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Directors and Staff

Dr. Douglas Morin

Director of Athletic Bands

Dr. Douglas Morin

A native of Indiana, Dr. Douglas Morin is a conductor who enjoys working with bands and teaching musicians. Prior to earning his doctorate, he spent twelve years as an educator in North Carolina where his concert bands, marching bands, and jazz ensembles earned numerous awards, recognitions, and superior ratings. He writes drill for bands of all sizes, from 25 to 300, which is performed in venues from high school football games to the College Football Playoffs. He served as guest conductor, clinician, and adjudicator for ensembles from both the United States and Canada.

Dr. Morin graduated from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music with a Bachelor of Music Education, earned a Masters of Music in Wind Conducting at the University of Southern Mississippi, and completed his Doctorate of Musical Arts in Wind Conducting from the University of Washington. During his matriculation at Southern Mississippi, where he served as Head Graduate Assistant for the Department of Bands, the faculty from the School of Music selected him to receive the Outstanding Graduate Student Award. His conducting teachers include Dr. Catherine Rand and Professor Timothy Salzman. He holds memberships in the National Association for Music Education, Phi Kappa Phi honor society, Kappa Kappa Psi National Honorary Band Fraternity, and the College Band Director’s National Association.

Mr. Joe Murphy

Assistant Director of Athletic Bands


Joe Murphy is one of the top recording tuba and acoustic/electric bass players in the United States having played live and on hundreds of recording projects with artists such as Steven Tyler and AEROSMITH, John Pizzarelli, Michael Bolton, Alison Krauss, Michael McDonald, Vince Gill, Dennis DeYoung (STYX), Kirk Whalum, MercyMe, Steve Tyrell, Steve Green, Larnell Harris, The Fifth Dimension, Bela Fleck and The Flecktones, Victor Wooten, Jeff Coffin, Futureman, Charlie Peacock, Darrell Worley, Brad Paisley, Mike Reid, Connye Florance, David Clydesdale, Camp Kirkland, Perry Danos, Beth Nielson Chapman, Walt Disney World, VeggieTales, the Nashville String Machine, the Nashville Symphony Orchestra, the Nashville Opera, to name a few. Joe has performed on nationally televised broadcasts of Austin City Limits, TNN's Nashville Now, BET Jazz Classics, Crook & Chase, and the NBC Today Show.

    Over the last 20 years, Mr. Murphy has been a Staff Arranger, Brass Caption Head, and music contributor to numerous championship drum corps, college bands and high school band programs nationwide, including DCI Finalist SPIRIT from JSU, Capital Regiment Drum & Bugle Corps, Vanderbilt University, Illinois State University, Louisiana State University, University of Southern Mississippi, University of Arkansas, Siegel, TN HS Band, Brunswick, Ohio HS Band, Niceville, FL HS Band, Adrian, MI HS Band, and dozens of others.

    Joe was the Music/Program Director and Arranger for the Music City Legend Drum and Bugle Corps based out of Nashville, TN (from 2005-2010) and for the Memphis Sound Drum and Bugle Corps out of Memphis, TN (2005). He is now the Music Director and Arranger for the Southern Knights Drum and Bugle Corps, based out of Birmingham, AL.

    Mr. Murphy was the Artist In Residence and Asst. Director of Bands at Cumberland University from 2001-2010. Joe was the featured tuba soloist and member of the United States Air Force Band, Wright-Patterson AFB, OH from 1987-1991.

   Mr. Murphy has recorded on video game soundtracks such as, Call of Duty: Black Ops, Dragon Age Inquisition, Star Wars: Battlefront, Madden 16, Descent, and others. He is the tubaist on the History Channel series: Texas Rising. Joe was recently the tuba player on Vin Diesel's new movie, "The Last Witch Hunter".  

Ms. Cindi Gallagher

Administrative Assistant

Ms. Cindi

Cindi Gallagher has worked at Vanderbilt since 1999. She is a flute and piccolo player and performs at church and with the Vanderbilt Community Concert Band. For assistance with most all band related activities, Mrs. Gallagher is a wealth of information.

Ms. Karianne Dixon

Color Guard Caption Head, Social Media Director

Karianne Bio Picture

Originally from Syracuse New York, Karianne moved to Nashville in 2014 to continue her education at Belmont University, majoring in Audio Engineering and Video/Sports Production. She currently works at Lipscomb University as a broadcast engineer when not at band. 
Karianne has been involved with the Spirit of Gold since 2014 as a member, and as staff since 2016. She has been participating in color guard since 2006 and has taught and worked with various groups between New York and Tennessee. 
In addition to her role as color guard caption head, she also handles social media/marketing for the band, and some aspects of photography. 

Mr. Evan Lyons

SOG Graduate Assistant

Evan Lyons

Evan Lyons from Waukegan Illinois graduated from the Blair School of Music, where he studied trombone with Jeremy Wilson. During his undergraduate studies he performed with the Vanderbilt wind symphony, the orchestra, the Blair big band, various chamber ensembles, the symphonic choir, as well as the Spirit of Gold in the trombone section and the drum line. 

Evan is currently pursuing his masters degree in education as part of Vanderbilt’s five year music education program. He aspires to direct instrumental ensembles at both the high school level and the university level.

Mr. Kenneth Swartout

Battery Caption Head/Arranger


Adopted from South Korea, Kenneth lived most of his life in Colorado. There, he participated in various music groups including the Colorado All State Orchestra and the Blue Knights Percussion Ensemble. Kenneth Moved to Nashville to continue his education at Vanderbilt as a Percussion Performance Major with a Composition Concentration. 

Kenneth’s involvement with the Spirit of Gold includes membership in 2017, and staff from 2018 until now. Outside of Vanderbilt, he is a member of the Boston Crusaders Drum and Bugle Corps, marching as a front ensemble or battery member in 2017, 2018, and 2019. Currently a Junior, Kenneth hopes to continue teaching and writing for marching percussion and drum corps in his professional career.