Tag Archives: Music

Why We Like Music

Why We Like Music

God touches us through music.
Music is more than entertainment.
Music is more than artistic expression.
Music is prayer.
is spiritual connection.
is worship.
is compelling.
is convicting.
is biblical.
is emotional.
is popular.
is enduring.
is reflective.
is anthemic.
is inventive.
Music was created by God.
Music is sonorous.
is harmonious.
is pleasing to the ear.
is uplifting.
Music grabs our attention.
Music is rhythmic poetry.
Music makes us want to dance.
Music inspires.
Music is powerful.
is wonderful.
is delightful.
is heavenly.
is magnificent.
is unforgettable.
is unstoppable.
is gripping.
is innovation.
is prolific.
is memorable.
is influential.
is timeless.
is essential.
is a priority.
Music soothes the soul.
Music stimulates.
Music motivates.
Music inspires us to create.
Music is heart and soul.
Music brings tears to my eyes.
Music invites participation.
Music gives people a chance to express what words cannot.
Music is a powerful unified prayer.
Music helps us enjoy our time together as we worship God.

Music does not usher people into God’s presence.
Music can be an idol.
Music does not draw people to God.
Music does not unite us.
Music does not define us.

I do love music.
I play music.
I play stringed instruments.
Music is a part of me.
My spirit comes out through my music.
But, I’ve saved the best notes, chords, rhythms and riffs for God!

Practice Time

Practice Time

How much time does your musical team get together to practice? Our band currently has four members (two guitars, one keyboard, and one who plays light percussion and adds harmony background vocals), we all like to sing, and we lead the music on a monthly basis (one Sunday per month). In preparation for this monthly service, we try to get together about three times a month (taking one week off) for about one hour each week. This equates to about three hours of group practice for one hour of leading musical worship. To me this seems just about right because you can hear the songs really coming together by the end of the second or the third practice depending on the complexity.

Our band is made up of all seasoned musicians with a combined 100+ years of musical experience at our respective instruments so one might think that we don’t need much practice. But the thing is, each month we have new songs to learn so it’s important to get together to divide up who will be singing which parts, who will be driving the arrangement, what key signatures to use, how we will introduce the song, who will take solos and where (if at all), and most importantly to get the feel of the overall groove of the music.

When a band practices together to hone their craft, the result is a coherent musical offering that invites congregational participation and helps in the overall flow of the worship service. Group practice allows time for the bass guitarist and drummer to work together to build the groove of the song and for the guitars and keyboards to provide the body and melody of the music.

In addition to this week night practice time, we each practice solo at home and we listen to our monthly songs performed by the original recording artists on our individual MP3 players and email youtube versions of each song to one another. Finally, we meet together about a half hour before the worship service to check our balances and to run through that difficult part once more.

In the end, we know each other very well. We can interpret looks from one another during worship. We know each others signals when something isn’t quite right; maybe the tempo needs to be adjusted based on the congregation’s singing, or maybe one of us is singing off-pitch (usually me). We are not only a band – we are friends who support one another and pray for each other.

The bottom line is that bands need to spend time together because the worship life of the church improves when this happens.

This is My Story

This is My Story

“This is my story, this is my song” – Fannie Crosby

“We recite the story;
We proclaim the story;
We sing the story;
We are called to live out the story.”
– Robert Webber

This is one of my stories. It is a true story. It is not easy to put in writing.

I Dig Hymns

I wasn’t always into church music, especially Contemporary Christian music. If anything, in the context of worship, I dug hymns. I was into God and praising and glorifying Him but music was just a tool to do this. It was part of my Sunday worship routine. I sang hymns in church and I listened to popular secular music when I was home. I separated the two musical worlds and I was happy.

My world has since changed.

Wake Up!

I started playing guitar somewhere around age 14. But once a job, a house, a marriage and a child came, the guitar playing stopped. At some point in my mid to late forties, God shook me from my musical slumber by using a Synodical instrument known as “Parish Assistance”. After all, He gave me a gift that I was not using to His glory.

Some What?

