Thursday 21 November 2019

Guitar YouTubers and what videos to post

I noticed that one of my favourite fingerstyle guitarists, Jake Reichbart, has started live streaming. I'm always interested in what the professional fingerstyle guitarists out there have to say so I've been watching him (not live though, timezone issues).

Note: the guitar YouTubers I particularly follow are:

  • Naudo Rodrigues. Just plays fingerstyle covers. "Just". The guy is a genius. I have modeled my playing on his style for more than a decade now from just watching and transcribing.
  • Jake Riechbart. Just plays fingerstyle covers generally with a jazz feel. "Just". Recently streaming.
  • Paul Davids. Talks about many interesting guitar topics, very knowledgeable and has a nice presentation style.
  • Sammy G. He's quirky, interesting, a true musician and he talks about stuff in that vein. I don't think he is a fingerstyle player at heart, but when I've heard him fingerstyle, he's pretty good at it.
  • Allen Mathews. Professional Classical guitarist. Hugely generous with his instructional videos, so much good stuff, and even though I'm not a classical guitarist I was born from classical guitar, and I can relate to almost everything he talks about.
  • Kelly Valleau. Just plays fingerstyle covers. "Just". But his attention to arrangements is outstanding. I love it when he takes a minimalist approach and every note counts. I'd like to be like that!
  • Adam Neely. Bass player, quirky, but another true musician. Talks about proper music theory which I generally don't understand, but just enough for me to have an idea what he is talking about.

There are many other guitarists in my feed, but these listed are the ones that post most frequently and generally with something I'd like to see. Now Jake Reichbart will post a song, and has recorded an instructional video on it, so you can pay him some cash and he will provide you with it. So the more views he gets, the more sales he would get. Jake mentioned during one of his streams was how his viewership has dropped off, which affects his income stream. How previously he would post something and have thousands of views in a short period of time, but now it's more like hundreds of views. I have noticed the same with the other guitarists I follow. They have many subscribers, they release a quality video, but after a week maybe a few thousand views. No more million views in a week!

I think the days of targeting youtube views is probably over. As in making a video specifically for people to watch because you think that is what they want to watch and will get lots of views. If the people who are really good at it are running out of reach then it's all over. I love to make a good video, I won't settle for poor quality audio, and I only ever posted what I thought people might like to see. So generally just a song, not me nattering. But now, I think it's okay for me to put stuff out there I hadn't previously done in the past. That slow motion video I posted the other month - generally not liked. But I wanted to do it, so it doesn't matter! My "Jawmunji Talks" videos, which I used to post elsewhere but now post on my main channel - they are generally enjoyed, I look forward to posting more in the future...and I want to try live streaming. Maybe over the Christmas holidays.

YouTube - tough, but also liberating!


  1. JAW,just want to thank u for your work.I started playing guitar several years ago and have focused much of my effort on your version of Wish You Were Here.It's great but I do want to add a solo section to it at this stage. I much prefer it to Kelly Valleau version. I also practice Kelly's version of Buffalo Soldier which is sweet. But overall I find his covers on the stale side due to oversimplification. He seems to simplify so much that he will even go to exotic tunings to maximize the number of open string notes in his performance. I would imagine some one will have an AI app that can do the same in the future. I also like your videos of "Time" and hope u return to it and get some Tabs going. Thanks for all your inspiration!
    Brian (

    1. Good to hear from you Brian! I'm with you on the exotic tunings, I will often go to Drop D because it's not a huge mental leap to remember you need to add two frets to the sixth string, but DADGAD and Open G and all the rest - you can't keep that in your head, shirley! My playing involves a lot of pattern memorising - which on the surface isn't good - but there is plenty of instinctive chords. If you had to remember each chord in each tuning it seems like too much. But then again, perhaps with practice it's the same as remembering your D in Drop D.

      Anyway, yes, make everything your own. Maybe the first few pieces learn from tabs, but after that change songs to suit you and what you want from them. Watch out for my updates on Dark Side of the Moon, I usually put a bit of effort into it every year.

      Glad I could help out!

  2. I do find it fun to figure out how to best play/finger a piece from tabs. The other day I looked at your video and had to chuckle at how differently you played Wish U Were Here using same tabs. No way can I do 1st+2nd string with my baby finger and have 3rd finger hanging out like you do. I will be fine changed up songs to my preference as I never can leave anything alone, but I do not have an ear for notes. Not sure I will ever be able to just play a tune by listening to it.