We had the good fortune of connecting with Kiana Gibson and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kiana, what led you to pursuing a creative path professionally?
My story starts back in Miami. Ever since I can remember, I have always been fascinated by the drums. In Elementary school, I asked the music teacher if I could play the drumset in the class; the response I received was a blank confused stare as if I wasn’t aware of what I was asking. It wasn’t until my freshman year of high school, I signed up for Woodshop and Robotics but instead was misplaced into a music class; the school counselor called me into his office to let me know the robotics class had an opening, and I could switch out of Music class. Little did I know, that one split decision to stay in music class would change my entire life course. I was 15 years old when I started playing drums. I started to grow in popularity around my school and my community. I didn’t own a drum set until my junior year of high school. During my time without a drum-set, I practiced on pillows and air-drummed nearly every second of the day. I was offered to go on tour with a signed Metal band during my senior year of high school, I declined the offer to attend college instead where I studied Business Administration with a minor in music. During my college year, I would fly down to Miami during semester breaks. During those breaks, I would always film drum covers and post them online. In 2016, I entered the “Hit Like A Girl” International Drumming competition, where I was a finalist. After college, I moved to Atlanta where I would gig around the city. It wasn’t until recently I started to pursue a more creative career. Covid-19 disrupted many lives, including mine. I’ve always held a corporate job, it took the pandemic to help me realize I didn’t want to spend the rest of my life attending to a job that only sees me as “Worker X” and not a human being. It wasn’t until recently, I started actively making more drum covers and teaching students how to play drums. Due to not being able to play shows and attend concerts, I had to think outside the box in terms of a long-term career as a musician. Now I am teaching online and growing a fan base for my style of drumming. My most recent Drum Video is BTS – Ugh Drum Remix by Kiki. I look forward to growing my content and connecting with other musicians and music lovers.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I’m a female drummer who loves to incorporate stick tricks in my drumming. I dealt with many negative people who told me I wasn’t good enough, that I would never be as fast or good as the boys. Of course, I ignored it and created my own path for my style of drumming. At the same time, those discouraging comments also fueled me to become better at my craft. My work has gotten big names such as the drummers from Greenday and Twenty-one pilots to notice and like my latest video. If anyone wants to get into playing drums but don’t know where to start I would suggest this… You don’t have to own a drum set to get started, all you need is sticks, a pillow, and some good music to jam to!
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I love the outdoors on a nice day so I would take them to Piedmont park and the beltline. One of my favorite low-key locations is Burbank park in Decatur. I love Korean BBQ so I would also take them to D92 Korean BBQ in Decatur and Five Daughters Bakery in West Midtown. For the evening time I would suggest Ormsby’s and Painted Duck in West-Midtown.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Lil John Roberts the Drummer who always makes himself available when I need professional advice and mentorship.
Other: Tiktok @KikitheDrummer