Archive | —Sound and Tech

Interview with Darius Fong

WorshipGod West 2013: Called to be Faithful is only a few weeks away, and on-line registration ends June 14. I’m excited about the opportunity to bring the conference to the West for the first time. One of the seminar speakers will be Darius Fong, a Grammy-award winning audio engineer whose passion is the Church. He wrote Debtcibel and also founded Audio Must Preach, an independent consultation company that helps churches focus on ministry and stewardship by removing audio related obstacles. In his seminar he’ll be addressing questions to ask before you spend money on sound equipment. Darius graciously took the time to answer a few questions …

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Interview with Doug Gould

Doug Gould will be presenting seminars dealing with sound and tech topics at both West and East WorshipGod conferences this year. Doug has been a veteran of the Pro Audio and Music Technology Industry for almost 30 years, serving in management roles at Shure, Tascam and E-Mu Systems. He has also been a worship leader, musician and tech at various churches for almost as long. At WorshipGod conferences this year Doug will be covering sound basics, lowering stage volume, mixing, and more. His clear, personal, and knowledgeable workshops have served many WorshipGod attendees in the past. I expect this year will be the same. Doug graciously …

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Interview with Derrick Jeror

At WorshipGod East (July 31-Aug. 3), Derrick Jeror will be joining Doug Gould to teach a workshop on “Sound Systems for the Portable and Small Church.” We used Derrick’s company, Housetop Media, for Sovereign Grace Church of Louisville, and we couldn’t be more pleased with the efficient, effective, and excellent way Derrick served us. He worked within our budget constraints and was quick to respond to changes we requested. Derrick took some time to answer a few questions for me so you can get to know him and his topic better. 1. Briefly share your testimony of conversion with us. I came to Christ at 5 years old. An elderly woman in my church …

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Resources for Your Worship Team from WorshipGod11: Leading, Songwriting, Tech

Last August at WorshipGod11 we offered 40 seminars for pastors, musicians, leaders, vocalists, instrumentalists, and tech teams. Today and tomorrow I’m posting the descriptions of a few that might serve you and your team in the coming year. Right clicking on the title will download the MP3, and of course, right clicking on the outline will get you the…outline. Leading Putting Songs Together – Bob Kauflin (outline) Why do you choose the songs you do? What factors go into deciding whether one song is better to use than another? What’s the difference between lyrical flow and musical flow? How can we use songs to effectively care for people’s …

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Treasuring Christ Above All Things

My daughter, Brittany, sent me this video today. It’s by the folks at Desiring God, who excel at using technology in a creative way to draw attention to what’s being said. The content is part of a John Piper sermon set to techno music. Piper addresses the question, “How do we treasure Christ above all things?” which is at the heart of God-honoring worship. This is what we’re seeking to help people do every time we have the privilege of leading corporate worship. …

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The Limits of Creativity in Corporate Worship

At WorshipGod09, CJ Mahaney and I were interviewed by Jeff Purswell on various things we’ve learned over the years about worship. I posted the entire clip of the interview in a previous post. One of the topics we touched on was the place of creativity and excellence when we gather to sing God’s praise. The world around us proclaims unceasingly that God is a creative God. Melodies, harmonies, and  rhythms can be combined in a seemingly endless number of ways to create new tunes to sing to the Savior. Technology has enabled us to do much more, more quickly, and much more effectively for the glory of God and the good of his church. But if …

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How Loud the Worship Team?

Over at Christianity Today, John Stackhouse, Jr. expresses his thoughts on the volume of worship teams in an article called, “Memo to Worship Bands.” He gives five reasons why church music teams should tone down the volume. 1. Cranking up the volume is just a cheap trick to add energy to a room. 2. When your intonation is not very good, turning it up only makes it hurt worse. 3. The speakers in most church PA systems cannot take that much energy. 4. Consider that you might be marginalizing older people. 5. Musicians—every one of them, including the singers—are accompanists to the congregation’s praise. After saying that musicians …

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What a Team Likes in a Stage Manager

I’ve mentioned the blog of our tech director, Dave Wilcox, before. It’s called “Undistract,” which I think is a great name for a blog devoted to the media and technical aspects of a church. Recently Dave shared some thoughts on how a stage manager can best serve a band during rehearsal. The relationship between bands and sound team members can be tense at times, due to misunderstandings, poor communication, and sinful hearts. That’s why I so appreciate Dave highlighting how one new stage manager, Kami, recently did a great job serving the musicians. If you’re in small church, don’t be thrown off by the term “stage manager.” Dave defines …

