From Drumming on Pans to Producing Music


Dan D'Alleva

Ryan Hwang recording the vocals for one of his songs.

Ryan Hwang has had a passion for music since day 1.

Recording the vocals for one of his songs, Hwang recently began producing his own music,  just one aspect of his talented musical career. “It’s been cool to see the evolution of my mixing and writing over short periods of time,” Hwang said.

Musical skills are one of the hardest things to have. It takes dedication, interest, and years of hard work. That is exactly what Ryan Hwang has been doing.

Starting from a young age, Hwang always had an interest in music. He didn’t know if he could do anything with it, but he wanted to test his skills.

“When I was about one year old, my parents always found me banging on our pots and pans with wooden spoons. They thought that maybe it was a phase at first, but I continued to show an interest in playing the drums as time went on,” Hwang said.

His parents received a lot of criticism from other parents for allowing him to play the drums. Friends, family, and colleagues all thought he should play something more elegant.

“We had to support him by shielding him from the doubters so he could continue playing the drums,” Hwang’s mom said.

In fifth grade, Hwang began taking drum lessons. He moved into middle school with a desire to take his musical skills to the next level. 

Image of: Behind The Music

Hwang joined a musical program called Berklee Preparatory Academy in Boston. He was able to develop rhythm, which showed him new opportunities within music.

“In addition to theory, performance, and drum classes, I had to take production classes as a part of the curriculum. It wasn’t a choice I had, but it was one of my favorite classes.”

“We had time to experiment in GarageBand which led me to teach myself how to produce at home,” Hwang said.

While learning new skills, Hwang involved himself in many different bands and began opening up to many different genres. He joined the jazz band in middle school. Although having no interest in it, in the beginning, it allowed him to diversify his music. 

Hwang began showing his music to the world by uploading music videos onto Youtube and participating in school talent shows. Although a small channel at the time, he drew the attention of many of his friends, including Adam Glace.

“He was [at] the talent show and had neon lights under his drum set. He played amazing songs and hyped up the crowd. It was unforgettable.” 

“He always makes time to progress and become both a better drummer and music maker,” Glace said.

Moving into high school, Hwang started full-time producing music. He collaborated with other young artists to record vocals and he produced the music. Every song he makes takes weeks of recording, editing, and perfecting. 

“I’ll spend hours trying to perfectly mix vocals I recorded to make sure certain syllables come through or take days experimenting with reverb settings for a kick drum sample.”

“All the time spent is 100% worth it on small details when I hear them in the final mix with everything else,” Hwang said.

Last year, after contemplating it, he released his first own song, “The Necklace”. The song was well received by the public. People reposted the song and it fueled Hwang to continue releasing his music.

“Receiving such positive reception on the song was amazing,” Hwang said.

In just a few years, he went from only playing drums, to producing, writing, and releasing his own music. 

“I was surprised that he was writing music and that he had the guts to actually sing it instead of getting someone to record the vocals. This was when we became aware of his capabilities as an artist, Hwang’s mom said.

Hwang has been working on multiple songs he hopes to release in the coming year. His goal is to make songs that people can relate to. He believes that making connections with others through music is the most important thing an artist can do.

“I want to be a part of people’s ‘life soundtracks’.”

“The reason I started making my own music was so I could help other people with what they’re going through based on my experiences expressed through melodies and words,” Hwang said.