In retrospect, our congregation was floundering, at least in terms of growth and that bugged us. I wouldn’t have said it this way back then, but that’s what was happening and that’s what caused us to reach out for assistance. Among other things, one recommendation (from Parish Assistance) was to try some contemporary music. Some what? Good Heavens!

The word went out looking for anyone who knew anything about Christian Contemporary music. I did not respond because I knew absolutely nothing. Zilch. Zed. The Bagel. Hymns –yes, contemporary Christian music – no. But God can work in mysterious ways. He used someone else in our congregation, who knew that I was a closet guitarist. I had long since lost my fingertip calluses but as most musicians can attest, I did not forget how to play.

Sign, Signs, Everywhere a Sign

“Faith means trusting in advance what will make sense only in reverse” – Philip Yancy

Looking, back, I can now see God’s handiwork throughout my church life. Too bad I didn’t realize it when it was happening right before my very eyes. Doesn’t this always seem to be the case?

The First Sign – Who are these Musicians?

So, two guitarists took on the task of accompanying a pilot contemporary worship service. And in this first service I received what I can only refer to as a “sign”. As I was playing, I heard other instruments carrying the song along. Piano, drums and bass. It was so real to me; a sign only for me; a confidence booster; a reminder of His presence, a gift and a blessing. My over active imagination no doubt, but perhaps manipulated by the Creator.

The Second Sign – Welcome Ruth!

At some point, guitarist number two left the congregation and I was alone to lead worship with an acoustic guitar. It was scary and I didn’t do a very good job. There were a lot of prayers for an accomplished keyboard player gifted in contemporary music. Very quickly thereafter Ruth enters. A music teacher, a vocal coach, and a gifted keyboard player who came to us from the “Sure Foundation” Mission church in New York City. She had been transferred to CT to work as a music teacher in Granby Middle school. Guess where I live. Granby, CT; a sleepy farm town with more horses, cows, llamas, goats and chickens than people, and, 40 minutes from our church. No one relocates to CT to work in Granby! But God pieced this odd coincidence together. The first thing Ruth told me was that she was not an organist and that she enjoys playing contemporary music. Hello sign number two and welcome to Messiah Ruth.

What if Church Rocked?

I still remember exactly the first time that I played a song with Ruth. We were singing “Forever” by Chris Tomlin. I stand while I play guitar and I am located right next to her as she is seated at the keyboards. I was amazed when I looked down at her and I vividly remember two things that I had never seen in my 5 decades of attending church. Namely, she was singing into her mic with vigor as she was playing and the entire keyboard was moving around as she hammered on the keys. She sang and played with such passion, focus and intensity. I wasn’t brought up this way. Could this really be church?

After the service, a member approached and said “I really enjoyed that song Forever. Where did the lyrics come from?” My answer – “Psalm 136.”

The Third Sign – Songbooks!

We desperately needed songbooks but had no budget. Out of nowhere comes a memorial donation. A member’s relative passes, happens to have been a guitarist, and requested that her memorials be used towards church music. But we are still short, and two retired ladies in the congregation approach me and say “We love hymns and we always will, we’ve been singing the same hymns for over 60 years, but we see a passion in you and we want to pay whatever your shortfall is.” What an awesome display of Christian love. So, song books arrive. The third sign. More prayers answered.

The Forth Sign – Off to Appleton We Go!

I get real close to our Pastor. It’s that Pastor/Worship Leader relationship that I posted about a few weeks ago. He in fact encouraged me to start this BLOG. But shortly thereafter He takes a Call to serve a congregation in Appleton, WI. Incredibly, I get a business trip to be in Appleton WI on the very Sunday of his Installation service so that I could be at a manufacturer in the area for a Monday morning meeting. My first and only trip to WI, let alone to Appleton. Coincidence? Perhaps not. It could be the Master Weaver. Again.


