Dylan A. Bassett

Dylan Bassett
  • Lecturer, West African Drumming

Contact Info



Dylan Bassett is a percussionist, composer, and teacher. Over the past 30 years, Dylan has performed throughout the U.S and in Guinea, Ghana, Brazil, Cuba, and Senegal with a score of talented musicians/groups including Giba Conceição, Mario Pam, Louie Bellson, Karrin Allyson, Chris Hazelton, Sekou "Balandougou" Keïta, Souleymane Faye, Babara Bangoura, Balandougou Kan, Bolokada Conde, Luisito y Son Cuba, Choro au Jazz, Mads Tolling, Sapes Highlife Band, Quixotic Performance Fusion, and many others. 

In 2023, Dylan was named to the Fulbright Specialist Roster for a tenure of three years.  Individuals are selected for the Specialist Roster based on their knowledge, skills, and ability to make a significant contribution to overseas projects, with the goal of bringing back their expanded knowledge to their U.S. institution.  Dylan was also awarded a Fulbright Specialist Grant to teach, perform, and study percussion in Salvador, Brazil in June and July 2023. During this residency, Dylan performed with Tambores do Mundo; Conceção, Bassett, & Pam Trio de Percussão; and the Sacramento/Bassett Duo, and direct Grupo de Percussão da UFBA at the internationally recognized percussion festival, the Festival de Percussão 2 de Julho. 

Over the past 30 years, Dylan has studied percussion in Brazil, Cuba, Ghana, Guinea, Senegal, and the U.S. with Mamady Keïta, Sekou “Balandougou” Keïta, Famoudou Konate, Giba Conceção, Mario Pam, Mustapha Tettey Addy, Massala Mbaye, Leo Moré, Assame Diouck, Ray Castrey, Johnny Vidacovich, Stanton Moore, Jim Chapin, and Louie Bellson. In 2022, Dylan received grant funding to travel to Morowaya, Guinea to notate and record djembe and dunun rhythms as performed by internationally acclaimed djembe artist, Bolokada Conde.  Dylan and Conde are co-authoring a forthcoming book on traditional drumming from the Sankaran region of Guinea. 

Dylan is currently a lecturer in percussion at the University of Kansas School of Music and the director of the KU West African Drum Ensemble. Under his direction, this ensemble won the Percussive Arts Society’s 2017 World Percussion Ensemble Competition. Dylan’s twenty years of teaching experience also include work with the Federal University of Bahia, University of Northern Colorado, Washburn University, Missouri Fine Arts Academy, Drury University, Webster University, Missouri State University, the Missouri Arts Council, and the Americana Music Academy.  In his own percussion studio, Dylan teaches private lessons in drum set, snare drum, keyboards, congas, djembe, orchestral and marching percussion, as well as traditional West African, Cuban, and Brazilian drumming styles. He has received numerous teaching awards over the years.

In Lawrence, Kansas City, and the midwest, Dylan regularly performs with SUNU (8-member funk band), Bemsha (jazz quartet), the Dylan Bassett Percussion Trio, Son Venezuela, and Balacobaco do Brasil. 

Dylan holds a Bachelor of Arts in Music from Missouri State University and a Master of Arts in Global and International Studies with emphasis in West African percussion from the University of Kansas.  In addition to receiving a Fulbright Specialist travel grant, Dylan received Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellowships to study at the University of Kansas and Gaston Berger University, Senegal. 

Dylan is currently completing a book on djembe music from West Africa with master drummer, Bolokada Conde. 





  • djembe
  • dunun
  • odonno
  • tama
  • sabar
  • kpanlogo
  • kalangu
  • drumset