My Worship Pedalboard

Every so often I get asked in the comments what kind of gear I use on a Sunday morning. While certain things change from time to time, I’ve been consistent over the years with a Fender Telecaster and a Tube Amp (currently my beloved Benson Monarch.)

Below is a quick rundown of my main rig. It’s a rig made up of compromises. Since it’s not the biggest in size, I can’t have everything I want, so these pedals are compromises that allow me to get the sounds I need within the constraints I have set before me.

Continue reading “My Worship Pedalboard”

Backing Tracks: What I use and How I Got There

What I use and How I Got There

Multi-tracks, Backing Tracks, and Pads have become more and more mainstream in music in recent years. It’s not just in the church, but its not uncommon to go to shows and concerts and see well known bands with Pads or Backing Tracks going on in the background. I remember 2004 hearing it with Coldplay and over the next few years later I started noticing it with smaller bands in at clubs in the Seattle area.

Programs like Abelton and the easy of Apple’s Garage band have put this technology in the hands of church musicians as well. But it’s not just the mega-churches that are doing this. Walk into churches of ranging in size from 50-150 and you could easily hear some form of backing track going on.

I started using ambient Pads in the background about 6 months ago. I want to walk you through my process, how I got here, and why I use what I use.

Continue reading “Backing Tracks: What I use and How I Got There”

Spring Q&A: What’s the Best Thing and Other Questions

Every so often I look over the search terms from engines like Google and Yahoo that lead people to this blog and turn them into a sort of Q&A. This one is pretty guitar and musical gear heavy but hopefully it’s helpful to someone. (warning, if some of my comments seem like I’m being snarky, it’s because I am 🙂 )

Continue reading “Spring Q&A: What’s the Best Thing and Other Questions”

Should I Use Effects With My Acoustic Guitar

Honestly, I wish this was the question being asked. Should I? But the question is usually phrased more along the lines of “which effects should I use?” This assumes that any should be used at all.

To that end, I want to first ask the question “should I?” and use that to answer the “which ones?” question.

Continue reading “Should I Use Effects With My Acoustic Guitar”

The Electric: Boss Vs Boutique

Boss effects pedals is the Ford Motor Company of the musical world. The Ford Focus is a great car, the Escape is incredibly popular, and the F-150 is an American institution. Yet on Car magazine covers and wall posters it’s the Ferrari’s, Lamborghini’s and Porches’ that get all the love. The same is true with Boss pedals. The RV-5 is a iconic reverb sound found on records from all across the musical spectrum, yet Strymon get’s all the love. What’s the difference between Boss vs boutique pedals and how should affect how I spend my gear money?

Continue reading “The Electric: Boss Vs Boutique”

4 Reasons To Avoid The Imitation Trap

WHAT IS THE IMITATION TRAP?

I noticed the trap in pulpit ministry before I saw it in music ministry. Young preachers imitating older or better known preachers. Cadence, vocal pitch, even attempting to mimic the humor or jokes, and sometimes just outright stealing stories and analogies employed by the preacher they obviously admired.

The same thing is true in music ministries and if you’ve been around long enough you’ve probably seen it yourself. Churches whose bands play note for note everything exactly like it was off the record. The singer who is obviously trying to be Kim Walker-Smith or the worship leader who is shouting things because he heard Matt Redman do it.

The Imitation Trap is seeing the success of someone else, and assuming that this is the way that you have to do it. To judge your success not on what God has called you to do, but on how others live out their callings. I want to present four reasons that we as worship leaders should avoid this trap at all costs, and a positive alternative to imitation that might just be a way forward for you, and your ministry.

Continue reading “4 Reasons To Avoid The Imitation Trap”