Small Budget? … Free Sheet Music!

Let’s face it, these days the budget for your ministry might be kinda tight, if you even have one, and some of us wind up using our own resources to meet our sheet music needs.

If that’s you, or if you just love to get free stuff, check out  WorshipTogether.com and get this week’s free song plus 9 more … free!

Now, free sheet music?… ya that’s music to my ears!

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“Serious” Listening Skills Needed

What I'm Listening To Now....

What I’m Listening To Now….

Lots of blogs talk about what the blogger is listening too “right now.”  I went through a phase a few years ago where I only listen to Shane and Shane, particularly their “Upstairs” CD which had me totally captured.  Since then it’s been kinda nominal as far as obsessively listening to certain music or musicians.

That’s actually a bit out of my character since I have been known to obsess about things in spurts.  I might be stuck in a “thing” for a while and then get bored and look for the next obsession to brood over.

Then a while back I watched a movie.  Nothing unusual about that since I watch lots of movies. It’s a great film and I would recomend it do anybody who enjoys history, pirates, and the commraderie of men.  The film was Master and Commander and the film score features Yo-Yo Ma playing Bach.

Now I’ve had Yo-Yo’s cello playing Bach Suites in my CD Player before the movie came out but something about the two of them together triggered a note in me and I’ve craved the music obsessively ever since; especially the prelude in G major.

I listened this morning again and found myself in such awe and amazement at the simplicity and complexity of the piece.  Bach was truly inspired.  There’s this dual sided kind of expression in the piece, with large intervals that speak to me of the contrast between what I want and what God wants for me.  A kind of struggle of the heart that I identify with.  Like Paul in Romans, willing but weak to perform good and deny the flesh.   And so, I am brought to tears as I listen and the more I listen the more I hear in the piece.  It’s only 2:22 minutes long and leaves me wanting more each time.  So, I put it on repeat in my iTunes and hide in the piece as the Lord speaks to me in every note ultimately, like the music, finding joy in the end.

Thank YOU LORD for the talent and gifts you bestowed on Johann Sebastian Bach.  I’m so glad that he acknowledged his life and music were a gift from you.

SDG – Soli Deo Gloria
J S Bach appended these initials at the end of each of his Cantatas scores.
  Soli Deo Gloria, to the Glory of God alone,
they signified his deep devotion and desire to serve God through his music. (ref)

SDG

Travel with your Taylor? Think Twice or Get Insured.

Just in case you’re planning to take your Taylor on tour or on vacation be sure you know the airline policies and are confident your guitar is in safe hands or then again, get insurance.

The following video and story are based on a very true, very real experience by Dave Carroll and the Sons of Maxwell. Thanks guys for making it clear!

– In the spring of 2008, Sons of Maxwell were traveling to Nebraska for a one-week tour and my [Dave Carroll] Taylor guitar was witnessed being thrown by United Airlines baggage handlers in Chicago. I discovered later that the $3500 guitar was severely damaged.Read Full Story

Have you traveled with your instruments?
~Did your instrument get special treatment? (mine usually does)
~Were you treated like you were a celeb?
~Can you relate to Dave Carroll?
Leave a comment and tell me how things went.

Worship Leader on a Mission~ Sri Lanka and Back

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Sri Lanka isn’t a big country, about 25,332 sq mi compared to California at about 163,696 sq mi.  The population about 21,128,773 with less than 10% Christian according to Gospel For Asia.  My husband and I were guests of friends, Rob and Heidi Douglass, who live in Colombo, the Capital City.  They were gracious and made us feel very welcome and comfortable in between our jaunts into the jungle and across country .

Rob and Heidi Douglass

Rob, Heidi and little Lilah Douglass

After arriving in Colombo on March 21, and treated to some cool air and sweet fellowship we settled in and prepared for some serious ministry.  My husband, Bob, would visit the Gospel For Asia Bible College in Colombo with Dan Finfrock to teach the Inductive Bible Study Method.  I, on the other hand, was scheduled to travel to, Habarana, a small village in the jungle about 4-1/2 hours into the Sri Lanka interior, north-east of Colombo to teach at a Gospel for Asia satellite bible campus for two days.  My pre-visit impressions were a quaint little campus in a small town but I got a big surprise. (travel tip I: reset your expectations, study the culture, climate and living conditions)

I arrived in Habarana after an early start and a long, bumpy ride.  We discovered that the satellite campus was a short drive, about 1/2 mi. on a dirt road, into the jungle after which we completed the distance on foot for another 1/4 mi. (travel tip II: heels in the jungle…. NOT!)

