Ryan began his life of music at age 8 with piano, followed by percussion and drum kit two years after, and guitar at age fourteen. He started at the St. Paul chapter of the School of Rock at sixteen and has played with dozens of bands since, going on to study drum kit at McNally Smith College of Music with Gordy Knutson of the Steve Miller Band. It was there his range expanded from its orchestral, rock, and jazz roots to include world music, funk, hip-hop, and African diasporic music under the tutelage of Dave Schmalenberger and David Stanoch, as well as performing theater piano and jazz guitar. Since 2013 he's been a regular in local theater pits, and currently performs with his band Mild Manner around the Midwestern area.