As a student growing up in the music world, I was always intrigued by the inside the trenches look of musicians and technicians. This blog hopefully will give you that.
If you are not singing, the problem is probably your heart, not the music.
Throughout my years as music director, occasionally, I would hear Christians quietly disparaging their churches music and arts, saying it's too old and somber, or it's too new and loud, or it's just cheesy. And sometimes I can sympathize. It can be frustrating to have songs set too fast or too slow, or other extremes, like a spelling error in the powerpoint presentation—pleez rize 4 ur call 2 wrshp—assembled by the girl who has spent far too much time texting. Ooh, mortal sin! But this obscures a more significant heart issue.
Consider for a moment what happens in your mind when the music at your church does not suit your tastes. Do you quickly withhold your participation? You might say in your head, "That guitar is too loud. How obnoxious....(3 seconds later)....that's it, I'm done singing." Meanwhile, in the band, my monitor mix is messed up, the guitar is too loud, and I can't even hear my own playing.....(3 seconds later).....that's it, I'm playing whole notes for the rest of the song. It takes embarrassingly little to get distracted, preoccupied, and soon abandoning any effort to praise God. The swiftness with which we abandon our effort at praising God is remarkable. It is evidence of a hard heart and a misunderstanding about our role in the Body of Christ. It’s as if we are saying, “God may love me with an everlasting
So consider Peter:
But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. – 1 Peter 2:9
When I emerge from my silent protest, I realize that we are a people belonging to God. And worshiping God is my (our) responsibility; singing loud praises to our Savior in concert with other Believers is a holy duty God has placed on your life. It is not optional. It is something you should be prepared to do at corporate worship every week, whether the music is to your taste or not. You should do it because God is worthy of your praise. He deserves it, whether the music is great or not.
And, I suspect, if you and many others in your local congregation begin to approach church music with this in mind, the music will “magically” improve.
What are we singing these days?
An "essential songs" survey was conducted between September and November 2012 on the internet, targeted at church leaders, choir directors, and pastors, those who regularly select songs for inclusion in Christian worship services. The goal was to compile a list of songs everyone should know, for training and ecumenical services.
A total of 45 people responded. The survey is lacking in scientific rigor, but has value. Christmas songs easily received high vote counts in their season and no votes outside the season. Lenten songs often received as many votes outside their season as in. The overall results shows us that our overall repertoire is, in the grand scheme of things, limited to around 75 to 100 hymns.