Originally hailing from Brockport, NY, Michael T. Balonek holds a Masters' Degree in Ethnomusicology from Bethel University (St. Paul, MN). This degree took him to Sri Lanka and India where he studied local music, specializing in indigenous drumming. In 2011, Mr. Balonek published the first ever lesson book for the Thammattama - one of Sri Lanka's drums ("Sri Lankan Drumming: The Thammattama"). Prior to studying ethnomusicology, Michael received his BM in Music Education from the Crane School of Music at SUNY Potsdam (NY). At the time of his most recent publication ("Musical Contextualization and the Sinhala Church"), Michael and his wife Amanda (to whom he owes many photo credits) have two sons, Micaiah and Samuel, and are currently (as of the writing of this bio) living in India.