Date of Award

Winter 12-2021

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA)



Committee Chair

John Wooton

Committee Chair School


Committee Member 2

Chris Goertzen

Committee Member 2 School


Committee Member 3

Joe Brumbeloe

Committee Member 3 School


Committee Member 4

Danilo Mezzadri

Committee Member 4 School


Committee Member 5

Richard Perry

Committee Member 5 School




The process of applying pickups to acoustic vibraphones began in the early twentieth century in order to provide means of amplification for live performances other than the use of microphones alone. Artists and innovators in the industry quickly realized the possibilities of adding effects, such as tremolo, reverb, delays, and other sound processing devices, to create a pallet of sounds not possible on an acoustic vibraphone. This concept applied to modern signal routing, yields a copious amount of sonic possibilities, extending the creative universe of the performer.

Due to the amount of technology involved with the electric vibraphone, it is critical the performer has a working knowledge of live sound reinforcement techniques, analog signal processing, gain staging, along with proficiency in MIDI and non-MIDI software applications, in order to achieve the best results. The use of effects on the electric vibraphone presents a unique set of challenges: most effects utilized are designed for guitar, thus the performer must be aware of not only the types of effects, but how to perform with them.

The purpose of this study is to identify the strengths and weaknesses of different signal routing possibilities, discuss effects classification and application and to provide a composition for electric vibraphone and percussion ensemble entitled Put the Pedal to the Metal, that highlights the electric vibraphone as a solo instrument.

From this study an individual should ascertain the information needed in order to achieve optimum results with this instrument and obtain skills needed to utilize effects appropriately.