Category: TWIST

In my mind, what makes a great church band is one that both understands the idiosyncrasies of playing in a band with fluid membership, and short and frequently-under-cooked rehearsals, yet also recognises the need to share the common vision of serving the congregation as they join together in one voice to praise their great God in the assembly of his people.

For this reason, I want to TWIST the arm of the congregational leaders in our churches. I want to TWIST the arm of the rectors, assistant ministers, wardens, and anyone who has a key role in our churches.

I want to TWIST your arm to encourage your church musicians to be a part of one of the TWIST (‘The Word in Song Together’) music events this year run by Emu Music and Youthworks.

To read the full article, click here.

For more details about TWIST, click here!

At this year’s TWIST Away Conference on Friday 19th August to Sunday 21st August 2011 at Port Hacking, we’re focusing on getting the bare essentials right.

As we put together the various hands-on training seminars, I’ve been trying to reflect on what the various issues are that our everyday, garden-variety church bands need to grow in.

Have a read of my article to see my list, and feel free to add any suggestions in the comments, or email me directly.

Here’s the link:

Plus, if you’re keen to find out more about the conference, then visit for the details. It will be a great weekend of encouragement plus practical training in music ministry.

As a result of many attempts to ‘contemporise’ our services of corporate worship, we have ended up with a casserole of theology and a soup of subjectivity.

Yet, attempts have not gone smoothly as we have sought to restore liturgy to its rightful place as a common word from a common people. There is still resistance to having our prayers pigeon-holed and pre-fabricated by prayer book poets.

Ironically, our latest generations are happy to sing pre-written words and tunes with feverish repetition, but are not comfortable speaking pre-written prayers. Even praying prayers from the Bible is seen as rigid and uninspiring.

Yet, if people are happy to express their feelings to God through pre-written song words, then why are they unhappy to express their feelings to God through pre-written prayer words?

Read the full article at

I have found, especially through my youth ministry experience, that it is well worth the investment in time to help a group get to know each other at the start of a session or event. Whether it’s a youth group evening, or a leader’s training event, it’s worth making the time to have a ‘mixer’.

Read my latest article to see three mixers I’ve done to death, but still work just fine.

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.

Read my full article at and leave a comment!