Leading music

Discussion in 'Music Ministry' started by SaggyWoman, Jul 4, 2010.

  1. SaggyWoman

    SaggyWoman
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    In your congregation, do you have a music director that "waves his hand" like a conductor?

    I grew up with that, but I am finding a lot of younger persons did not grow up with someone conducting music, and they ask why is that person waving their hand/s around.
     
  2. jaigner

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    In most non-Baptist traditional circles, the organist leads the congregational singing. It's the easiest and most practical way...if you have a competent accompanist.

    In most pre-1998 Baptist circles, the minister-of-music stood at the pulpit and semi-conducted, which the instrumentalists can't usually see and the congregation can't usually follow.

    In most "modern" forms, there is some chap with a guitar who leads by singing. Not my fav.

    If I'm "leading" music, I prefer to stand with my hymnal and sing. This usually helps give the congregation a good cue as to what they should be doing and when. The tempo, etc., is generally led by the accompanist.

    Of course, I'm usually also playing the piano by necessity. It's not the best way, but you do what you have to do sometimes.
     
  3. Ruiz

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    I lead worship sometimes (about every two weeks) in my church, I do not lead music. I think there is a distinction.

    There are three types of leading that I enjoy and find most appropriate. First, there is the "no leader" approach. A person motions for people to stand and sit but no one is leading except if there is a new song. I love this method as it truly emphasizes congregational singing.

    Right now, I lead worship. In other words, I spend time preparing for the focus of our worship and provide thoughts which lead the church into a greater view of God and helps give a focus as we sing to God. I like doing this because it truly is spiritual preparedness. There is a lot of forethought on worship when doing this and it forces me to truly spend time with God in worship. I have a couple of people who also start us off in singing, which is needful if we sing acapella

    Finally, another way I enjoy is a simple person who leads with a guitar or singing.

    I do not like people who act in a way to draw attention to himself. The focus should be the congregation singing to God, not some person. The best worship leaders, in my opinion, help focus people more on Christ and singing out to God rather than drawing attention to himself.
     
  4. Jon-Marc

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    That's the way I lead the singing--keeping the rhythm with my hands, and I've seen several others o it that way. It lets the people who are watching (very few actually) know when to start singing, when to hold a note, and when to stop. Of course, that works better with a choir than a congregation, but I feel foolish just standing up there and singing without directing--even though I'm not directing anyone really. I have found that even the piano player seldom follows me, and I'm SUPPOSED to be the song LEADER.
     
  5. SBCPreacher

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    I am the worship leader/choir director at my church (along with preaching - kind of busy!). I direct the choir (hand waving and all). I lead worship by setting the tempo for the pianist and singing real loud.
     
  6. Joseph M. Smith

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    I grew up slightly negative about hymn-conducting, but have changed my mind. When I was a pastor, our choir and organist led (much nodding of the head by the organist), and it worked for familiar music. But just get into something new and it was rough!

    Now I am retired from the pastorate and am an organist, and in this church the Minister of Music leads with her hands and her voice both, and it helps especially on newer music. And the console is so placed that I can see her and be on cue. Works well.
     
  7. sag38

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    I lead the worship and choir at my church in addition to preaching. Anyone want to come and lead music in Lower Alabama? I sometimes wave my hands but mostly use my voice to lead the congregation and choir. In choir practice we go over songs until we are sick of them but know them well enough to sing them without the choir really needing my direction. A pet peeve of mine is for a choir to present worship music unprepared. It's bad for the listeners, uncomfortable for the choir, and does not honor the Lord.
     
  8. SBCPreacher

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    Amen! (and Amen! One "Amen" wasn't a long enough answer)
     
  9. Jon-Marc

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    I agree, and two other pet peeves of mine are people who want to sing specials when they can't carry a tune in a bushel basket, and people who CAN sing and won't. One young lady had the most horrid, shrill voice and never sang the correct notes. She was very loud and could be heard above all the others.

    Why is it that people who can't sing want to, and people who can sing don't?
     
  10. FriendofSpurgeon

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    Grew up in church that had the "Music Director" lead the congregational singing -- "turn to page 72 and let's stand up and sing the stanzas 1,2, and 4" (poor 3rd verse that always gets left out) and then he would wave the hands accordingly.

    At our current church, our pianist is the worship leader (very accomplished musician - PhD in Music) and the worship team - usually 3-5 individuals - lead the congregational singing, with the words on the large screens. Here, there is a lot less talking, as the music flows from song to song.
     
  11. Jon-Marc

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    With my eyesight failing due to age and diabetes, I can no longer lead the singing because I can no longer see anything in the songbook--it's just a blur. The only way I can is to hold the book up high in my left hand while directing with my right. No one pays any attention to the directing anyway, and I'm very loud.
     
  12. Gina B

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    He only turns around and does that as needed.

    I do miss that. I've been around music all my life, and the last choir director we had faced us and led like that. This one doesn't. Our school taught us how to lead like that.

    On the other hand, the last one used to make me have to fight to control myself, because he WOULD make faces and they struck me as supremely amusing, and apparently my reactions did the same to him. Some people just have that affect without even trying.

    So I guess either way can be good. It depends on if the person makes exaggerated facial expressions to express himself or not. :laugh:
     
  13. Jon-Marc

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    One time when visiting a church, I was in a foul mood (don't remember why). I told myself, "I am not going to sing." It wasn't long before the enthusiasm and energetic style of leading by the music director had me singing right along with them as I quickly got over my bad mood.
     
  14. Salty

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    Amen - I love that in a (real ) song leader!! :thumbsup:

    With a praise team, (unless professional) they often look at each other and wonder what is next?
    Could be I am just too military - you need to have one person in charge !
    Whats next - don't even have a pastor. Come Sunday morning, whoever wants to preach will just get up and minister that day.
    (why do you think we have a roster for the nursery? )
     
  15. Joseph M. Smith

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    I am reminded of an organ workshop I attended, where the leader told the story of an organist in a large church, playing vigorously along. He shouted to his page turner, "Can you hear them singing?" When the answer came, "Just a little, sir", said organist pulled out another Trompette stop!

    Who are these people who suppose that they should be heard for their much singing? <grin>
     
  16. Gib

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    No arm waving here. Hold the hymnal in my right hand, left hand holdin' on to the pulpit, voice loud and clear.
     
  17. sag38

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    Sound goog Gib, I'm right there with you except I may move around a little behind the pulpit.
     
  18. SHawk

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    Our pastor leads singing in our chuch b/c at the moment we do not have a song leader. He does some arm waving to let us know when to hold notes and what not. Most of the churches I've been to have been the same.
     
  19. Jon-Marc

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    I have made the mistake of joining churches that didn't have a song leader--thinking the pastor would appreciate someone taking that job so that he could concentrate better on "feeding the lambs". However, I was wrong each time. Even though I told the pastor that I had done the song leading for many years and would be willing to do it for him, he continued to do it. After a while, I decided I wasn't needed there and just left.
     
  20. sag38

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    Come to Mobile and we will put you to work.
     

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