Bryan Garbe is a multi-instrumentalist that specializes in drums, percussion and steel pan. He has been playing professionally and teaching for nearly two decades.
Bryan has given drum clinics and master classes at several universities and private schools in London, Italy, Trinidad, Ireland, China and throughout the US. For the past six years he has also been teaching acoustic and electric guitar, ukulele, bass, and piano. Bryan is endorsed by Remo Drum Heads, Vater Sticks, Dream Cymbals, and Luna Guitars and Ukuleles.
Bryan is currently based in Brooklyn and teaches at the Williamsburg School of Music and privately throughout the tri-state area. He plays in several bands in NYC and is an active freelance musician. His main project, Oak & Ash has opened for Bon Jovi at Madison Square Garden and Philip Phillips at the Beacon Theatre in New York City. They recently finished recording a full-length record with Grammy Award winning Producer, Jacquire King. Please visit oakandashmusic.com
In 2020 Bryan was accepted into The Society of Composers and Lyricists Mentorship Program and was able to study with some of the best film and tv composers in the business. Bryan has recently finished composing an album for the production music library at Warner Chappell. The album features the steel pan in a new and creative way.
From 2011 to 2017, Bryan was the Vice President of the Connecticut Percussive Arts Society; an international group of drummers and percussionists that focus on enhancing music education and connecting drummers and percussionists from around the world, pas.org. He is the creator of the CT PAS “Artist Spotlight Series,” a monthly feature which aims to promote and connect Connecticut drummers, percussionists, and ensembles.
Bryan began taking drum lessons at the Jim Royle Drum Studio in Bridgeport, Connecticut, where he was introduced to the world of percussion. At the studio he learned at a young age how to read music and play a wide variety of percussion instruments. Because of his solid foundation in the percussive arts, Bryan taught himself piano, guitar, ukulele, bass and delved into composition, in particular on the steel drum.
Bryan’s special talent began to develop and was recognized by his teacher, Jim Royle. At thirteen years old, he auditioned and was accepted to perform with the drum studio’s top percussion ensemble that tours internationally. From 2003 through 2006 the ensemble performed at Bands of America, PASIC, and on board the Carnival Cruise Lines, traveling from New York to the Bahamas and Jamaica. In 2007 he toured the United Kingdom performing at the Royal Academy of Music and the Birmingham Day of Percussion. In 2009 he toured through Italy, playing at the Bressanone Arts Center and at the Concino Opera Hall.
In 2011, a trip that forever changed his love of the steel pan, he toured across Trinidad and Tobago. As the Assistant Director of the Steel Band, he was also accompanied by steel pan virtuoso and close friend, Tracy Thornton. His time in the country where the steel pan was born, brought his passion and admiration for the instrument to a whole new level.
Bryan currently performs Steel Pan in the New York metropolitan area and has developed a niche working corporate and private parties, weddings, and festivals.
In 2013 Bryan traveled to China to co-direct the Jim Royle Drum Studio Percussion Ensemble and performed at the 9 Beats Performing Arts Center and the Beijing International School.
In 2015, Bryan traveled to Ireland to give a drum set, percussion, and steel pan clinic at the Royal Irish Academy of Music in Dublin. He then booked a solo tour playing steel pan in Galway at the Roisin Dubh and Sweeneys in Dublin. While in Galway he joined the band My Fellow Sponges and played a sold out show at the An Taibhdhearc Theatre. He then joined them on stage in the Town Hall for the RTE National Irish Radio.
Bryan has met many inspiring individuals along the way that have pushed him forward and gave him a musical road map to follow. He has studied and performed with many great musicians, such as Mike Johnston, Dom Famularo, Will Calhoun, Winard Harper, Mike Clark, JP Bouvet, Joe Bergamini, Liam Teague, Chris Hanning, Memo Acevedo, and Marko Djordjevic.
Bryan is very grateful to be a part of any musical project. He is always looking forward to musical opportunities and will never stop learning and sharing the knowledge of music with others.