wow.

8. Passionflower - Jon Gomm


One of my favorite singer-songwriters/virtuoso fingerstyle guitarists. This song made him famous though my fave piece of his is his take on Radiohead's High and Dry. My dream is to tour with Jon.

9. Pirates of the Caribean - Sungha Jung

Most of my younger guitar students started playing because of Sungha. He's an inspiration to a whole generation because he showed them that it's possible for a kid to play like this. 

10. No Woman No Cry (Bob Marley) - Thomas Leeb

A huge influence to my playing after I met him back in 2003 when I attended Eric Roche's Residential Guitar Workshop in Devon, UK. Thomas is one of a kind. Also, check out Grooveyard (video link).

11. Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence - Kotaro Oshio


Kotaro's performance on this is a great introduction to his style which blends his Michael Hedges influences and his own sensibilities. Great touch and beautiful playing.

12. Billie Jean (Michael Jackson) - Adam Rafferty

Adam is all about groove and tone. A maestro and some of the most elegant fingerstyle groove pop guitar you'll hear.


Thanks for checking this blog post!

It's part of the new material for version 2.0 of the Percussive Fingerstyle Guitar Course that I teach. The new version is in the works...

In the meantime, you can check out my other guitar & ukulele courses here: Az Samad Guitar & Fingerstyle Ukulele Lessons

Thank you! =)



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Mike Dawes & Az Samad | Malaysia Tour 2013

Mike Dawes Malaysia Tour 2013:

June 17 | Mon | 8pm
Guest appearance at Open Mic @ The Venue #9 hosted by Az Samad
RSVP & invite your friends here: Official Facebook Event Page

[FB Photo Album]
Open Mic @ The Venue #9 Hosted by Az Samad (Pix by Albert Ng)


June 19 | Wed | 8pm
Fingerstyle Guitar Workshop at Sixstrings

[FB Photo Album]
Mike Dawes Workshop @ Sixstrings 


June 20 | Thurs | 10am
Switch.up TV interview with Mike Dawes on Strum

[FB Photo Album]
Switch.up TV interview with Mike Dawes on Strum



June 20 | Thur | 9:30pm
Fingerstyle Guitar Artistry
Mike Dawes & Az Samad Live @ No Black Tie

RSVP & invite your friends here: Official Facebook Event Page

[FB Photo Album]
Fingerstyle Guitar Artistry by Mike Dawes & Az Samad at NBT 


June 22 | Sat | 10am
Fingerstyle Guitar Workshop at The Canteen At ChinaHouse 

[FB Photo Album]
Mike Dawes Workshop @ The Canteen, ChinaHouse in Penang 


June 23 | Sun | 9pm
Fingerstyle Guitar Artistry Tour
Mike Dawes & Az Samad Live @ ChinaHouse 

RSVP & invite your friends here: Official Facebook Event Page 

[FB Photo Album]
Fingerstyle Guitar Artistry by Mike Dawes & Az Samad @ ChinaHouse 


Sungha Jung, Mike Dawes & Az Samad in Penang [FB Photo Album]


Official Facebook Event Page:

For the first time, join us as YouTube sensation Mike Dawes (UK) makes his Malaysian debut. With over 2.8 million cumulative views of his videos, Mike has garnered critical acclaim especially since his cover of Gotye ‘Somebody I used to know’ became a viral video hit. “Astounding Virtuosity” in the words Grammy Winner Gotye himself! 

Joining him for this 1-night-only concert will be Malaysian guitar maestro Az Samad. 

Expect alternating sets of fingerstyle guitar artistry from both artists & maybe even a duet at the end of the night. This is emotional, beautiful and technically expressive guitar music at its best, up close and personal at No Black Tie.


NOTE: For reservations, please call +603 2142 3737 (after 5pm). Please call to reserve early as we expect this to be a fully packed show.

Cover charge: RM40 for adults, RM25 for students

No Black Tie
17, Jalan Mesui
Off Jalan Nagasari
50200 Kuala Lumpur

Official Facebook Event Page:


Mike Dawes (UK)

“Astounding Virtuosity” - Gotye

“Completely Spellbinding” - Evening Post

“Mike tears it right up, his hand looks like a creepy spider!” - Andy Mckee

“Beautiful and sensitively played arrangements and compositions” - Acoustic Magazine

“A world-class acoustic act” -

“Mike Dawes is a F***ing awesome guitarist!” - Jon Gomm

Mike Dawes is a young steel string guitarist from the South of England

Since discovering the music of Pierre Bensusan at an early age, Mike has been completely dedicated to the guitar (along with the more obscure music that comes with it) 
Currently residing in the South of England, Mike has been stunning audiences and critics with his guitar playing since 2008. His music often defies description, taking influence from Celtic, Rock, World and Popular music.

Mike has performed alongside, and in support of some of the world’s most highly respected musicians, including: 

Seth Lakeman
John Renbourn
Tommy Emmanuel
Pierre Bensusan
Erik Mongrain
Julie Felix
Thomas Leeb
Antonio Forcione
Guthrie Govan
Martin Harley/Martin Harley Band
Pino Forastiere
Trace Bundy
Petteri Sariola
Chris Wood
Robin Williamson
Jon Gomm
Karima Francis

....and many more!

