In a lot of ways a worship leader is like a producer. To make a song "musical” you have to consider when instruments come in and out and where the song gets big and soft. To take things to the next level you have to decide what tones, chords and rhythms musicians use.
Lately I’ve notice it’s been hard to hear both the keys and the electric guitar in the mix. This isn’t a volume issue. Or even an eq issue. It’s a Register / Rhythm / Tone issue. If two or more instruments are playing in the same register (or octaves) with the same rhythmic pulse and with similar tone (warm & washy) it may come out as just a blob of sound. Pay close attention during rehearsal and always encourage musicians to listen to one another. Think like a producer!
Here are our songs from Sunday.
Let Every Heart - Bryan & Katie Torwalt
This is a great call to worship song that describes the powerful attributes of God. Our response is in the chorus, “Let every heart, let every soul praise You Lord”. We use a custom MainStage patch for the chirpy, shimmery lead lines although it may be a guitar originally. The recording's key of “A” is a little high but “G” feels good. We lead this one with some backing track support from Multi Tracks.
So Good To Me - William Matthews
I’d love to venture into doing more R&B and Gospel style songs. This is as far as I’ve gotten but it’s a start. The steady beat and punchy chords make this so much fun to play and our Church loves it.
Ever Be - Bethel Music
This is definitely one of my favorite songs right now. I love its description of our relationship to Jesus as His bride. The chorus comes from Psalm 34:1 which works great as a song intro or a verse to display during the song. I have to say if you want to get close to sounding like the recorded version you’ll have to put in some work but it’s well worth it. Some strings and percussion enhancements from the Multi Tracks go a long way. The instruction videos from Worship Artistry are also a great help.
The Everlasting - Fellowship Creative
This is a beautiful song based off of Psalm 27. I love how it sings the Scripture word for word. We do a version quite a bit different from the recording. We use the SPD to trigger drum samples purchased from That Sound all the way through the chorus. At the bridge ("We set our hope on You") we switch to live drums to really build it up.
Good Good Father - Chris Tomlin
This week completed the rotation for introducing this new song. 2 weeks on, 1 week off, 1 week on. Our Church has really taken to it. I added 4 bars (an intro) after the bridge before going into verse 3. This gave the song a much needed pause before it built back up.
What songs do you really enjoy leading right now?