Seven Questions To Help You Plan Rehearsal

Mark Cole shares seven questions you need to ask as your prepare charts for your team:

One of the keys to having an excellent rehearsal is preparing great worship charts. I have found that worship bands frequently go into rehearsals with haphazard charts. No one has taken the time to really think through all the details of the songs. Next level leaders are prepared and a big part of that preparation is working on excellent charts.

There are two main forms of charts: a) the fully notated SAT chart, b) the words and chords only. I prefer the full written out chart because it gives you more details. But whatever charts you use, ask yourself these 7 questions to make sure the charts are clear and well-thought through.

Great advice here for helping to make your worship rehearsals smooth and efficient. Read the whole list here.

The Rest Of The Team

No matter your role or title on the worship team, you’re leading worship. Stephen Miller writes:

There are few things more confusing to me than watching a worship team standing on the platform, and seeing the face of a worship leader who has all of his being in engaged in worship of God. But then as I survey the rest of the team, I see a bass player with a too-cool-for-school scowl on his face or a guitar player with a sheepishly bewildered or bored look on his face. Or a keys player whose face is completely expressionless, glued to a sheet of music.

They are all worshiping the same God, right?

He goes on to share three simple things that everyone on the worship team can do to point the congregation toward Jesus. Check it out here.

How To Kill Your Team’s Culture

Laura Blankenship shares one thing that you can’t allow to become part of your ministry culture:

As a Worship Leader, I’ve come to realize that part of my job description should read, “Defender of Culture”. Because in all reality, creating and keeping a positive culture on our teams only happens with intention. It’s when we get a bit lazy that culture killers can sneak in and start to poke holes in the fabric of our God-centered, positive, encouraging, and honest culture.

Let’s really talk about a culture killer that runs rampant through the church world.

Gossip…

Laura lists three ways that gossip will wreck your ministry team in a hurry. Check out the full post here.

Tearing Down The Wall Of Voices

Jon Nicol explains some of the sonic problems that can occur when everybody on the team is singing the whole time:

After I finished preaching and was driving home, I thought about why that musical worship experience made me want to curl up in the fetal position under the pew with my hands over my ears.

Was it too long? Well, I’ve participated in and led longer worship times than that.

Was it the song choices? They weren’t all to my liking, but that’s OK. My musical tastes aren’t the North Star of worship music.

I finally landed on it. It was the constant barrage of vocals.

He explains why the “wall of voices” happens and how to make it better. Check it out here.

Five Ways To Help Your Vocalists

Sherri Gould on the most effective ways to lead your worship vocalists:

There are lots of folks out there serving as worship leaders in their local churches. Most of these people are hard working volunteers serving others out of love and devotion. I would also venture to say that most, if not all, would love to ably serve and care for their teams. In the interest of helping to that end, I’ve come up with a few extremely important things that many worship leaders, team leaders or music ministers often miss when leading their own teams.

She lists five things every worship leader should do for the vocalists on the team. Check it out here.

New Songs: A Two-Fold Approach

Branon Dempsey shares his two-pronged strategy for introducing new songs into his church’s worship catalog:

When introducing new songs there is a two-fold process in Rehearsal and in the Service. How do you do it?

Here are a few ideas I’ve learned in what to do and what not to do.

Psalm 149.1 says: “Praise the LORD. Sing to the LORD a new song, his praise in the assembly of his faithful people.”

The Bible makes this a command: sing to the Lord a new song. As we learn new songs as leaders, we also are to help the church learn them as well.

The difficulty is that most congregations don’t get it the first time. It may take a few rounds + a little patience on your part. In the end, your church will be singing full as long as you make it simple. Here’s a few things I do to prepare my team and church when teaching new songs…

Great advice for teaching a new song to your team and to your congregation. Check it out here.

Post-Easter Team Care

The music is planned, the videos are queued up, and the lights are ready. But how is your team?

Greg Atkinson reminds us how important it is to take care of your team before and after a major service:

But here’s the real question: How do we still have a team going forward after such a stressful and busy season as Easter?

Here are some thoughts:

We live in a digital world. Texting, IMing, Facebook pokes, Instagram posts and daily tweets – it’s truly a whirlwind when it comes to communicating these days. Call me old-fashioned, but I’ve found that a personal touch still goes a long way (yes, even in 2016).

Greg shares three ways to make a personal connection with your team and show them their value after a big production, although it’s good advice any time of year. Check it out here.

Four Tips For Great Rehearsals

Mike Harland shares some important elements of a solid rehearsal time:

It could be a choir, vocal team, orchestra or band – but a few solid goals for your rehearsals can make them go better, accomplish more, and build confidence in the teams you lead…

If you will do these four things, you will grow your ministry and people will trust you with this investment of their time. This will be the best recruiting campaign you can ever have in your church.

He shares four tips for staging a rehearsal that builds your team and gets more done. Read the whole thing here.

Be An Awesome Worship Guitarist

Chris Davis shares a great list of tips on how to be a really effective worship guitarist. It’s not just about pedals and swells and dotted eighth delays. It’s about contributing to the team and congregation.

Here’s a sample tip:

Do your homework before you go to worship rehearsal. Make sure you know your specific parts and tones when you show up. This is common rehearsal etiquette, but I am always surprised by the number of guitar players who think worship rehearsal is the appropriate time to learn the song. Don’t be that guy. Show up prepared. As you grow in your skill, the time needed to prepare will become less and less. However, this may take a major investment of time in the beginning.

Here’s a tip on the value of silence:

Silence is golden. Sometimes the best guitar part you can play is no part at all. Many guitarists feel like they have to be playing all the time. This should not be so. In the Mid-Cities Worship song, “Closer,” the electric guitar part (aside from some random swells) does not even start until almost three minutes into the song!

Also, “be quiet” could apply to playing during rehearsal moments. Don’t noodle on your instrument while people are working out parts, talking, etc. This is bad rehearsal etiquette and is quite honestly just annoying.

If you play guitar for worship, you need to check out this list of tips here.

The Audition Process

Magoo Del Mundo takes a look at the process of worship team auditions:

A standard practice done is to hold open auditions wherein interested individuals come and play or sing one song of their choosing and one audition piece. The individual is then assessed based on their performance and delivery. In the event that the person auditioning (is auditioneer even a word?!) makes the benchmark, they are usually integrated into a team. In some cases (as arbitrarily determined by skill level shown), the new member may be asked to attend a few rehearsals first to “check commitment” and to “observe” how things are done. Some of the bigger churches require you to be a member of a small group or have a church approved mentor before even auditioning.

And that’s great, because it has worked and continues to work.

However, in my time at the previous church where I worked, I handled the auditions a bit differently.

He describes his own audition process, which is a lot more involved and intentional. You should read the whole thing here. Very interesting post.

What kind of process does your church have in place for worship team auditions?