Ryan McLean was born in Bulgaria and arrived in the States at age 5 speaking only Bulgarian. With school starting shortly, he found one of the fastest ways to learn English was to watch lots of movies and television. Even though he didn’t always understand the words, he found that the music told the story. Little did he know then, how profound and important this experience would be in helping him understand the power of music to “lift a film” and help tell stories.
A life-long musician, McLean pursued a variety forms of music from rock to jazz to classical, and performed as a drummer with many bands throughout the Midwest while still in high school. He also became the youngest recipient of the Semper Fidelis Award for Musical Excellence awarded by the U.S. Marine Corp.
McLean studied songwriting at Berklee College of Music and then went on to Michigan State University where he received his Bachelors in Music with a focus in Jazz Studies as well as a Certificate in Business of Music. McLean also studied Composition at Northwestern University.
Upon graduating, McLean went to New York to do Broadway Musicals but realized after recording in the studio that he wanted to write music for motion pictures.
Following his passion and calling to be a Film Composer, he moved to Los Angeles in 2011 to study Film Scoring at UCLA where he graduated early and “With Distinction.” While at UCLA, McLean studied with Charles Bernstein (Nightmare on Elm Street), and worked as in intern for some of Hollywood’s most well-known composers including Christopher Lennertz (Identity Thief, Horrible Bosses, Supernatural) and Hans Zimmer (Gladiator, Inception, Hannibal).
McLean created Momma Music in 2012 where he continues to score films around the world that have gone to win numerous awards such as the Cannes International Film Festival. He expanded his company in 2018 and created The Secret Floor, where its focus is writing and producing original songs that have the ability to cross over from mainstream radio to the sync world. Currently, he is scoring a film for DreamWorks.