It has become apparent to me that many church music teams play in a similar way to an under-eight soccer team.

All of the melody instruments (such as flutes and violins) usually play every verse, and they often play the same melody line as the congregation is singing. The rhythm instruments (such as acoustic guitar and bass) play with the same intensity throughout the entire song.

A better music team will play like a high-school soccer team. The melody instruments will sit back in some verses and be silent, whilst at other times they will feature strongly. Sometimes they’ll play the same tune as the congregation, but sometimes they’ll compliment the tune by playing basic harmonies. The rhythm instruments will feel happy to be ‘subbed off’ for a verse or two, and then warm up as they reach the intensity of the final stages before the final siren blows (so to speak!)

This mindset shift makes a powerful impact on a church band. It’s not impossibly difficult to achieve, but it does take a commitment by all members to not all just run around the paddock, chasing the ball.

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