Mullerhead Productions
The Electric Violin!

Picture of my electric violin!
  

I've been playing with the Band of Humans now since 1995. And now play with the Stephanie Hansen Band and Yankee Dogs as well. I love gigging out. Right now it's my favorite thing to do.

For the first 2 years playing w/ the band I had an acoustic fiddle with a Fishman pickup wedged into the bridge. It produced a very accurate and full sound. However, two problems arose. One, the signal output was not strong enough and I fried my amplifier, pushing it to do more work than it was really capable of handling. Two, at bigger gigs where we were outside or in large halls, I could not keep up volume-wise with out major amounts of feed-back (oh so irritating). I decided it was time for an electric violin.

I thought about making one for myself. I looked at what was being made out there. I priced different makes and models. There were some really cool makers. But anything I looked at was too costly for me. So, being a sculptor, I decided to build my own. Boy, was that a bumpy road. I tried one prototype and trashed it. Tried some other ideas and finally came up with some thing that looked like it might work. After some more bumps and kinks, I came up with this shown on the left. There are still kinks in it. But it works and feels great. No feed back, good round warm sound with power that keeps up with the electric guitar and drums, though there are strange overtones because of the type of pick-up and unexpected vibrations from the plastic body. I bought a good Digitech effects board to give a variety of sounds; from distortion to wah to octave effects and delay. I found a pretty good amplifier. I'm using a 400watt GK bass amp. It has enough eq adjustments that I can keep a smooth violin sound.

To get a cleaner sound, I purchased a Zeta 5 string violin with a jazz bridge in 2002. The dry sound was very electronic. I warm up the sound through the digitech RP 20, it's not an ideal a violin sound. But it works really well in high volume situations. The logistics and ergonomics of the Zeta body, however, are very problematic! I won't go into the gory details but suffice it to say that I will be working on more prototypes.

Now it is 2011, my Zeta just died at a gig last weekend. Indeed it is time to figure out a new rig.....

I'll let you know how that goes. I guess it's true what they say, an artist is never satisfied.

Enjoy the site. Feel free to email me with comments, questions, and money making opportunities.

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