Liam Ryan was born and raised in Christchurch, New Zealand. He made his name as keyboardist and songwriter with Kiwi band The Narcs in the 1980s (You Took Me Heart and Soul, Diamonds On China). He has featured as a session player on many New Zealand recordings and has toured as a sideman with international artists including Charlie Musselwhite, Long John Baldry and Robben Ford.
He has two solo albums – Mississippi To Mauao ( 2007) and Pacific Riviera (2010) released on his IMNZ label, Torch Music. In 2016 Ryan released an EP The Ryan Dickson Line, with fellow Narcs co-writer Andy Dickson. He currently plays with The Narcs, The Sou’Westers, The Blue Riders and with Doors tribute outfit The Lizard Kings NZ.
Since 2002 Liam has been involved with National Jazz Festival Tauranga as former Director, Artistic Director and now as Director of the National Youth Jazz Competition. In August 2017 he was awarded Life Membership of the Tauranga Jazz Society.
He has been a columnist and reviewer for Fairfax Media and continues to research and write articles about music. His Masters Degree researched The Rise of Rhythm and Blues in Christchurch 1960 -1970.