With the coming of Australian guitar player John Butler, and Delhi based electro-acoustic songwriter DhruvVisvanath, Calcutta seems to have whole heartedly accepted the modern finger style guitar movement. With more artists of the genre looking to drop in at the city in the coming months, here are 10 incredible fingerstyle guitarists who you should check out.
(Disclaimer: The list is by no means, a comprehensive list judging any of the artists. It is a non-sequential listing of well-known and some not so well known artists. If you feel like your favourites have not made it to the list, mention them in the comments section)
While this UK based musician might be best known for his renditions of Bohemian Rhapsody and Teardrop, his albums have topped multiple charts and serve as solid inspiration for any aspiring musician/song writer. Hand Built by Robots and Write It On Your Skin are two albums that are worth delving into, whether you are a student of the arts or simply want to feel like you’re in a music video, walking down the street.
This Canadian finger style guitarist is a stalwart in the art form having made a name early on; if you are a fan of this kind of music, you cannot ignore him. Much like the granddaddies of the style – Preston Reed and Michael Hedges, Don Ross focuses more on the picking aspects and not so much on the percussion. PS 15 is another must get album.
One of the most prominent names in the world of guitar in general, she’s carved out a niche audience with her jazz tinged melodies. Also having provided music for the acclaimed film August Rush, most recently, she’s established an identity as a visual artist as well.
This Australian busker probably needs no more introductions after his stint at Jadavpur University. The surfer won hearts with his energetic playing and furthermore cemented his role as a song writer in his band The John Butler Trio.
Another picker and possibly one of the biggest names in the guitar world, he is respected by people across genres. While his Beatles medley and rendition of Somewhere Over The Rainbow have garnered massive applause, his originals still hold firm as impressive forms of guitar wizardry.
This Chilean’s technique has to be seen to be truly admired. Having lost his right arm at a young age due to an accident, his picking style is entirely based on playing the guitar with just his left hand via a combination of tapping and picking.
The proverbial bad boy of the scene, this guy takes all the standard tropes, the picking, tapping and the percussions and takes it to a whole new level by incorporating odd time signatures and polyrhythms. Truly new age in the modern acoustic guitar world, his cover of Periphery’s Scarlet opened up a whole new world to the metal community and vice versa.
One of the most popular guitarists on YouTube at the moment, this Englishman also fits well into the new age idea incorporating complex melodies along with drum sounds and bass lines coupled with stellar song writing that sets him apart from everyone else.
This Canadian composer’s style comes very close to that of Michael Hedges, however, he is best known for his use of the lap tapping guitar technique where he places the instrument flat on his lap and plays using a mix of tapping and harmonics.
This Delhi based musician has gone a long way sing his first upload of a cover of Drifting by Andy McKee on his YouTube channel. Having released his debut EP, Chronicles, in 2012 and played at NH7 Weekender multiple times, Dhruv, who is on a country wide tourright now, seems to be one of the most popular finger style guitarists around. His style features a very distinct bass thump along with a strum of the guitar.
Dhruv is all set to perform at The Doodle Room in Kolkata on 28th of October.
This list would have been incomplete without having mentioned this man. The most popular finger style guitar player, his songs Drifting and Rylynn are considered classics. Drifting is usually the first stepping stone for people venturing into this art form. He is also known for his use of the harp guitar in songs such as Into The Ocean.