As a child Khan Manuel picked up a guitar and taught himself to play. That determination to succeed and make his own way in the music biz has taken the Australian from teenage Jimmy Hendrix wannabe to critically acclaimed guitar virtuoso.
Like most youth ventures, the metal band Lithium which Khan joined at 13 never achieved any fame, but he recalls “having heaps of fun even though we were out of time.” For the boy inspired by the likes of Joe Satriani, Steve Vai, Frank Gambale, Jimi Hendrix and Stevie Ray Vaughan, the experience helped to balance the more serious studies at his local music institute. As the years went by Khan experimented with more musical styles in cover bands and with one half of the Australian jazz-fusion outfit Crossfire.
In 1998 Khan took out the Hometown Hero guitar contest, sponsored by Ibanez Australia. It might have been a sign, or mere coincidence, but four years later Khan moved to Oz. Settling in Sydney, he honed his skills with some of Australia’s finest musicians while nurturing the talents of others as an instructor at the International Forte School of Music.
With the 2008 release of his debut album The Knight, Khan Manuel married his love of jazz, modern rock, and classical techniques. The album went to number one on both the international Guitar Nine Records and NumberOneMusic charts in the U.S.A. Tracks from the CD were played on radio in countries around the world, attracting the attention of guitar publications including Guitar World webzine, Metal Hammer Hungary, Hardrock Haven, numerous Australian online blogs and Truth in Shredding. The album’s success saw Khan share the stage with international luminaries including Nuno Bettencourt of Extreme, an experience which he remembers as “a huge highlight.”
In 2009 Khan became the only instrumental guitarist in Australia to receive an endorsement from global guitar giant Ibanez. This recognition paves the way for Khan to perform and conduct clinics with other Ibanez guitarists from around the world. He’s also received the support of Ernie Ball guitar strings and Music Wear clothing. The year also saw Khan pen his first book, Guitar Insights, and continue to develop the talents of the next generation through his lessons at Sydney Harbour Guitar Tuition.
Early in 2010 Khan got to live a life long dream, recording with International guitar legend Frank Gambale (Chick Corea). The song composed by Khan entitled ‘When Two Become One’ was recorded in Los Angeles and Sydney and showcases virtuoso guitar playing at its finest. Additionally in September of ‘10 Khan was proud to be nominated for an award held in the southern region of New Zealand as music ‘Ambassador Of The Year’.
In 2011 Khan began endorsing Mesa Boogie Amplification, whom are also endorsed by players such as Carlos Santana and John Petrucci to name a few.
Khan Manuel plays at world-class Australian venues like The Basement and Annandale Hotel in Sydney, but he also has one eye on the world stage. In the near future Khan plans to take his music to audiences in Japan, Europe, and the United States.