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LHI Live: Minor Element Fuses Ambition, Improv In Music

Craig Freeman

Keyboardist Brandon Fitzpatrick and guitarist Braulio Green, who grew up gigging together in Battle Creek, MI, are the visionaries behind Minor Element: an ambitious, 9-piece jazz fusion group that has just released its first EP, Stranger Things Have Happened.

 The group recently joined WMUK's Craig Freeman in the Takeda Studio at WMUK for a live performance and a conversation that included Fitzpatrick and Green, as well as drummer Anthony Tyler and trumpet player Sam Gustavson. 

Finding themselves the go-to musicians for school and business events, Braulio and Fitzpatrick, who studied music theory at Kellogg Community College with Dr. Mark Wells, soon decided to push their boundaries and form an instrumental group along the lines of Snarky Puppy.  They recruited a number of advanced musicians who were comfortable with improvisation, and began writing music that was as challenging as it was satisfying to play. 

On the songs "Big Fella," and "5D," we hear Brandon Fitzpatrick and Tom Ryberg, keyboards; Braulio Green, guitar; Quinn Blakeney, saxophone; Trent Sanchez and Sam Gustavson, trumpets; Troy Robertson III, bass; and Anthony Tyler, drums. 

Part 2 of an interview with members of Minor Element, including a performance of the song, "5D". Audio engineer: Martin Klemm.
The broadcast edit, as heard on "Weekend Let's Hear It."

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Cara Lieurance is the local host of NPR's All Things Considered on 1021 WMUK and covers local arts & culture on Let's Hear It on 89.9 Classical WMUK weekday mornings at 10 - 11 am.
As Chief Engineer for WMUK, Martin Klemm is kept busy by tending to a variety of issues - from computers to tower lights - he will never run out of things to fix. Before coming to WMUK in 2003, Martin worked in Los Angeles making records with some outstanding producers, but preferred to be close to his family here in west Michigan. He enjoys keeping a busy schedule balancing WMUK, loving on his friends' doggos, and remodeling his home in the Edison neighborhood (which never seems to end)
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