There were a few stumbling blocks along the way but God provided and we have been growing ever since. From about 50 attendees per Sunday when this all started to a bustling 100+ right now. We have had to expand our worship sanctuary, have had to order additional contemporary songbooks on two different occasions, and have had to order additional sanctuary seating to accommodate the growth. I know that this growth is not due to the start-up of the monthly blended service. It’s in fact probably more accurate to say that we have grown in spite of my fumbling efforts. Make no mistake, the primary instrument that God used in our church for growth, has been our Pastor working through Word and Sacrament and staying faithful to that Word. It is the Gospel and the work of the Holy Spirit. It is not me, never was, and never will be. I am just grateful to be a part of his ministry team.

It’s Not Me!

Everything that has happened of significance to shape our worship of Him has been His doing. He just used me and people around me to accomplish His means.

He meant for us to reach out to Parish Assistance.
He meant for Parish Assistance to shake us up.
He meant for me to be nominated and to start strumming again.
He meant for me to hear other instrumentalists when they obviously weren’t there.
He meant to bring a keyboard player into our midst.

These signs may all seem minor or just coincidence to you.
They do not to me.
I lived through them.
I prayed through them.
I’ve sensed God’s prodding and blessings through them.
I continue to experience it.
I BLOG about it.
This is my testimonial.
This was my start.
This is my story.
This I believe.

There are no Accidents

Every single thing in history is interlaced in a million infinite number of ways. I do not have the wherewithal or the wisdom to make these decisions or to alter the course of history as God has done throughout my life. God overrules everything. He alone is sovereign. Nothing happens by accident and very seldom do we get the tiniest glimpse of how He is working in our lives for the good of those who love Him.

I am blessed.
I have seen.
I have felt His power.
I have seen Him move.
God is changing my life.
His love is not abstract to me.
It is real.
It is influential.
It is operative in my life.
God chose me.
I did not choose Him.
God persists to love me despite my pushing Him away.


I am thankful for my Savior
Who continues to bless me though I do not deserve it
for my church which I do not deserve
for my Pastor who I do not deserve
for my family who I do not deserve
for my friends who I do not deserve
and to my Synod who I do not deserve.

To Him alone be the glory. Amen.

22 Essential Traits of a Great Worship Musician

22 Essential Traits of a Great Worship Musician

These are in no particular order but are all important when auditioning a new potential band mate:

1. Is a member of the church and attends regularly
2. Takes direction well
3. Humble
4. Easy to work with
5. Skilled at one or more of the following:
a. Playing an instrument
b. Lyric writing
c. Singing
6. A worshipful heart
7. A thankful heart
8. Prays regularly
9. Positive outlook
10. Caring and sympathetic
11. Loves the Lord, the team, the Pastor and the congregation
12. Views the music as much more than a gig
13. Has integrity
14. Loyal
15. Devoted
16. Authentic; is the same person off-line vs on-line
17. Dependable
18. Consistent
19. Reads the bible regularly
20. Serves with gladness
21. Listens to Contemporary Christian Music in their free time
22. Embraces change and all things new

New songs, new day, new start, new hope, new mercy, new possibilities, new ideas, new ways, new people, new heaven, new earth, new covenant, new self, new heart, new command, new creation … new, new, new! Everything is new!

How to Modernize a Hymn – Part two of a two part series

How to Modernize a Hymn – Part two of a two part series

“Praise God from Whom All Blessings Flow” by Michael Schroeder

Let’s consider the doxology put to music, “Praise God from Whom All Blessings Flow” which is hymn number 334 in “Christian Worship” (the Lutheran Hymnal).

By looking at the hymn, it’s apparent that it is written in the key of G because it has one sharp.  This already is a guitar friendly key so we are off to a good start.

Next, from the chord tables presented in yesterday’s post, we see that the typical chords in the key of G are going to be G, Am, Bm, C, D, and Em.  Very important!

Next, by looking at the notes, we identify the chords and the best places for the chord changes.  We can see from the lead sheet below that the artist, Michael Schroeder, is using a chord progression consisting of G, D, C and Em which are all in line with our expectations cited above.  We’ll discuss the slash chords and extensions later.

