Detroit-based group Rela Percussion is unlike any quartet working in music today. The group is dedicated to exploring the styles and textures of all percussion instruments through the performance of contemporary percussion literature, world music, modern jazz, electronic and original music. By utilizing the marimba, vibraphone, steel pan, congas, drum set, tabla, and many other instruments in original compositions and standard repertoire, Rela has cultivated a new concept of what it means to be a percussion quartet.
Patrick Fitzgibbon is a percussionist with experience and training in world music, jazz, and classical traditions. Patrick attended Michigan State University where he earned a scholarship from the school of music and studied under Alison Shaw, Jon Weber and David Hall. After graduating in 2005, Patrick travelled to India to volunteer at Shanti Bhavan boarding school as well as study tabla under Rahul Pophali. He then spent time traveling the world on Norweigan and Holland America Cruise Lines as a show band drummer. After a semester at the California Institute of the Arts studying with Randy Gloss and David Johnson, Patrick returned to Michigan to attend Oakland University where he earned a Masters in Percussion Performance studying with Mark Stone. Located near Detroit, Patrick keeps a busy schedule performing throughout the city as well as running his own steel drum ensemble that performs throughout Michigan. His original compositions are performed by percussion quartet, Rela, and can also be heard in promotional materials for Ford, Bosch Automotive, and theDetroitJournal.com. Patrick currently serves on the music faculty of Oakland University where he teaches the Steelband and courses on world music.
Drew Parent is a versatile percussionist, music educator, clinician, composer and arranger. His experience includes teaching and performing in a variety of percussion areas including drumset, mallet percussion, orchestral percussion, marching percussion, and improvisation. He has lived a life rich in musical exploration starting at the age of seven with piano lessons followed by guitar, bass, saxophone, and finally percussion. Drew holds a Bachelors in Music Education from Saginaw Valley State University, a Masters of Music in Percussion Performance from Central Michigan University, and a Specialist Certificate in Jazz Improvisation from Berkley College of Music Online. Currently Drew teaches at Percussion and Music Theory at Owens Community College, instructs local High School and Middle School percussion ensembles and drumlines around the Toledo area, and maintains a full private teaching and recording studio. He also performs regularly with regional orchestras, jazz groups, bands, and solo artists.
Thom Monks is an active freelance drummer, percussionist, and teacher in the Detroit Metro area. He has worked actively as a musician since his first professional gig at 14. Thom holds Bachelor's Degrees in percussion performance and music education from Central Michigan University. He can often be seen playing in many different venues from local bars, to churches, theatres, festivals, and even Detroit's Orchestra Hall stage. Performing has taken Thom many places across the U.S. including New York, Los Angeles, Austin, Orlando and Chicago.
Mike List is a globalized percussionist based out of Detroit, MI playing both western and non-western instruments from around the globe. Mike has performed in a variety of musical settings including rock, jazz, classical, contemporary art music, percussion solo, and world music fusion ensembles. He currently works with the Mediterranean fusion ensemble ‘Wisaal’, marimba/world percussion duet, ‘To Hit.’, and percussion quartet ‘Rela’. Mike holds a Master of Music and Bachelor of Music in percussion performance from Central Michigan University and has also studied tabla, mbira, and Arabic percussion. Along with performing, Mike teaches privately and works at Oakland Community College teaching courses on the ‘History of Rock and Roll’ and ‘World Music.’