It’s a jungle out there! Habarana is a favorite elephant safari spot for tourists.  I saw monkeys and heard wild peacocks in between all the other unusual sounds of animals and birds.  It was dense and beautiful and I couldn’t see into it more than a few feet.

We passed a communications building hidden behind a wall and a few simple dwellings along the road as we walked…. and there we were, Habarana GFA Satellite Campus.  A small compound really, which seemed to consist of two or three small brick and block buildings, tin roofs with bare windows and fabric hung in door openings for shade and privacy.

Students sat on grass mats on the rough concrete floor in the chapel which was swept clean with walls white washed all over to catch the light coming in the glass-less windows that allowed flies to stumble in and out lazily.

The main building housed the chapel/classroom and the pastors residence, consisting of what looked like two rooms.  I met the pastors wife, a young woman with a sweet, tender spirit.  She was noticeably concerned as she reported that her husband had been quite ill, unable to eat or drink.  He would be transported to a hospital later the next day. (good reports trickled in later that week)

Satellite buildings in Habarana

Satellite buildings in Habarana

satellite interior Habarana

satellite chapel interior, Habarana

I wish I could have gotten some pics of the students but my phone/camera went dead so I only got the few I’ll share here.  I  apologize for the lousy quality.

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a student with her son and my GFA translator, Tusi

more students, Habarana

Tusi in the doorway with more students, Habarana. notice the international gesture of friendship? yep, they get phone reception even in the jungle.... amazing!

Habarana was my first experience ministering in a jungle setting.  With no electricity, fans or air-conditioning, and no running water…. it was very hot and humid, which at first was a distraction, but once I got busy teaching from His Word things were as they should be.

God is so good and had been preparing me and the students long before He sent me there to share what I have learned about worshipping Him.  Around mid day we broke for a lunch of white rice, a lentil paste with a bit of egg and other simple foods.  Later in the afternoon, our hosts were gracious and served very hot, very sweet, cream tea which would have been more welcome had it been cooler weather but it was a nice treat even in the heat if the day.

These students were so genuine and hungry to hear and learn.  They recieved the Word with gladness and we shared the common bond of fellowship in spite of language and culture barriers.

two wonderful little "guitar students" I spent some time bonding with

two wonderful little "guitar students" we learned chords and spent some time bonding... precious!

An unusual thing happened on this trip.  At least it was unusual for me.  On the long drive down I had time to ponder, pray and get to know my translator, Tusi.  During one of our quiet stretches, she had fallen asleep.  I distinctly heard the Lord speak to my heart that I would be praying for someone demon possessed.  I promptly thanked the Lord for the fore-warning seeing as how I’d never been in that situation before and began to pray for His Spirit to empower me and Tusi and go before us.

I had no idea what would occur but what could I do?  Just go with it and trust my Jesus.  🙂    At the end of the first day of teaching I asked the students if any of them wanted prayer.  Tusi and I prayed for several, maybe 20, students.  It was a sweet time and I discovered that their prayer requests were much the same as those I hear in the states; “please pray for my sick mother,” Please pray for my unsaved family,” one needed healing, another needed a place to stay.  All the usual requests except for a common request to pray for restoration of families as Buddhist and Hindu parents will disown their children for becoming Christians.

Then a young man, maybe in his late teens, was brought to us by some friends or family members, I wasn’t sure which.  I found out that he was not a student at the bible college.

It was explained that “he was possessed with a demon.”  I declared to Tusi that this had been what the Spirit had foretold me.   We set our hearts to pray and all the students began praying out loud in their own language.

I wont go into detail except to note that he displayed biblical demonic possession behavior as we prayed for him.  After about 10 minutes he began to call out to the Lord and fell quiet and was delivered.  The next day he was sitting with the students studying the Word and smiling from ear to ear.  Later that day I saw him running with the other boys and so full of life.  It was glorious!

We returned to the Douglass home in Colombo and I was reunited with my husband and Dan who shared their own adventures, enjoyed a cool night in air-conditioned luxury with a new assignment ahead.

