Hmmm…VERY intersting…

January 30, 2008

A few things I’ve got my eyes on right now:

and of course I’m still waiting for…

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Yesterday was one of those ‘highlights’ for me – a day where, from morning till sundown, I felt as though my every step was perfect.

In the morning I went to church and led the Rush Hour (Jr. High Youth Group) band, including a brand new guitarist who had never played with us before (apart from a rehearsal), and it was GREAT. Not only was the worship time intimate – the youth in the room seemed engaged, and during the quiet moments I could hear voices from every corner of the room, but the band sounded great, especially the new guitarist. I love leading worship, but even more-so, I love seeing young musicians ‘get it’, both spiritually and musically. It just lights me up to see a kid step up and DO IT, and do it well, even! It was a good morning.

After church, I spent the afternoon in the studio with my wife singing background vocals for my brother-n-law’s forthcoming c.d. (for whom my wife is the booking agent, so if you’d like him to play somewhere LET ME KNOW). He’s working under the name McKendree Augustas, and the new tunes are sweet. I’m excited to hear the final product, which should be mixed later this week.

Finally, in the evening, I got to open for David Herndon at his c.d. release party. Given the nature of the songs he was playing that night, I decided to be ‘Set on Edge‘ for the evening, instead of ‘Saint Lewis‘. I usually rely upon a group of excellent musicians, but instead focused on spicing up my acoustic parts a bit and did it solo. I not only felt very good about the performance (there was a great audience there – I’d guess 300+ showed), got many compliments, and sold a few cds, but also got in a number of great conversations, and for me those conversations/relationships is what good music really comes down to: a conversation between me, the listener, and God.

Yesterday was one more day that makes me consider doing some really crazy things to enable every day to be like that. The thought of one day leading others in worship, training musicians and worship leaders and seeing them step into their own, writing songs that move people’s hearts and the heart of God, playing live, and recording – well, that just sounds like Heaven on Earth to me and leaves my head spinning.

Yesterday was a good day. 😉

I’ve always enjoyed conferences. I come away from them rested (even apart from getting no sleep, oft-times!), encouraged, challenged, and just plain excited, with a fresh of vision of what I can do and how things can be. Wouldn’t it be nice to take your whole team to a conference? Unfortunately, that’s just plain not feasible, given the complexities of people’s schedules, and financial issues. So a few years back I began putting on my own ‘mini-conferences’ for my youth group musicians, and those interested in one day being on the team, which I call ‘Youth Worship Workshops’. They’ve done well for us, not only in giving the youth a new vision for our team and a new passion for worshiping God, but also as essentially ‘try-outs’ to discover and invest in future talent which will slowly be integrated into, and one day replace, the current team. If you’re a worship leader an interested in doing one at your church, here’s the basics of what we do: Read the rest of this entry »

I’m a strong supporter of independent musicians and songwriters, and though these old friends of mine aren’t quite as ‘independent’ as they were when we first met, I’ve really been listening to them a lot recently and wanted to spread the joy a bit. Read the rest of this entry »

This past Sunday was such an encouragement to me. After a hard week at both jobs, I just didn’t know how Sunday morning would go. I felt beat down, tired, and discouraged on all fronts, so what’s the next obvious thing to do?: WORSHIP GOD! How true that is! One thing that did strike me as a real blessing was how God led me in choosing the songs before I even knew what David was preaching on. It didn’t dawn on me until I sat through David’s sermon on Sunday morning how perfect the songs were – every one tied into and emphasized the overall message that morning. Such a blessing! Thank you, Holy Spirit! Read the rest of this entry »

I take great joy in tracking down new worship songs, as it provides for me new opportunities – fresh words – to worship God with privately, and sometimes new tunes to guide our youth upon a path towards seeing God more fully. Here are a few of my more exciting discoveries over the past few months: Read the rest of this entry »

Kudo’s to my friend Matt Harmon for the idea of publishing my New Year’s resolutions in ‘Jonathan Edwards style’…

Matt wrote, “Jonathan Edwards wrote a list of 70 resolutions between 1722-23 (at the ripe age of 19-20!) that he wanted to shape his life.” Edwards’ list can be seen HERE.

Personally, my resolutions will be a bit more practical and direct than were his, but some of his were so good that I may just reword a few of them for my own use. Read the rest of this entry »

Hold on for your life…here’s some blog love so vast that few can withstand its…well…okay, here are a bunch of blog posts from last year that I never reposted but should have.  So, without detailed descriptions, or much fluff, here they are.  Really, there is some great content here.  Be blessed!

What do you do when you are no longer the “focus” of your church’s programming? from Rich Kirkpatrick

Getting more Volunteers from Behind the Leaf

Ruined for Anything Else from Challies.com

 All-Time Favorite Story from Vince Antonuccio

Worship: it’s really all about us? from Sign of Jonah

Real Suffering & Songwriting from Milestone Worship

and lastly, a bit of humor from the Internet Monk – Proverbs for Angry Old (and Young) Men.

So there, my folder has been cleared.  Enjoy!

Music Theory…

January 2, 2008

Chris from Canada was nice to draw our attention to Ryan Egan’s blog, which has contains many helpful music theory tips. I’ve found these helpful, so maybe you will too. Click any of the following for the links:

  1. Basic Triads
  2. Inversions
  3. Weird Chord Suffixes
  4. Relative Minor Chord

One Book…

January 2, 2008

Even though I wasn’t tagged by Klampert, I had to join in…
01. One book that changed your life
Desiring God – John Piper
You can see what I think of Piper through an older post at my other blog.
02. One book that you’ve read more than once
Living the Cross-Centered Life – C.J. Mahaney
I read this 5 times through the first month I owned it. Wow.
03. One book you’d want on a desert island
The Bible – English Standard Version
04. One book that made you laugh
The Complete Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams
I read it over and over, and it never ceases to crack me up
05. One book that made you cry
End of the Spear – Steve Saint
The movie did it absolutely no justice.
06. One book that you wish had been written
Thoughts on Bonfires: or 4 days in…
and it will be, but probably not until AFTER I retire.
07. One book that you wish had never been written
Holy Blood, Holy Grail – Michael Baigent
What rubbish. What’s worse, to the un-educated, it’s fairly convincing sounding rubbish.
08. One book you’re currently reading
unChristian – David Kinnaman
Nothing shocking here, but a healthy reminder to those WITHIN the church of how we are perceived when we become, well, ‘churchy’…

09. One book you’ve been meaning to read
God Songs – Paul Baloche
Starting it this week – VERY EXCITED!

10. Now tag five people: Matt @ Biblical Theology; Micah @ A Circle in the Fire; Chris Moncus; David @ Say What?; & Heather @ Treasures Out of the Darkness.