Andy McKee (born in 1979 in Topeka, Kansas, United States) is an American fingerstyle guitarist currently signed to the American record label Candyrat Records. His style of playing and his compositions have earned him a considerable international fanbase; in late 2006, a live performance of his flagship song "Drifting" became a Featured Video on YouTube and MySpace, achieving over 30,000,000 views on the former to date and remaining one of its highest rated music clips. A handful of McKee's other songs have experienced lesser success on YouTube, such as "Rylynn" with over 14,000,000 views. Similarly, McKee's cover of "Africa" reached over 9,000,000 views before suddenly being removed by Candyrat Records.
McKee played his first guitar, an Aria nylon string bought by his father, at age 13. Initially underwhelmed by his guitar lessons, McKee's electric guitar-playing cousin inspired him to continue learning, taking him out for his 16th birthday to see a guitarist named Preston Reed perform live at a clinic. McKee later bought an instructional videotape from Reed and began to learn more complex guitar techniques from it, also earning his GED that year in order to drop out of high school. He began to take influence from guitarists such as Michael Hedges, Billy McLaughlin, Pat Kirtley, and from Passion Session by Don Ross, as he self-studied the instrument.