Tosin Abasi, Matt Heafy and Lzzy Hale are your Young Guitarist of the Year judges

[L-R] Lzzy Hale, Tosin Abasi and Matt Heafy
(Image credit: Press)

Submissions for Guitarist of the Year 2020 are coming in droves, and we're seeing some fantastic entries all round. This year's categories include Acoustic Guitarist, Electric Guitarist, Bassist, Young Guitarist (17 and under) and Guitar Teacher of the Year.

Guitarist of the Year is the search for the top guitar talent on the planet, hosted by Guitar World, Guitar Player and Bass Player, and sponsored by PRS Guitars.

Today, we're super-excited to announce that judging your entries for the Young Guitarist category will be Animals as Leaders visionary Tosin Abasi, Trivium frontman and Twitch god Matt Heafy and Halestorm leader Lzzy Hale.

Winners will receive high-ticket prizes from PRS, and they'll be featured in Guitar World and Guitar Player. So if you're a guitarist under the age of 18, this might be your chance to make your mark and get some serious exposure.

Each category has a $30 entry fee, apart from Guitar Teacher of the Year, which is free to enter. Part of this fee will be donated to the NAMM Foundation, which helps support music education and music making for people of all ages and abilities. We're accepting submissions for all categories between September 1 and October 31, so enter now if you think you have what it takes.

To enter the paid-entry categories, entrants must film and upload a video (no longer than three minutes) of themselves playing to YouTube or Vimeo, and fill out a brief nomination form. For Guitar Teacher of the Year, students must nominate their teachers, and the teachers with the most nominations will be featured and judged.

To enter now, head to Guitarist of the Year Awards.

Tosin Abasi

Tosin Abasi

(Image credit: Jen Rosenstein)

Tosin Abasi is one of today’s foremost virtuosos, whether writing mind-bending prog-metal with Animals as Leaders, or performing alongside the likes of Steve Vai and Yngwie Malmsteen with Generation Axe. 

In recent years, Abasi has wowed the guitar market with his own Abasi Concepts designs.

Matt Heafy

Matt Heafy

(Image credit: Press)

Besides fronting one of the biggest metal bands of his generation, the Les Paul-toting Trivium leader has also made a name for himself as one of Twitch’s hottest guitar streaming talents. His prowess in both fields makes him the perfect judge for this competition.

Lzzy Hale

Lzzy Hale

(Image credit: Jeremy Ryan)

Lzzy Hale fronts hard-rock behemoths Halestorm, a role that has seen her deliver some of the biggest riffs of the past two decades, and tour the world countless times over. 

Hale is a Gibson signature artist, and her Alpine White model is one of the most sought-after Explorers on the market.

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Sam Roche

Sam was Staff Writer at from 2019 to 2023, and also created content for Total Guitar, Guitarist and Guitar Player. He has well over 15 years of guitar playing under his belt, as well as a degree in Music Technology (Mixing and Mastering). He's a metalhead through and through, but has a thorough appreciation for all genres of music. In his spare time, Sam creates point-of-view guitar lesson videos on YouTube under the name Sightline Guitar.