Martin Taylor and Tommy Emmanuel UK Tour

Two of the world’s greatest acoustic guitarists, Tommy Emmanuel and Martin Taylor, embark on a collaborative UK tour in March 2013 entitled: “The Colonel & The Governor.”

The tour will see both guitarists playing together and separately. The tour is also the name of Emmanuel and Taylor’s collaborative acoustic guitar album scheduled for February 2013 release.

The 16-date UK tour starts Thursday 7th March at the Waterside Theatre, Aylesbury. Tickets are on sale from the 24 hour box office 0844 478 0898 and

While they are both serious “men of letters” with Tommy Emmanuel being an honorary Kentucky Colonel, a CGP (Certified Guitar Player), an Order of Australia Medalist (AM) and the holder of an honorary masters (MA) and Martin Taylor being an M.B.E. (Member of the British Empire) and holder of two Honourary Doctorates, they honour each other affectionately with these titles. Both acoustic guitarists are leaders of music in their respective countries – Australia and the UK. Call it a British Commonwealth thing!

Known for his complex finger-picking style, Tommy Emmanuel is an Australian guitarist who performs energetic concerts, and is highly regarded for the use of percussive effects on the guitar. In 2008 and 2010, Guitar Player Magazine’s Readers Poll voted him Best Acoustic Guitarist.

Martin Taylor is a multi-award winning guitarist and Acoustic Guitar magazine calls him, “the acoustic guitarist of his generation.” He dazzles audiences with his solo shows, which combine virtuosity, emotion, humour, and a strong stage presence while his inimitable style has seen him recognised as the world’s foremost exponent of solo finger style guitar playing. Taylor has invented and developed a way of playing the guitar that is admired, and often imitated, by guitarists all over the world.

Collaborations with artists including Jeff Beck, Bill Wyman, Jamie Cullum, David Grisman and Bryn Terfel have seen him garner two honorary doctorates, a BBC lifetime achievement award, Top 10 albums in both the USA and Europe, a record 14 British Jazz Awards and in 2002 he was appointed MBE ‘For Services to Jazz Music’ by Her Majesty the Queen of Great Britain.

As one of the world’s most recognized online guitar teachers his innovative online guitar school with its headquarters in Napa, CA has been featured on NPR, BBC, Fox News and the LA Times. Students in over 58 countries subscribe to the school for online guitar lessons.

2012 saw the London premiere of Martin Taylor’s ‘Spirit of Django’ orchestral Suite at the Royal Albert Hall as part of the BBC Proms.

“Martin Taylor is one of the most awesome solo guitar players in the history of the instrument. He’s unbelievable.”
– Pat Metheny

“No matter how complex or daring, Taylor’s interpretations never short change the melodies; indeed his remarkable fluid touch embues a seamless beauty. Martin Taylor is something to behold.”
– The Washington Post

Throughout his career, Tommy Emmanuel has played with many notable artists including Chet Atkins, Eric Clapton, Sir George Martin, Air Supply, John Denver, Les Paul and Doc Watson.

Tommy and his brother Phil performed at Sydney’s closing ceremony at the Summer Olympics in 2000. The event was televised worldwide to an estimated 2.85 billion viewers.

Tommy has said that even at a young age he was fascinated by Atkins’ musical style of playing bass with the thumb and melody parts with the first two or three fingers at the same time. This technique became the basis of Tommy’s guitar style.
While Tommy has never had formal music training, his playing ability has won him fans from all over the world. He is known to play percussion parts on the body of his guitar. As a solo performer he never plays to a set list and uses a minimum of effects. He usually completes recordings in one take.

“Tommy Emmanuel’s steel-string fretwork
is technically dazzling and atmospheric.”
– Chicago Tribune

Emmanuel frequently uses his left thumb to fret bass notes on the 5th and 6th strings as well as playing chords such as Am and E with just two fingers. He uses a thumb pick mostly, a flat pick or just fingers.

His main guitar is a small-bodied custom Maton EBG808 that is fitted with a pickup and an internal condenser microphone, to which he has given the nickname “Mouse” due to its quieter volume unplugged but massive sound when plugged into an amp. Two of his three main stage guitars, notably his signature TE1 Maton dreadnought, are battered and worn from his excessive playing and percussive techniques on them. He once stated that all three of his stage guitars have been broken and repaired numerous times over the years.

As a young man in Australia, Tommy wrote to his hero Chet Atkins in Nashville. Eventually Atkins replied with words of encouragement and a longstanding invitation to drop by to visit.

In 1997, Emmanuel and Atkins recorded as a duo and released the album The Day Finger Pickers Took over the World, which was also to be Atkins’ last recorded album before he died in 2001. In 1998, a year after the album was released it won Best Country Instrumental Album at the Nashville Music Awards.

