Over the course of the last year, I’ve become somewhat active in multiple different Facebook groups for worship leaders & church musicians. In this time, I’ve been surprised by how many posts there are asking the same questions. Simple questions like, “what key should I sing this song in”, or “what are some good songs that focus on the heart of God”. It seemed like every time I looked at one of these groups, a similar question was being asked. This showed me that many people are looking for guidance when it comes to worship leading.
If there are 20,000+ people in a group asking questions and seeking to learn more about their craft, there must be a few music directors like myself that have some questions, or desire to get better at their craft. Right? Continue reading “Worship Music Directing Community”
If you’ve been serving in worship ministry for any length of time, you’ve experienced what God can do when we trust him to move in our services. Watching how the holy spirit moves during a time of worship can be the most fulfilling thing. We all strive for this atmosphere in our churches every week.
Sometimes these moments are more powerful than others. When we do our part to be ready for them, the potential for greatness increases dramatically. But how do we prepare for them? How to we know when they’re happening? And how do we respond to what God is doing in the room? Continue reading “Serving the Moment”
Keep your mind on the goal.
Anticipation is an absolutely necessary trait for a Music Director. For some it is natural, and for others not so much. Even if its a difficult thing for you, it is something worth improving on.
When you’re MDing a service live, it is crucial to pay attention non-stop from beginning to end of the service. This is a difficult task. It means you cannot completely let go and just worship. This seems like a very negative thing, but what you’re doing makes a much greater difference when you look at the big picture.
Continue reading “Focus & Anticipation”
As a worship guitarist, I have two options when I play at a church service.
1. I can come prepared, play my parts well and finish the service.
2. I can come prepared, come full, hear from God and change the atmosphere in the room.
Both options are good but one is truly great.
But wait… shouldn’t I be changing the atmosphere merely by playing my parts? Is there really a difference between the two?
Coming prepared for a worship experience should be in the top category on our priority list as musicians. However, causing a shift in the atmosphere of a room takes a bit more attention. Continue reading “Reflecting the Sounds of Heaven”
Let me walk you through a situation that I encountered earlier this year..
Church pre roll is on and as a band we’re waiting back stage to come out onto the stage and start our service. We usually have about 1.5 -2 minutes to get tuned up and prepare for service while pre-roll video is finishing up. In that time I make sure the team is ready and call for the drummer to prepare to start the track. At this point we have about 7 seconds before blackout and start of the service. I call to start the track so its playing by the time pre roll is over.
The next thing I see is one of the worship leaders who happened to notice there was something wrong ran over to me and signaled the computer isn’t working and we don’t have a track. We were playing Real Love by Hillsong Y&F so obviously we cant play that without a track considering there are approximately 14,586 synth layers and drum effects we would be missing.
Its go time. What do I do? We have a back up song but this is a very young & new drummer and he might not know how it goes. Another second goes by. We have to get going. I need to make a call.
Continue reading “Avoiding a Train Wreck”
You’re playing through the final chorus of your church’s favorite song. Usually you’d bring it down at the end but the congregation is worshiping powerfully and you know God isn’t done with this moment yet. You take a step back in between lyric lines and signal to your drummer to go back in to the bridge.
You sing out the last few words of the chorus very strong and prepare to keep things going. You take it up to 11 and really power into your churches favorite bridge. Anddd….. the band ends the song… But you’re still going and man are you ever committed. You’re already 4 words into the bridge and strumming your acoustic guitar like you’re trying to kill it. Sometimes these “failed” moments can be powerful but the way this one unfolded it was far from powerful. Powerfully awkward is more like it.
There was a breakdown in communication.
Your team is great. Its not their fault. You’re great. Its not your fault. It just so happens the drummer wasn’t paying attention when you made a call. And its not his fault either. Its probably the 50th time he’s played this song and you have never gone back into that bridge.
I know… you know where I’m going with this… “Every church needs a Music Director.”
That’s not what I’m saying.
But what I will say is that I believe that moment was supposed to happen. You were sure of it. God was taking your church somewhere.
Continue reading “Why Your Church Needs a Music Director”
Leading with purpose… not power.
To be a successful music director you need to understand the purpose of what you’re doing. First and foremost, you are not a MD so that you can make all the decisions and tell the team what to do. This tends to be a common misconception. You, along with the rest of your team, are there to serve. That is the ultimate goal. You have been placed as your teams MD because you show the skills needed to lead a team. So lets talk about how to move forward in this position.
Serve your Worship Leader’s Vision
As the MD, your first goal is always so serve your Worship Leader’s vision. When you put this at the top of your priority list, it creates a cohesive and positive experience for the rest of your team. A trust is developed when you work with your WL at all times and never against them.
Continue reading “A Music Directors Purpose”