Sunday, April 27, 2008

U-Pick the Music Weekend

You pick the music!

That's right. We're trying something different in June 2008. The worship arts family at TBC select the music for an upcoming worship service. They are casting their vote online. Top songs will be featured at a service of worship on Sunday, June 1, 2008 at Topeka Bible Church. If it goes OK, I'll open it up to the entire church in the future for one weekend.

For those of you who think you can "slip one in" if you aren't a part of the worship arts family, I'll know if your name matches my database or not. Sorry, you'll have to wait until this pilot run is over - or join the worship family.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Kerry Livgren in the Movie "The Imposter"

Award winning musician/composer Kerry Livgren will make his feature film acting debut in director/screenwriter Daniel Millican’s (A Promise Kept, Striking Range) upcoming drama, The Imposter. Livgren has been cast in a supporting role in the motion picture opposite Grammy winner Kevin Max (dcTalk), who will star in the film’s lead role of ‘Johnny C’.

The trailer is now available. See how God is using Kerry, rock legend, now moviestar, and a common man who teaches a Bible class each week at church.

According to the film’s co-producer Troy Baker, “So often we have idolized Christian Artists almost to the point of deifying them. Their humanity is lost in the limelight we so easily thrust them into. This film not only deals with the lifestyle and subsequent breakdown of ‘Johnny’, it also pulls back the curtain on the Christian Music Industry. At its very core, though, The Imposter is a story of redemption and self-discovery, and what it truly means to believe.”

In his role, Mr. Livgren’s ‘Proff’ mentors the fallen Christian rock star in an attempt to help ‘Johnny C’ salvage and rebuild a life that was once perceived by others as picture perfect. After reading Millican’s moving script, Livgren decided that the time had come to take the plunge into acting. “I am a musician and composer. I never envisioned playing a role in a motion picture, yet I am very pleased to be a part of The Imposter, with its message of hope and salvation.”

How to Virtually Attend Any Conference Free

Wondering how you'll attend a conference with a busy schedule? Don't want to pay the bucks to make it there? Didn't know about it until after it happened? Then I have a great solution for you.

You can attend almost any conference today for FREE. That's right. And you can fit it into your schedule. How? Simply find the blogs of those who are attending a conference. I'm virtually attending a conference called the Exponential Conference: The DNA of Reproducing Churches by reading other blogs. Sometimes attenders will takes notes from a session and upload them right after the session or that evening.

Here are some examples you can click on and go right to their blog that has content from this great conference.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Tony Blair Tries to Find a Church to Worship At

Imagine trying to find a church that has to decide if it can handle YOU worshipping there. What if the president wanted to worship at your church? What about Jesus? Read the full article.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Worship Leader Tip: Use The Best Tools To Help You

I need a little help from my friends to get the job done. How do I stay on top of stuff and remain creative? Here are some frequent tools I use to help me do that.

Personal Assistant and GTD (Get Things Done) Helps

Online Tools

Spiritual Growth Tools

Music Gear

Computer Stuff

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Worship Leader Tip: Convert Rehearsal Tracks to the Correct Key

I have to admit, it's a pet peeve of mine when someone hands me a recording and says - we're going to do this music, but it'll be in a different key. Grrrr. How am I supposed to get the correct harmonies, melody, or riffs if it's not even close?!

Listen folks - get your recordings in the right key. It's worth the effort for your instrumentalists and vocalists.

There's great free software called Audacity that my good friend Todd Bochenko (Clair Brothers Audio) pointed me to several years ago. It works for PC and Mac and allows you to edit audio easily. You can change the pitch without changing the speed of playback. You can change speed of playback without pitch. You can even strip off the vocals and make a kareoke track on some recordings. It's a great tool.

Sure it might sound a little chipmunky or marshmellowish - but it's the right key for goodness sakes. And it won't cost a penny - unlike Pro Tools, Sonar Cakewalk, or the like.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Simple Church

In light of the book Simple Church we are reading as a staff, this video expresses nicely how sometimes accomplishing God's mission using bigger and better and more complex methods may not be the best - when there's a more simple (maybe not as obvious) solution how to accomplish the same mission.

Your kids might enjoy this too. Thanks to Kem Meyer for pointing me to this video.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Giving Up My Private Life

Sometimes, I really cherish privacy. My wife is a little nervous about my Twittering. I don't blame her.

On the first nice day here in Topeka, KS this year - I walked over to talk with a neighbor who I don't know very well. In our first casual conversation he says, "Hey, I saw you on YouTube." Yikes!

My neighbor had seen the Christmas light show video from 4 months ago. When we seek to influence the world around us - we will eventually have to lead public lives. There's no way Jesus could have lived a private life if He was going to influence the world around Him.

PS - If my neighbor is reading this, talk to you when the weather gets nicer.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Amazing! Stinks to Be the Last One On

Worship Leading Tip: Last Lyric

Try changing the text/font to a yellow color on the final lyric projection. Why?

1. Helps the congregation know it's the end of the song.
2. Helps your musicians know to prepare for a transition to the next song.
3. Helps your musicians know it's the final time, if they are lost.
4. Helps you as the worship leader prepare for a transition.

Worship Leader Tip: Song Planning Tip

Create a playlist in iTunes for upcoming worship weekends, label them. During the year, put your iTunes on shuffle and throw songs into the corresponding playlist.

Easter worship ideas
Christmas worship ideas
Patriotic worship ideas
Acoustic worship ideas
Country music worship ideas

Then when it comes time to select songs, you have a playlist ready to roll. Sounds so simple. Why didn't I think of this 10 years ago?

Nice Feature with Apple Mail: Redirect

Just discovered a nice feature with Apple mail. Maybe it's been there all along. But redirecting email is handy when it really was intended for someone else or if you already sent an email but forgot to send it to another individual. Shift-Command-E does the trick.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Piano Fall Goof: Audio Included

OK, OK, fine. Quit asking me for a recording of the Palm Sunday piano fall during prayer I referenced earlier. Here it is. You can either stream it or download it. Goof occurs 30 seconds into the clip.