Meet Mike Dawes, an extremely talented fingerstyle guitarist. Mike is famous for composing, arranging and then performing multiple parts at the same time. Mike was born on the 21st of July 1989 in Guildford, Surrey. The names of his parents aren’t known, but they are responsible for kindling Mike’s interest in music with an introduction to The Blues Brothers. Mike took his first steps as a musician playing keyboards, but his destiny lay in another direction. When he was twelve, he picked up an electric guitar, a Les Paul, and he never looked back.
Even though he was barely a teenager, Mike went looking for avenues to explore his newfound love. He got involved with lots of musical projects and bands and even started entering guitar competitions. When he was only thirteen, he made it to the semi-finals of Jimmy Page’s Riffathon.
It is an incredible achievement considering he had been playing the guitar for less than two years. Mike continued playing the electric guitar for a few more years and experimented with a range of techniques. In 2007, he decided to try out an acoustic guitar. It was a modified Taylor, and he whimsically named it “Jean Claude.”
The change to acoustic guitar moved Mike away from playing with bands and launched him as a solo artist. He travelled across England, performing both at festivals and concert venues. He also built a solid social media following with superb videos like this arrangement of Gotye’s Somebody That I Used To Know.
He received high praise for this arrangement, even from Gotye himself: “It’s a really beautiful piece of music. It’s wonderfully arranged. It’s just a fantastic piece of music. I also like the instrumental interpretation because it gives a different perspective on the musical arrangement. It’s not about how somebody’s voice transmits the story of the relationship”.
As Mike’s fame spread, he played with a range of famous musicians, including Tommy Emmanuel, Seth Lakeman and Newton Faulkner. He was also signed by CandyRat Records and has released two studio albums, What Just Happened? in 2013 and Era in 2017 as well as a live album, Shows and Distancing: Live in the USA, in 2020. He was named Best Acoustic Guitarist in the World Right Now in a poll run by Total Guitar and MusicRadar in 2017 and again in 2018.
Unsurprisingly, Mike has a large social media following. He has 225,000 YouTube subscribers, and his Gotye video has received 11 million views on one YouTube page alone. His cover of Metallica’s one exploded online and was viewed 40 million times in the first two weeks! Perhaps it’s natural that his net worth is estimated between 2 and 5 million dollars. We can only guess about Mike’s personal life as he remains tight-lipped on that score. He does not appear to be married, and no partner has been mentioned or seen in interviews.
The mystery of Mike’s personal life serves to make him all the more intriguing. However, as no answers are available, we will have to enjoy his music and keep guessing. If you want to see more from this super talented musician you can subscribe to his YouTube channel or follow him on Facebook or check out his official website.