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WorshipGod08 Seminars Now Available

Over at the Sovereign Grace website, we’ve finally posted 29 WorshipGod08 seminars for you to listen to or download for free. . . . Here’s the list: Band on the Run (Bob Kauflin) Building Bridges: Pastors and Worship Leaders (Bob Kauflin) Caring for Your Sound System (Darryl Wenger) Copyright Law and Church Music: The Eight Keys (Paul Herman) Drumming for Worshipers (Jordan Kauflin) Electric Guitar Workshop (Dave Campbell) Foundations for Bass Players (Don Nalle) Foundations for Keyboardists (Jon Payne) Growing Your Team for the Glory of God (Jon Payne) In-Ear Monitors (Doug Gould) Leading and Caring for …

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A Blog for Using Media in the Church

I recently revisited the blog of Dave Wilcox, the technical director of my home church. He’s made some changes to the layout which make it even easier to read and benefit from. For the past five years, Dave has consistently pursued using media in or meetings with excellence, humility, innovation, and effectiveness, all in a way that seeks to promote the gospel rather than distract from it. Hence the title of his blog, Undistract. He’ll often share review thoughts from a Sunday morning that are both comprehensive and thoughtful, and touch on everything from sound, to video, to lighting. He explains his motivation here: One of the ways that …

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Worship Leaders – Should Sound Teams Recycle Batteries?

Jonathan sent this question in: Several members of my church’s A/V team proposed that we begin using NiCd 9 Volt batteries for all of our wireless equipment, following the thought that our church should be good stewards of God’s gifts and not use alkaline batteries, which can be seen as expensive, wasteful, and harmful to the environment. Unfortunately, because of the energy-leaking nature of NiCd batteries, we are quickly becoming frustrated with their lack of dependability, compared to their alkaline brethren. My question is this: as stewards of not only the audio/visual quality of each service, but also finance and the environment, what are …

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The Perils of Technology

I should have known these things by now. I’m down in Louisville, Kentucky this week, enjoying the privilege of leading corporate worship at the Together for the Gospel conference. About 3000 pastors have gathered to learn about, celebrate, and respond to the central truth around which our unity is built – the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The conference is the fruit of four men who have share a deep and meaningful friendship around the Gospel. Ligon Duncan pastors a church in Mississippi and has significant influence in the Presbyterian Church in America. Al Mohler is president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and is often quoted or interviewed …

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New Blog for Tech Personnel

Dave Wilcox, the technical director from my church has started a blog that I couldn’t recommend highly enough. I’ve known Dave for about seven years, and he’s been on staff here at Covenant Life Church for five years. He completed his degree in 1998 in Audio Engineering and Visual Media Communication at American University and is a man of prodigious gifting. He oversaw the installation of our 1.2 million dollar sound system, and has put together a fairly large sound/video/lighting team of joyful and faithful servants. But what I want to commend to you about Dave is his humble heart to serve the Savior. The first time I met Dave, he was attending …

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Hymnals or Screens?

A while ago, Richard wrote in to ask: “Do you think there is an advantage one way or the other for a congregation to sing from a hymnal and songbook/sheet (so that they are all looking down), or singing from the words on a large screen in the front of the room (where they are all looking up and facing the same direction)?” First, I think that people can sing from hymnals and still be “facing the same direction,” and that you can sing from a hymnal and still be looking up. However, I’m not making a case for using hymnals. Or not using them. Actually, I’m surprised at how strongly people defend one position or the other in dealing with this …

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Should We Can Canned Music in the Church? Pt. 2

Yesterday I shared some of the drawbacks of using pre-recorded music in church services. Can it ever be beneficial? I think so, as long as we’re aware that God is more concerned about the faith in our hearts than the sound of the music. If you’re part of a small church, a small group, or a mission church, you may find the following to be true. 1. Recorded music can encourage people to sing out enthusiastically While I generally prefer the sound of an average musician to a CD, there are times when bad instrumentalists are more distracting than helpful. Of course, as I mentioned yesterday, singing with no accompaniment is certainly a viable …

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