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The Trouble With Upbeat Worship Songs

The Trouble With Upbeat Worship Songs

There’s seems to be one issue that plagues every Worship Leader I talk to.  “Why is it so hard to find good upbeat worship songs?”  I’m not totally sure why this is but you may have found yourself thinking something like this when listening to the latest Album opener: 

"I’m not in an arena so this song will feel out of place"

"I don’t have a 15 member team so this song won’t have the same energy"

"I’m not trying to be Mumford & Sons with that 140BPM Irish Jig"

"These lyrics aren’t saying anything substantial"

Fast Rock style songs can feel dated, Folk style songs can feel forced and for a lot of us Gospel style songs are unaccessible.   

In a good way this has made me think very deliberately about the purpose of the first song or two in our worship gathering.  Do they have to be fast?  What purpose do upbeat songs serve?  I’ve concluded that these songs have a very important place in our worship time. 

We should have a desire to CELEBRATE Jesus.  Celebrations aren’t marked by slow tempos and minor keys. 

Singing loudly, clapping our hands, and shouting with joy are all Biblical responses to our God.

It’s good to have fun with the people of God in the Presence of God. 

I used to be discouraged by the lyrical simplicity of most upbeat worship songs but I’ve come to enjoy and embrace this simplicity.  When people are first making their way into the Sanctuary singing lyrics that call us to worship and to praise God are often best.  A good upbeat song begins the process of drawing minds and hearts to the Lord without trying to complete it.  A good upbeat song is in a style that your Church enjoys and your team feels comfortable with.  

Open Up The Heavens (Meredith Andrews)

This song has it all.  An expectancy for God.  A declaration of His centrality.  A prayer for His Glory.  This is a great song to open with.  

Rejoice (Dustin Kensrue)

Maybe our fastest song clocking in at 158bpm and no one could complain this song doesn’t have enough theology.  Start off on the right foot by exhorting your church to Rejoice in Jesus.  “Rejoice! Come and lift your hands a raise your voice, He is worthy of all praise”.  

Jesus! (Citizens & Saints)

Some upbeat songs go their entire four minutes without ever mentioning Who we’re singing to.  Don’t let that happen! “Highly exalted is the Name of Jesus Christ, heaven and earth declare all praise to Jesus Christ”. 

So Good To Me (William Matthews)

An awesome song based on Psalm 40 celebrating our salvation.  This song is full of good vibes.  

The Lights (The Royal Royal)

Here For A Reason (River Valley Worship)

What are some upbeat songs you’re leading?

Any you’re thinking about leading?

Share in the comments below! 

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