First, let’s look at the intro.  This is the musical hook for the new arrangement.  It’s catchy, it’s a driving beat, it sets the mood for the song, it’s memorable, it’s identifiable, in short, it’s great.  The key to the hook is the chord change from the G(no3) to the Gmaj7(no3) and the transition to the C2(no 3) and the Gmaj7(no 3) / C bass.  These are not very well known chord voicings but once you know them, they sound incredible together.  This is “jazzing up the piece” as identified in step five in yesterday’s post.

Next, let’s look at the lyrics and the structure of the song.  The first and last verse are the same as the hymn verse.  This is great because who wants to mess around with the doxology?  But Schroeder adds two new verses that are biblical and support the overall themes of praise and thanks in the hymn.  He also does a fine job of bringing out our praises to all persons of the Holy Trinity.

He has also added a chorus that does all the things mentioned in yesterday’s post.  Namely, it is lyrically a response to the verse, it is sung higher and with more energy and it is memorable.  It also uses all the major chords (tonic chords) in the key of G – G, C and D.

The structure of the song is Intro, Verse 1, Intro, Verse 2, Chorus, Verse 3, Chorus, Verse 4, Outro.  You will also note that the “hook” established in the intro is used as a musical turnaround throughout the song.  The arrangement is nicely and thoughtfully put together.

Finally, Michael Schroeder has done a stellar job of jazzing up the chords.  He’s dropped the third from the G chord converting it to a power chord (essentially a G5 chord), he’s added slash chords to highlight a bass run to go along with the chord changes in the verse, and he’s using a Dsus and a few “2” chords, like the C2 for a real contemporary sound and feel.

All in all, a very fine job.  This is what modernizing a hymn should sound like.

You can listen to a 1.5 minute sound clip of this piece here (song #10):


You can also purchase the CD from the Itunes site, or if you buy it from Michael Schroeder’s website ( www.michaelschroeder.com ), it will also include a free bonus CD with backing tracks, chord charts, lyrics, scripture references, commentaries and power points for each of the songs included on the disc. 

Here’s my recommendations: 

If you are a Pastor who has never tried anything like this before, but you are curious, I would propose to proceed carefully as follows: 

  1. Buy the CD from www.michaelschroeder.com because the dual disc format and the extra resources will prove to be priceless to you.
  2. Use the bonus disc with the backing track for “Praise God from Whom All Blessings Flow” and try it first with your youth or teen group if you have one.  If not, try it with your choir first.  My guess is that your people are going to love it.
  3. Have your choir or the youth group introduce it to the congregation by singing it on any given Sunday.
  4. Get a copy of the lead sheet from this website to your church musicians (pianist and a guitarist are a must for this piece).  Have them practice it until they know it well.
  5. Sing it as a congregation using either the above two-piece band or you can still use the backing track if you don’t have the musicians.
  6. You might want to have a soloist or the choir sing the choruses because the E note is quite high for the average singer.
  7. God be with you.  Email if you have any questions.

For a limited time, you can get the lead sheet by clicking on the following text:

Praise God – MSchroeder


How to Modernize a Hymn – Part one of a two part series

How to Modernize a Hymn – Part one of a two part series

I don’t think there are many Christians, even those who use nothing but Contemporary music, that doubt or question the depth and the beauty of the lyrics contained in our wealth of hymns. But sometimes, they are difficult to comprehend or are just too musically foreign to those that we are Called to reach.

There is a process to modernize these hymns and to put chords to them but it’s not easy to do and there are a lot of subtleties that only come with experience and knowledge. In this two-part series, I will try to address one basic approach to do this.

In this first installment, we will consider a step-by-step approach written for a beginner’s level and the second installment will show an example where these types of techniques have been used successfully.

