Producing Tracks

Acoustic Loops

Producing Tracks

bacnol

over 9 years ago (edited)

I've been thinking about running loops in places where it's just me and the guitar leading worship. Does anyone have any experience with it? Does it add to the worship atmosphere or is it kind of cheesy?
RickBrock

over 9 years ago (edited)

Hi Bacnol, this is something i have done in the past and had a mixed response from the congregation. some find it cheesy, others find it enhances their worship time to your music. A question i asked myself before doing this was.."Do I really really need it?" Worship (in the sense of 'kissing towards the Lord' (a literal translation from the Greek [pros-kuneo] it literally that.... kissing the Lord with words AND actions... There are times when the most anointed times of worship come from a lone voice with no instruments and a real 'heart of worship' from the congregation... So do i need to do this? and if so, do i need to do it all the time? Jeff Goldblum in the film Jurassic Park makes a statement my friends and i quote quite often..... "just because you can do something doesn't mean you should" [or something like that] But, back to your question.... It does add to the worship/praise if the people are expecting it. Absolutely it does. I say 'expecting it' because it can be a big surprise for people if they are expecting simple acoustic and vocal but suddenly have the Royal Philharmonic booming out the PA. - that makes it hard for them to enter into worship/praise initially so warn them it will happen. Also remember, unless you are going to invest in some more equipment then you are stuck with the set arrangement and can not suddenly do chorus chorus chorus with the loop if it just isn;t programmed to do it. I also suspect that, if you play alone, then you are used to flowing as you see the people respond (or not) during the singing. I used to use an RC50 loop station [since then stolen and uninsured!], it had three phrases per patch/song which could be verse / chorus / bridge. I also had an extension pedal which had 'fade stop' on it as well as stop at end of loop option. i could jump on the right pedal at anytime and it would obey my every stomp.... unfortunately it also obeyed my every wrong stomp which had the ability to send the atmosphere of worship running out the door!!!!! when it went well - it went well. when I got it wrong it went very very wrong. One great way i started to get the church used to a bigger sound was to start the meeting by joining in (over the microphone) myself with a 'spontaneously' playing CD at the start of the service. The folks had head Micheal W Smith singing the track twice already as they came into the main hall and on the third time we just started.... by joining in on the chorus. Up went the words on the Projector, up went the volume of the CD and an encouragement to join in was given. some folks still arriving (why is it that some people can never get to church for 10:30?????) others chatting to each other.... but eventually they were joining in. At the end of the 'spontaneous' song we did the official welcome asked a 'did you like that' question and started the service as per standard. the next week we introduced loops. so...give it a go... see if God wants you to do it that way or not. Be prepared for those who will hate it (they usually have a grumble that we don't sing 'the Olde Rugged Cross' anymore too) and be prepared for the track to be at the wrong volume because the PA guy isn't used to it and be prepared to practice, because keeping time to a locked tempo is hard hard hard. I'll leave you with another thing i saw on a Vicky Beaching blog. She asked the following question. "If your church was desperate for a drummer - would you use a non-christian in the band?" The best reply to that was from one of her followers "Why is the church 'desperate' for a drummer?" God bless and I hope and pray it all works out well for you.
bacnol

over 9 years ago (edited)

Thanks for the response Rick. Interesting things to think about. I normally play with a worship team, but sometimes lead for different events (youth groups, faith based treatment programs, etc.) and have been considering using loops with it. I've been wrestling with the, "just because you can doesn't mean you should" thought which is what led to the post. I want it to be about the worship, not about the loops. If it will enhance the worship atmosphere, I'd do it. If it will distract from it, I wouldn't. I guess the only way to figure it out may be to try it out.
mattmccoy

over 9 years ago (edited)

This is something I've done a lot, and haen't gotten a lot of positive feedback from it. It's just something different... not a full band, and not just an acoustic guitar. It gives you more of an Owl City, electronic feel. The trick here is using the right tracks. They need to be killer, and not too busy. If they are too full, it will sound like you are singing to a background track... and that is where cheesy slips in. Choosing the right loops / tracks for this is key. Here's a video of someone at our church leading from acoustic guitar with a pretty full sounding loop track. 

http://youtu.be/2TLXgnBXOJM

or here is a video of an acoustic worship set I did a couple months ago. I played acoustic guitar and a kick drum, but we also played with tracks. Have a look.

http://youtu.be/3TLXvmyXc64