That mostly describes my first 3 days in Sri Lanka….. The balance of the trip included teaching at another GFA campus.  I praise my Lord for His mercy and grace to fulfill what He had given me to do and for glorifying Himself in my life.

Peace in Jesus Christ!

Cosima

PS  Thanks to all those who were praying for this trip.  Your prayers were felt and much appreciated.

Sight Reading Music

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Some of us worship musicians are timid about reading music.  It’s a bit daunting if we aren’t used to it but Monica on InTune at the MusicNotes blog gives some great pointers to help us learn to sight read better.  Her article suggests tips for piano, keyboard players and vocalist, but the techniques work great for guitar players too.  

Remember, sight reading is just another part of being a musician.  Tackle it with confidence and watch your skills improve.

 

Get Christian Sheet Music at MusicNotes.com

Free Singing Lessons

One of the things I hear all the time is, “I can’t sing” or ” I want to be a better singer.”  

Most worship leaders and worship vocalists have trouble with feelings of inadequacy when it comes to their voices.  Let’s face it, most of us didn’t intend to become singers it just kind of happened,… one day there we were at a bible study or small group meeting and we were coaxed into leading a few songs.  Our voices just had to come along for the ride and after wards we were wondering if our voices were up to the task.

Today Musicademy shares several free singing lessons from their Seminar CDs that cover breathing, vocal health and harmony.  Be sure and have a look, these are classic techniques that will help even the most timid singer become more confident and strong.

 

For more on singing visit SingingSuccess.com

 

Worship Leader on a Mission

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I was talking with some folks tonite after service about being in the mission field.  Our discussion included some stories about spiritual warfare and oppression.  The enemy works you overtime when you are on his territory.

I’ve done a few mission trips in my years of ministry.  My first over-seas was China.  Wow, what an experience.  Before that I’d gone to Mexico and some local stuff.  Since then, Japan on several occasions and in between those my husband, two daughters and I did a year there.  I loved the people, the culture and the intensity of the mission field.  We really have it easy here in the US.  Yes, our enemy seeks to devour us but, honestly, it’s nothing like what I experienced in Japan.

On March 21 my husband and I will be traveling to Sri Lanka, returning to the US on April 3.  Rob Douglass and his family who are serving at Calvary Chapel Colombo have invited us to come and minister.  I’m so honored to be able to teach on worship at the Calvary Chapel Bible College there as well as minister to the women on Serving as Women.  My husband will teach Inductive Bible Study with Dan Finfrock of Intensive Care Ministries.

It would be a great blessing to me if I could have a few of you praying for this trip.  The national Christians are hungry for the Word and I feel a deep responsibility to be well prepared and represent Christ as best as possible, but to the enemy, “This means war!”

Please, leave me a comment to let me know you will partner with me for this trip.  I’ll be posting updates and more info periodically.

Thank you and God bless!

 

sdg

Bob Bennett~ new songs in the future

Bob Bennett

Recently I received an email from Bob Bennett.  Bob’s been a fixture in the worship and christian music circle since I can remember.  His ability to put words down and give you “pictures” in your mind is uncanny.  With songs like Come and See,  Still Rolls the Stone and Mountain Cathedrals.  

So, like I said, I received an email from Bob.  He wrote these words,

“the first few sprinkles of creative rain have fallen in my life … perhaps the long song drought is over and I can begin walking out of this desert.  I’m cautiously optimistic about that.”

I’ve been looking forward to hearing what he’s been up to and was glad to find that he’d posted a demo of a new song he’s been working on.  He reminded me that it was only a demo, “not a final ‘anything’ about except, maybe, the structure of the song itself (music and lyrics).” 

Bob’s granted permission to post a link to the demo but he’ll be taking it down after the 15th of January so be sure to listen before it’s gone.  

I decided to include this video of Bob from a few years back…..  Enjoy!

Singing Lessons OnLine

If your interested in improving your vocal technique and overcoming some vocal road-blocks check out Singing Success Online’s video lessons.

Here’s a video clip of an actual online video lesson.

“What is Singing Success Online?”

“Singing Success Online is a subscription based online video delivery platform designed to provide downloadable and streaming videos of Brett Manning (and other associates) teaching a wide variety of singers. In other words, film of Brett teaching a voice lesson every week gets uploaded to be available to all subscribers. The philosophy behind this service is based on an age old concept of vicarious learning or learning by observation.”