“Blessed with impeccable taste and exceptional technique,
he’s able to perform folk, rock, jazz, country and blues
with fluid ease and impressive authority.”
– San Diego Union Tribune
In July 1999, at the 15th Annual Chet Atkins Appreciate Society Convention, Chet presented Tommy with a Certified Guitar Player award, an honor Atkins has bestowed on other guitarists. This award gains its fame from being bestowed by Atkins himself, a widely recognized leader in guitar music. The award states: “In Recognition of his Contributions to the Art of Fingerpicking.” Tommy performs at the Chet Atkins Appreciation Society in July each year in Nashville.

“Tommy is about the only guitarist I’ve heard,” said Chet Atkins, “who can come close to what Lenny Breau did with harmonics, and he’s got a style all his own. I think he’s probably the greatest finger-picker in the world today. He’s inventive, fearless and has a flawless sense of rhythm. He’s a great showman, too.”

Emmanuel’s duet with Chet Atkins, Smokey Mountain Lullaby, was nominated for the 1998 Grammy award for Country Instrumental Performance. In 2006, Emmanuel received his second Grammy award nomination for Best Country Instrumental Performance for Gameshow Rag.

Tommy Emmanuel’s last album Little By Little was released in 2010. The deluxe 2xCD set features special guests Pam Rose, John Knowles cgp, Victor Wooten, Doyle Dykes and many more. The album is available to purchase

24 Hour Box Office: 0844 478 0898
Book Online:

Thursday 7th March
Aylesbury, Waterside Theatre
Tickets: £22 / Box Office 0844 871 7607
Stage Time: 7:30pm
Exchange Street, Aylesbury,
Buckinghamshire, HP20 1UG

Friday 8th March
Gateshead, The Sage
Tickets: £20 / Box Office 0191 443 4661
St Mary’s Square, Gateshead Quays,
Gateshead, NE8 2JR

Saturday 9th March
Manchester, Bridgewater Hall
Tickets: £20 / Box Office: 0161 907 9000
Lower Mosley Street,
Manchester, M2 3WS

Sunday 10th March
Wolverhampton, Robin 2
Tickets: £20 / Box Office: 0190 240 1211
26-28 Mount Pleasant, Bilston,
Wolverhampton, WV14 7LJ

Tuesday 12th March
Barnstaple, Queen’s Theatre
Tickets: £21 / Box Office: 0127 132 4242
Stage Time: 7:30pm
Boutport Street, Barnstaple,
North Devon, EX31 1SY

Wednesday 13th March
Exeter, Corn Exchange
Tickets: £20 / Box Office: 0139 266 5938
Stage Time: 7:30pm
Market Street, Exeter, EX1 1BW

Thursday 14th March
Bristol, Colston Hall
Tickets: £20 / Box Office: 0117 922 3686
Stage Time: 7:30pm
Colston Street, Bristol, BS1 5AR

Saturday 16th March
London o2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire
Tickets: £22.50 / Box Office: 0844 477 2000
Stage Time: 7pm
Shepherd’s Bush Green,
London, W12 8TT

Sunday 17th March
Folkestone, Leas Cliffe Hall
Tickets: £21 / Box Office: 0844 847 1776
Stage Time: 7:30pm
The Leas, Folkestone, Kent, CT20 2DZ

Monday 18th March
Crawley, Hawth Theatre
Tickets: £20 / Box Office: 0129 355 3636
Stage Time: 7:30pm
Hawth Avenue, Crawley, RH10 6YZ

Wednesday 20th March
Ipswich, Corn Exchange
Tickets: £20 / Box Office: 01473 433 100
Stage: 7:30pm
King Street, Ipswich, Suffolk, IP1 1DH

Thursday 21st March
Chesterfield, Winding Wheel
Tickets: £20 / Box Office: 0124 634 5334
Stage Time: 7:30pm
13 Holywell Street, Chesterfield,
Derbyshire, S41 7SA

Friday 22nd March
Halifax, Victoria Theatre
Tickets: £21 / Box Office: 0142 235 1158
Stage Time: 7:30pm
2 Fountain Street, Halifax, West Yorkshire, HX1 1BP

Sunday 24th March
Ulverston, Coronation Hall
Tickets: £20 / Box Office: 0122 958 7140
Stage Time: 7:30pm
Coronation Hall, County Square, Ulverston, Cumbria, LA12 7LZ

Tuesday 26th March
Aberdeen, Lemon Tree
Tickets: £20 / Box Office: 01224 641 122
Stage Time: 7:30pm
5 West North Street, Aberdeen, AB24 5AT

Thursday 28th March
Edinburgh, Queen’s Hall
Tickets: £20 / Box Office: 0131 668 2019
Stage Time: 7:30pm
85-89 Clerk Street, Edinburgh, EH8 9JG

  • Michael Dickinson

    Sad they won’t be coming to Belfast!