Mike's debut single with CandyRat Records went viral instantly, with the likes of Gotye, Beardyman and Andy Mckee reposting the video. His music has been featured on the front pages of Reddit, Gawker and Collegehumour whilst featured Mike at the top of their homepage, sandwiched between The Queen and Barack Obama.

Performance highlights include the International Guitar Festival, The Komedia Theatre and a headline concert on the Acoustic Stage at Tommy Emmanuel's 'Tommyfest', where he shared the bill with the Frank Vignola Trio, Gordon Giltrap and of course, Tommy Emmanuel. 

He has been featured in numerous international publications including Guitarist, Acoustic and Acoustic Guitar magazines. His music has been played on BBC Radio, whilst being featured on international airwaves from Canada to Japan. 2010 saw Mike embark upon a 44 date UK tour, including shows at the Acoustic Festival of Great Britain, Exeter Guitar Festival and Arts Centres nationwide. Keep up to date with his busy schedule online via the 'Live Shows' tab. 

Armed with a slightly less-than-sane attitude towards music, 2 wooden boxes and an ever persistent attitude, Mike Dawes is a world class musician with a fantastic reputation. Watch this space for news of his upcoming solo release, new videos and exciting tour dates.


1. Mike Dawes - Somebody That I Used To Know (Gotye) - Solo Guitar

2. Mike Dawes - The Impossible - Solo Guitar

3. Mike Dawes - Boogie Slam (2013) Solo Acoustic Guitar

4. Mike Dawes - The Impossible 2.0 (Featuring Nolly + Petteri Sariola)

'The Impossible 2.0' Is a unique multi-instrumental version of 'The Impossible'. It features Petteri Sariola and Adam 'Nolly' Getgood (Periphery) 

For reservations, please call +603 2142 3737 (after 5pm). Please call to reserve early as we expect this to be a fully packed show.



Az Samad (Malaysia)

"Technically impressive...utilizing the percussive potential of the guitar to great effect, something in the vein of guitarist Andy McKee." - All About Jazz

"Malaysian guitar maestro" -The Straits Times (Singapore)

"Guitar Guru. Considered one of the best guitarists in Malaysia" -Malaysian Business: Malaysia's Premier Business Magazine since 1972 

"Az's compositions are at times playful and irreverent, and at other times lyrical and soulful, but always inventive, tastefully crafted and beautifully nuanced — an absolute pleasure to listen to." - The Edge Malaysia

"undeniable talent..a one of a kind artist" - The Concordian 

"a steel-string acoustic guitar maestro" - The Star 

Guitarist-Composer-Educator Az Samad has performed in the United States, Europe and Asia. A versatile musician who has appeared on sixteen CDs (seven of which are his solo releases), Az has worked with Grammy winners Flaco Jiménez and Max Baca, drummer Bernie Dresel (Brian Setzer Orchestra), singer-songwriters Tara Linda and Reza Salleh, guitarists John Stowell, Adam Rafferty, Stuart Ryan, and Teja Gerken; world music ensemble Bogofusion; electronic jazz-funk group Planet Loop; Cumbia-Dub band Candelaria; and string jazz ensemble JazzMine. Az has been invited to perform as the opening act for concerts by Tommy Emmanuel and Martin Taylor.

Az was the featured classical guitar soloist with the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra (MPO) for the Distant Worlds: Music from Final Fantasy Kuala Lumpur premiere conducted by Arnie Roth (USA). He has also performed as part of the MPO in other sold-out performances and worked with conductors Richard Kaufman (USA) and Mark Fitz-Gerald (UK).

As an educator, Az has been on the faculty of Berklee College of Music's Summer Guitar Sessions and has taught workshops at Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut; Culturefest in Pipestem, West Virginia; and The Freight & Salvage in Berkeley, California. Az believes in contributing back to the society that has supported his music efforts. His music outreach program starts off with scholarship student Irena Taib of The Impatient Sisters fame. Az currently conducts private guitar lessons in Kuala Lumpur with a strong focus on beginners and Jazz students. 

His past festival appearances includes performances at Penang Island Jazz Festival (Penang, Malaysia), Mosaic Music Festival (Singapore), The Philippine International Jazz and Arts Festival (Philippines), Culturefest (West Virginia, USA), Y2K International Live Looping Festival - with Planet Loop (Santa Cruz, CA, USA) and Georgetown Literary Festival (Penang, Malaysia). 

In 2012, he embarked on his first European tour with California-based Tara Linda & The Tortilla Western Trio performing in the Folk Segovia Festival, Spain & a 3-night residency at Töpferei Niehenke, Hasbergen, Germany. The Amsterdam Recordings - his first solo electric fingerstyle guitar album was recorded during the tour. Previously based in Berkeley, California; Az now lives in Kuala Lumpur.

For reservations, please call +603 2142 3737 (after 5pm). Please call to reserve early as we expect this to be a fully packed show.



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