the teacher, performer, and creative force behind Backbeat Productions.
With a wide-ranging career that spans the globe, many decades, and a host of disciplines, Brandon Kunka is multi-faceted musician with a love of inspiring others to express themselves through music.
Brandon's love of music began early.
At three years old, he was identifying notes as his mother played piano - and shortly after began a lifelong love of percussion with a (short lived) paper-headed drum kit.
Brandon continued his pursuit of music into high school - where he picked up the guitar and bass and a love for jazz. He went on to complete degrees in Percussion Performance and Music Composition from Georgia Southern University, and a Master's Degree in Percussion Performance from the University of Miami.
Formal education gave way to a varied career - ranging from performing with household names such as Sarah McLachlan and Evanescence, to directing award-winning drumlines and ensembles.
Today, Brandon spends his time teaching at his private studio, performing with a range of projects, as well as recording, producing, and composing original pieces for performances and commercials. He also currently holds the position of front ensemble director and co-arranger for the Georgia Tech Yellow Jacket Marching Band, where he continues to elevate students to greater levels of success.
During his time as Director of Percussion at Cambridge High School (2017 - 2019), Brandon led the marching percussion section to five first in class finishes at various local and regional marching band competitions, as well as a gold division champion in 2018.
Brandon was the Director of Percussion at Roswell High School from 2009 -2017, where he also directed the Roswell Indoor Drumline which, in its second year of existence, was the 2013 SAPA A Class Champion. The percussion ensembles have performed multiple times at the Lassiter Percussion Ensemble Symposium, and have also been a featured guest ensemble with the Kennesaw State University Percussion Ensemble. In 2016, they were selected as one of eleven performing ensembles to perform at the 2017 Georgia Music Educators Association In-Service Conference in Athens, GA.
Under his direction, the Milton Jazz Ensemble opened for the Joe Gransden Big Band on three occasions and was a featured performing ensemble at the 2014 Atlanta Jazz Festival.
Brandon was the front ensemble director for the award-winning Milton Indoor Drumline, who were World Class finalists in the 2011 and 2012 WGI World Championships, and Open Class finalists in the 2010 WGI World Championships.
The Who's Who
Brandon has studied with Ney Rosauro, Annie Allman, Matt Fallin, Bill Schmid, Michael Braz, Shannon Wood, and Wan-Chun Liao.
He has performed with such artists as Evanescence, Lindsey Stirling, Sarah McLachlan, Red Holloway, Tom “Bones” Malone,and Paul Oakenfold, and has toured China as the timpanist with the Hollywood Concert Orchestra.
Brandon currently plays with Stone Tribute Pilots, Butterflies and Hurricanes, Elegant Bachelors, Atlanta Wedding Band, Sick Sad Little World, and the Atlanta Percussion Group.
Brandon is also endorsed by Vic Firth, Incorporated.
When he's not playing
Brandon is an avid Fantasy Football fan and Mexican food connoisseur. He also enjoys spending time with his wife, Audrey, and their two dogs, Charlie and Evelyn.