Tommy Emmanuel is one of the best guitarists ever to come out of Australia.

William Thomas Emmanuel was born in Muswellbrook, Australia in 1955. He started playing guitar at age 4, his brother Phil also came into the child prodigy category by beginning at age 7.

His mother gave him his first guitar lesson, and he learned to play the guitar by playing records of the great guitarists, at times placing 20 cent pieces on the record to slow it down so he could find out what note to play.

In 1960 (when Tommy was 5) he played rhythm guitar in a quartet with all the Emmanuel siblings. His father died in 1966 and Tommy started giving guitar lessons to help the family.

Tommy joined some bands in Sydney and his success grew until he was recording with artists such as Stevie Wonder and Tiny Tim. Emmanuel started touring around Australia and recorded with more players. He has worked with Eric Clapton, Olivia Newton-John, John Denver and of course his mentor Chet Atkins.

Tommy then moved to the US and based himself there. In 1999 he became a Certified Guitar Player (CGP) for services to finger style (Tommy's unique style). One of only a few ever to receive the honour, his CGP was presented to him by Chet Atkins. He recorded 2 albums with the late `Godfather of finger picking.'

Tommy Emmanuel has earned a reputation worldwide as one of the best guitarists in the world today. His last Album "Endless Road" has taken live audiences by storm. I have had the pleasure of meeting Tommy. He signed my guitar and it is now my pride and joy (Taliesin's Muse points out that it's her guitar, really. I plan to never give it back).

Emmanuel has kept audiences spellbound with his impressive repertoire and his styles range from rock, of which an example is at the Sydney 2000 Olympics opening ceremony when playing live with his brother Phil commentator Bruce McAvaney said "Tommy and Phil Emmanuel scared the ballroom dancers right out of the arena" to soft jazz with an amazing rendition of Blue Moon.

Tommy Emmanuel is one of the most talented guitarists on the planet (quoting Chet Atkins, who should know), and almost everyone who has had the pleasure of listening to his music will agree with me on this statement.


  • Can't Get Enough (Midnight Drive in the US) (1996)
  • Classical Gas (Tommy Emmanuel with the Australian Philharmonic Orchestra)
  • Collaboration (Tommy Emmanuel with numerous guests) (1998)
  • Dare to be Different (1990)
  • The Day Finger Pickers Took Over the World (Tommy Emmanuel with Chet Atkins)
  • Determination (1991)
  • From Out of Nowhere (Tommy Emmanuel with Pee Wee Clark) (1979)
  • Initiation (Asian release) (1995)
  • The Journey (1993)
  • The Journey Continues (1994)
  • Midnight Drive (1997)
  • Only (1998)
  • Terra Firma (1995)
  • Up from Down Under (1987)
  • The Very Best of Tommy Emmanuel (2001)
  • Endless Road (2004)


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