It is, on the one hand, pretty amazing that we live in a time when players can make a living producing guitar videos from their homes. On the other hand, it’s easy to underestimate the sheer amount of hard work and creative challenge involved.
The players that have made our year-end round-up of the best online guitar personalities are one- or two-person production machines. Guitarists able to not just play well, but come up with engaging concepts, plus apply the production know-how required to bring their ideas to life. Here’s to the ‘Tubers.
1. Ola Englund
The metal guitar impresario continued to dominate in his role as YouTube’s leading authority on six-string savagery in 2019. The Super Swede turned-out an incredible amount of useful test videos, tutorials and production tips, while still finding time to run his Solar Guitars brand – which launched four new seven-strings earlier this month. A true Super Swede.
2. Lee Anderton and Pete Honoré (Andertons)
It’s fair to say that, with the help of Messrs Rob Chapman and Rabea Massaad (both whom place elsewhere on this list, independently), Andertons set the template for useful and entertaining guitar content on YouTube. Alongside those above, The Captain now shares the stage with ‘Danish’ Pete Honoré and the Andertons production has become a slick, lean content machine, bringing us some 32 clips in December alone!
3. Mick Taylor and Dan Steinhardt (That Pedal Show)
Mick Taylor and Dan Steinhardt spotted a gap in the market for in-depth tonal geekery when they launched That Pedal Show, back in 2015. It has since grown to an incredible 212,000 subscribers and this year has seen some excellent guests join the fray, notably Ed O’Brien, John Smith and Snarky Puppy’s Mark Lettieri.
4. Rabea Massaad
It’s been another busy 12 months for Rabea Massaad. He’s developed his own signature set of Bare Knuckle pickups (SILO), played all over with his post-rock trio Toska (including a set at Download Festival) – and produced a tonne of Q&As, fun covers and demos for his YouTube channel.
5. Pete Thorn
A session whizz for the likes of Don Henley, Melissa Etheridge and Chris Cornell, Pete Thorn has been building a considerable following on YouTube since joining back in 2006. This year we particularly enjoyed his So You Wanna Be A Pro Musician? series. Elsewhere, you’ll find pro interviews, tone tips and live Q&As.
6. Rob Chapman
Chappers endures in 2019. The online innovator unveiled the new V2 Range of his Chapman Guitars, launched a new pedal-making firm, Snake Oil Fine Instruments, and continued to pump out amusing nonsense, gear demos and inspirational content galore across his personal channel.
7. Mary Spender
British YouTuber Mary Spender’s channel is a vibrant mixture of covers, gear demos and soulful, blues-y folk rock originals that evoke the likes of Jeff Buckley. Her technique (on guitar and vocal) is impressive, yet her videos – whether exploring the quietest room on earth, or struggling to nail John Mayer’s Georgia – are unassuming, funny and super encouraging.
8. Lari Basilio
The Brazilian rock guitarist released her third album Far More in 2019 and was invited to join Joe Satriani’s G4 Experience. Satch also guested on the aforementioned record. Basilio uses the channel like a sketchpad and showreel, her play-through videos and gear demos are sublime and she’s content to let the playing do the talking.