Canadian drum and percussion product designer, inventor and educator Ronn Dunnett is one of the most renowned and prolific names in the drum and percussion industry. Dunnett owns and operates two major drum brands - Dunnett Classic Drums and the George Way drum company. He started his namesake company in 1989 while living in Australia where he began work on designing metal drums including the world’s first Titanium drum shell. The drums Dunnett created garnered the attention of many artists and the respect of industry manufacturing leaders, and to date Dunnett holds 10 US patents.
Dunnett's entry into foster care at the age of 13 eventually lead him to music lessons and a set of poorly maintained off brand drums which he immediately began work on and making improvements to. By the time he was 16 he was living on his own, attending school and studying music. He joined a touring band and recorded with several Canadian bands until the age of 27 when he relocated to Vancouver to continue his career in music, and also began a career in photography studying with some of the city’s most famous commercial and fine art photographers. His work in photography gained the attention of Playboy and was published in international publications such as PHOTO.
In 1989 Dunnett’s career in photography lead him to relocate to Australia for a year. While there, a failed part on a mountain bike lead him to discover the sonic properties of titanium. When he returned to Canada he re-established himself as a drummer. Shortly thereafter a series of events lead him to the backlot of aircraft manufacturer Boeing where he purchased his first sheets of titanium, with which he crafted his first prototype snare drum shells. After nearly 30 years Ronn Dunnett has worked with virtually every major drum brand, having created and manufactured products for and with Ludwig, Slingerland, Drum Workshop, Gretsch, Tama, Sonor and James Trussart. His drums are owned by many of the world’s most famous names - Dennis Chambers, Neil Peart, Carter Beauford, Steve Gadd, Will Calhoun, John Tempesta, Jason Sutter, Billy Cobham and Todd Sucherman to name just a few. He has also worked very closely with Stanton Moore, Grego Borlai and Carter McLean creating signature products and brands under their names. Dunnett’s work has also inspired many other independent drum manufacturers, some of whom he mentors. In many ways Dunnett’s life parallels that of the world’s most prolific drum and percussion product designers, George H. Way. By chance in 2006 Dunnett acquired the rights to the George Way trademark and quickly began worked re-establishing that heritage brand to its current status and popularity. Throughout his career Dunnett has received many industry accolades and awards for his original designs. In 2016 Dunnett was awarded the coveted International Titanium Association’s Development Award for his work using Titanium. Always opinionated and outspoken, Ronn has compiled his years of experience and expertise into an ever-evolving workshop program that often involves teaching students the art of drum building.