So let’s start…

Step One – Put Chords to it

Here is the process you will need to add your own chords:

  1. Identify the key signature by looking at the number of sharps and flats.

No sharps or flats – key of C or Am
1 Sharp – key of G or Em
2 Sharps – key of D or Bm
3 Sharps – key of A or F#m
4 Sharps – key of E or C#m
5 Sharps – key of B or G#m (rarely used)
6 Sharps – key of F# or D#m (rarely used)
1 flat – key of F or Dm
2 flats – key of Bb or Gm
3 flats – key of Eb or Cm
4 flats – key of Ab or Fm
5 flats – key of Db or Bbm
6 flats – key of Gb or Ebm (rarely used)

  1. Know the typical chords used in each key signature (these are referred to as the harmonized scales):
MAJOR SCALE   R   -   2   -    3    4   -   5   -   6   -   7 
   C  maj.:   C   -   Dm   -   Em   F   -   G   -   Am  -  rarely
   Db maj.:   Db  -   Ebm  -   Fm   Gb  -   Ab  -   Bbm -  used
   D  maj.:   D   -   Em   -   F#m  G   -   A   -   Bm
   Eb maj.:   Eb  -   Fm   -   Gm   Ab  -   Bb  -   Cm
   E  maj.:   E   -   F#m  -   G#m  A   -   B   -   C#m
   F  maj.:   F   -   Gm   -   Am   Bb  -   C   -   Dm
   F# maj.:   F#  -   G#m  -   A#m  B   -   C#  -   D#m
   G  maj.:   G   -   Am   -   Bm   C   -   D   -   Em
   Ab maj.:   Ab  -   Bbm  -   Cm   Db  -   Eb  -   Fm
   A  maj.:   A   -   Bm   -   C#m  D   -   E   -   F#m
   Bb maj.:   Bb  -   Cm   -   Dm   Eb  -   F   -   Gm 
   B  maj.:   B   -   C#m  -   D#m  E   -   F#  -   G#m 

MINOR SCALE   R   -    2      b3  -   4    -       5      b6  -   b7
   A  min.:   Am   -   Bdim   C   -   Dm   -   Em or E    F
   Bb min.:   Bbm  -   Cbdim  Db  -   Ebm  -   Fm or F    Gb
   B  min.:   Bm   -   C#dim  D   -   Em   -   F#m or F#  G 
   C  min.:   Cm   -   Ddim   Eb  -   Fm   -   Gm or G    Ab
   C# min.:   C#m  -   D#dim  E   -   F#m  -   G#m or G#  A
   D  min.:   Dm   -   Edim   F   -   Gm   -   Am or A    Bb
   Eb min.:   Ebm  -   Fdim   Gb  -   Abm  -   Bbm or Bb (B)
   E  min.:   Em   -   F#dim  G   -   Am   -   Bm or B    C 
   F  min.:   Fm   -   Gdim   Ab  -   Bbm  -   Cm or C    Db 
   F# min.:   F#m  -   G#dim  A   -   Bm   -   C#m or C#  D
   G  min.:   Gm   -   Adim   Bb  -   Cm   -   Dm or D    Eb 
   G# min.:   G#m  -   A#dim  B   -   C#m  -   D#m or D#  E
  1. Know what each line and space represent on the treble and bass clefs. (See below)

Image source: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons

4. Now the hard part. If you know the key signature by the number of sharps and flats (item 1 above), then you know the basic chords to look for (item 2), and now you should be able to identify all the notes in each grouping of chords on your sheet music by using the chart in item 3. You will also need to know the notes that comprise each chord. Here’s a little help:

C# (or Db)….. C#-F-G# or (Db-F-Ab)
C#m (or Dbm).C#-E-G# or (Db-E-Ab)
Ebm …………Eb-Gb-Bb
Em………….. E-G-B
Fm………….. F-Ab-C
F# (or Gb)……F#-A#-C#
F#m (or Gbm).F#-A-C#
G…………… G-B-D

5. Many hymns that don’t have guitar chords do so for a reason, and typically it is because every note in the melody line theoretically requires a different guitar chord. If this is the case, your song will sound too choppy with a chord change on every beat. Songs that lend themselves well to guitar accompaniment typically have a chord change at the start of the measures or sometimes at the mid-point of the measures. For example, a song in 4/4 time might have a chord change before the first and maybe the third beats. Even if you’re hymn requires a unique chord for each note in the melody line – don’t do it! If 4/4 time, stick to the chord changes on the first and third beats. Also, listen for the “strong beats” and put the chord changes on those particular notes.