Check out the most cutting-edge vocal training program on the internet! SingingSuccessOnline.com and get answers to questions like:

    Why would I want to watch other people’s voice lessons?
    What concepts will I learn?
    How many lessons are posted a month?
    What type of internet connection will I need?
    What does Singing Success Online cost?

Here are some of the concepts you will learn:

  • How to safely ‘belt’ out those high notes using a stronger mix.
  • Achieve the vocal stamina and consistency of the veteran professional.
  • Learn the secrets of making the vocal “real” in a live performance. Every time.
  • How to use your air efficiently to provide support for the techniques you learned in the Singing Success program.
  • How to know if you are truly in your mix. There are many types of mix and you will hear them all on this site.
  • Truly understand the similarities and differences between your head voice and falsetto.
  • How to master the whistle register and actually use it practically in your singing.
  • Learn to balance the pressure and edge you need to sing those high notes in a real song.
  • Learn how to better apply the techniques you learned in your Singing Success Program.
  • Learn how to have TRUE (seemless) connection from chest to head.
  • Of course this list nowhere near exhaustive but I tried to hit the high points. I believe these things are very difficult to learn by any other means.

    Also, for Brett Manning’s Singing Success DVD/CD Course be sure to visit SingingSuccess.com.

    Double Strum made easy…

    Ya, Shane Bernard makes the double strum look so easy in the video he leans over and chats with Shane Elliot like double strumming is in his bones … enjoy.

    By the way, I’m still looking for someone who can really teach this strum simply and get it across to us less fortunate guitar players.

    Here’s the shanes definition of the double strum from one of my earlier posts.
    ”double strumming” is a simple (not easy) technique of strumming twice as fast as the normal strum pattern of the song. Usually used in a short burst kinda like a fill on the drum set. For example if you were strumming at eighth notes 1 & 2 & 3 & but for the forth beat you took 4 e & a in your strumming, then that would be a double strum.

     

    Strumming Sensations is a collection of different strumming styles for you to play along to.  It will improve your strumming and rhythm as well as provide you with a stack of new combination and riff ideas when you next jam with your friends or on stage.  With a combination of rock, blues and funk arranged from beginner to advanced, you’ll no longer struggle with strumming and be able to pick up the pattern of almost any song in no time.  Within seconds of signing up users receive their log in details to get started right away.

     


    Musicnotes.com

    New Song Cafe

    NewSong If you’re looking for new songs or need to know how to play a particular song, here’s a great resource.  Stop by WorshipTogether.com and visit New Song Cafe.  Here you’ll find videos where worship leaders share stories about how their songs were written and then lead you through the structure and chords of the song.   Log in to create an account and enjoy watching and learning.    Here Chris Tomlin demonstrates his song, Glory in the Highest on the New Song Cafe. 

    Worship Leaders- Starting ’em young!

     Mark Roach, a worship leader whose gifts are evident posted this video of his four year old son joining the worship team for their Christmas Service.  A great young “drummer boy” whose got a groove goin’ on.  Enjoy!

      

    Worshipsource.com

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    Hey everybody, Mark Roach introduced me to this new website. Worshipsource.com is a FREE online networking community for worship leaders, worship songwriters, musicians and worshippers. This site allows each member to create a personal profile in order to find and share new music, discover new resources and connect with peers. It is a SAFE forum to help equip each other to continue the work of serving today’s worshipping Church.

    WorshipSource.com functions as an online tool where members can upload their original songs to be reviewed by other members of the community and to discover new songs being birthed out of local churches or ministry groups.

    They’ve also created the site to continually provide you with new music from a wide range of record labels, artists, writers and other church ministry professionals.

    The site is still in it’s infancy so get in on the ground floor!

    The Worship Community Forums

    As worship leaders and musicians it’s important to continually improve our Biblical perspective and our leadership and musical skills. Here’s a great site where you can discuss all things worship. Anything and everything from praise and worship forums, worship discussion, worshiptalk, church music forum, chuch audio, church lighting, worship leading, effects talk, and more.

    Join TheWorshipCommunity.Com and Discuss Everything Worship!

    www.theworshipcommunity.com