Andy Ellis grew up in Beirut, Lebanon and Paris, France, where he started studying classical guitar. While living in Bonn, Germany, Ellis discovered electric guitar and formed his first band, the Abstracts. The young teen played "beat shows" alongside older German bands in the mid '60s and this experience pushed him into the abyss of rock & roll. After studying at Boston's Berklee College of Music, Ellis joined the ranks of professional musicians, playing and teaching guitar in both the U.S. and Europe. In the late '70s, he took up the Chapman Stick, studying with its maestro and inventor, Emmett Chapman. Ellis' Stick playing led to a profile on NPR's Morning Edition and opened the door to studio work (he played the Stick solo on Amy Grant's Grammy-winning song, "Angels").
Ellis joined Keyboard magazine as a staff editor in 1988; two years later he jumped to its sister publication, Guitar Player, where he worked for more than 15 years. At GP, Ellis interviewed many greats, including Carlos Santana, Tony Rice, B.B. King and Mark Knopfler. Ellis' interviews and articles have also been published in Guitar World Acoustic, Acoustic Guitar, Frets and Fretboard Journal and his lessons appear in How to Play Blues Guitar, How to Play Rock Guitar, Guitar Player Sessions and other instructional books.
Currently, Ellis lives in Nashville, where he accompanies singer-songwriters on baritone guitar and hosts his weekly radio show, The Guitar Show with Andy Ellis. The show is heard throughout the world through a number of terrestrial radio stations and, through the shows website, his interviews stream to over 130 countries and all 50 states. In addition, as Senior Editor at Premier Guitar magazine, he continues to explore his favorite instrument through words, sound and video.