Good advice in general, but today I’m specifically referring to vocal harmony parts. One of the weakest areas that I see in worship rehearsals in many churches is the prep of the vocal team.
Part of this is because there are proportionally fewer people in worship leadership that can read music proficiently than in days gone by, but the main reason is that many times the vocalists are simply asked to “find their part,” and are left on their own.
One of the key roles of the worship leader [or music director] is to provide clarity for their team. This starts, of course, by defining the structure of the song. Where in the song are there vocal harmonies? Who sings which part [and is that vocal assignment the same on every song]? Then there needs to be some way to get the actual part across in a way that’s understandable by the worship team vocalists. There are just too many tools available these days to punt on this, including pre-recorded tracks of each vocal part that are available in some cases. Making this one change can sometimes help a team to go from good to truly excellent.
Hmmm - well, let's see...
I'm a Christian, a husband, a dad, a son, a pastor, a consultant, a musician, a writer, and bits and pieces of a bunch of other things. My work life has followed three main phases - business to teaching to church. I was the Weekend Services Pastor for nine years at Northview Church, an awesome church in the Indianapolis suburbs. I used to work for Willow Creek, another awesome church in the Chicago area. Plus I've written for various magazines and websites, and other freelancy sorts of things... My life mission is to help the church be as excellent as it can be.
Oh yeah - the name's Greg. Greg Wallace. But not the race car driver or the major league pitcher or the British celebrity chef. Just the creative worship guy. Hi.
It's my hope that these ideas, musings, rants, raves, etc... will inspire you. They're just my opinions - but again, I hope that they'll help to inspire you. Because the church really, really needs inspired creative types. If you're a creative type (and most people are, deep-down), ask God for help. Then take any ideas that are useful to you - borrow them, nab them, use them, adapt them - and make them into something greater...
You can head over to my Instagram site for an abundance of shorter posts: creativeworshipideas. If you're looking for consulting - especially on weekend services, team leadership or multi-site strategies - I'd love to help. Just message me here, and I'll be in touch - Greg
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