In formal church traditions, where the service is often of the ‘hymn sandwich’ variety, there is obviously no need to consider how to transition between songs. However, with the rise of less formal, contemporary worship (due in large part to the charismatic renewal of the 1960′s and 70′s), there has been a shift towards having a ‘worship time’ in services and meetings – a longer period where there is time to reflect on God in a deeper way and sing several songs together. While musicians may be comfortable playing through song arrangements that have been rehearsed, there can often be uncertainty about how to link songs and maintain a sense of ‘flow’ through the worship time. Having an awkward gap at the end of a song while the musicians fumble through sheet music etc can be a real distraction for the congregation who were engaged but now feel like they’re in limbo waiting for something to happen.
So here are a few tips to help with the flow of a worship time:
- Make sure you are secure on your intros and endings as well as the main ‘body’ of the song (verses & choruses etc). Rehearse those vulnerable moments – especially as that’s often the time when the congregation aren’t singing and will be particularly aware of the musicians. Having a strong start, rather than strumming uncertainly while other musicians drift in will establish a song much more positively. Likewise, know how you’re going to end each song to avoid the distraction/embarrassment of just petering out! Read More