Ever since she was about 2 years old, my youngest daughter has fallen asleep to one song as background noise… Sing, Sing, Sing by Chris Tomlin…  She’s 10 now… a Brown Belt in Tae Kwon Do…  Plays full-contact youth basketball like a mini-Dennis Rodman…  No seriously, like other league parents groan out loud when she’s assigned to guard their kid.  And just to round herself out, she’s now adding skateboarding to her repertoire…  So pretty much your typical girlie-girl…  And she still sleeps to Sing, Sing, Sing by Chris Tomlin…


If you’ve had a chance to serve on worship team recently, you know that we’ve been talking a lot about how we present ourselves on stage and how it impacts our ability to lead worship for our congregations.  There’s an awful lot of different directions that discussion can take, so I’m not going to get too deep here.  What I’d like to offer you is one suggestion that you can both implement immediately and build on from there.  And it will absolutely help change the atmosphere on stage for the better…  So here it is…

SING!!!


Now your first reaction probably ranges somewhere between “I’m just a musician here…” and “Nobody would want to hear me sing…”  Well, you may in fact have a terrible singing voice, but that is totally okay because I’m not talking about singing on mic here.  No one will ever hear you.  And you are definitely more than a musician.  The whole team helps establish the worship “tone” for the congregation.  That’s a lot more than just playing notes & chords.

So before you before you get too much anxiety here, this first part is really easy.  As an electric player on a modern worship team, you will have moments where you will not need to play at all.  These moments are necessary to create dynamics… The highest Highs have to have those contrasting Lows or else it all just washes out in the middle.  So quick SIDEBAR TIP…  Resist the temptation to play in those Low moments anyway…

Instead… You can sing!… Off-Mic and without the pressure of trying to play & sing at the same time.  Its really a simple thing, but it makes a powerful statement to the congregation when the people who aren’t required to sing, sing anyway.  Once you’re comfortable with this, you can consider Step 2…


data

Okay… True Confession Time…

I played guitar for about 16 years and any attempt to play & sing at the same time felt just like this guy.  I thought I was NEVER going to get it.  After seeking advice from a few players I respected, I eventually had a breakthrough.  I broke it down to just Right Hand Rhythm & singing for awhile…  Basically, that looks like driving around in your car, singing & strumming an imaginary guitar.  But left hand on the wheel at all times, because Safety First…  So chord changes were irrelevant.  That took a few months to really get down good.  By the time I added the left hand, everything just sort of fell together.

Now it may not work like that for you, but if you never try, you’ll never know.  I still struggle today sometimes with it, depending on how technical the playing might be.  So playing Lead & Singing is hardest… playing Bass or Rhythm & Singing is easier than that, but still a challenge at times.  Playing Acoustic & Singing is easiest.  But in general, I’m singing on the Choruses & Bridges if its at all possible.  And just know that you will get better with practice.


So I thought it’d be good to end with an example that somewhat ties things together.  As you watch this, try to ignore Jeremy Riddle & focus on what everyone else on stage is doing.  There are moments where Bass is singing… Rhythm is singing…  Keys are singing… Hands are raised… There’s some kind of flag person doing crazy things…

Okay, we might not ever get to that last one, but let’s start the journey & see where it goes…

Advertisements