6. When you have finished putting chords to a musical piece, sit back and look at the song in its entirety, as opposed to the note-by-note study that you have just finished. Look for overriding chord patterns or progressions. Sometimes, you can delete certain chords that you have identified and use fewer chords that fit into an overall theme for the song. It also sometimes helps to replace the chord names with Roman numerals and then to look for repeating patterns.

This technique should get you started. There are other more advanced issues such as numbered chords (C2, C5, Csus, C7, etc.) and slash chords (D/A, D/F#, D/G, etc.) but these can come later.

Step Two – Consider adding a Chorus and maybe a Bridge

The Chorus:
Most hymns only have verses. Lots of verses. These verses tell a story. Sometimes it’s nice to respond to these verses with either a chorus or refrain and sometimes it’s nice to alter the musical accompaniment with a bridge.

When writing a chorus, think of it as an answer to the story being told in the verse. Also, the chorus is usually sung a bit higher than the verse and with more energy. Choruses are usually the “hook” of the song; they are the part that people will remember and sing throughout the upcoming week. The chorus will have a stronger chord progression than the more fragile verses and the chorus will typically use more of the tonic key notes than in the verses. Choruses can also talk about feelings, or how you should feel about the story being told in the verses. A good example of a hymn with a great chorus that you undoubtedly know is “Onward Christian Soldiers.” Another good example would be Chris Tomlin’s recent adaptation of “Amazing Grace” with his iconic chorus “My chains are gone, I’ve been set free. My God, my Savior, has ransomed me. And like a flood, His mercy reigns. Unending love. Amazing Grace.” Wow!

The Bridge:
The bridge offers melodic, lyrical and even harmonic variation. Bridges can be a welcome addition to hymns because the verses and even the chorus can be very repetitive. Oftentimes, bridges in songs written in major keys start with a minor chord and vice versa, and they almost never start with the tonic chord.

Next you will need a formula for the structure of your new hymn. Consider something like:
Verse 1, Verse 2, Chorus, Verse 3, Chorus, Bridge, Verse 4, Chorus, End

But there are unlimited combinations.

Step Three – Consider updating the lyrics

Read through the hymn lyrics. If they are in our CW hymnbook, they will be pretty awesome. However, some hymns use too many churchy words, too many archaic words, phrases no longer in use, old English, phrases that just didn’t translate well into English from the original language the hymn was written in and what I’ll call reverse poetry. Keep all these things if the hymn sings well and makes sense to you. Only make changes if the lyrics require you to research and study them immensly before you get the picture. Our hymnal has actually already come a long way. There were massive revisions between our current hymnal and it’s predecessor so you might be OK in this regard.

If you change lyrics, make sure that you do not change the message, the rhythm, or the meter (the number of syllables per measure). You may find a rhyming dictionary and a thesaurus to be helpful in this regard.

Step Four – Consider adding a Musical Turn Around

Most hymns just seem to run into a musical brick wall at the end of a verse and then awkwardly go back to the beginning. Update this! Add a short musical turn-around, perhaps just a measure or two, but find a way to musically tie the ending back to the beginning.

I know that many of you reading this post are in my denomination and have probably heard the band known as “Branches.” They have a great example of a musical turn around in their arrangement of “How Great Thou Art.” Just listen to Andy Braun and the band use a few simple chords to turn the end of each verse into a transition to get back to the beginning and you will know exactly what I am talking about. Braun’s turn-around makes an incredible hymn even more incredible and that’s the point of this effort.

Step Five – Consider Jazzing it Up

There are many ways to do this. Consider modulating the last verse up or down a whole step, or even a minor third, depending on the mood of the song. Or, take an instrumental break in between verses or simply add an intro. Another idea would be to use some chord extensions like ninths, elevenths, thirteenths or even major sevenths. Another thing you can do is add a few slash chords with inherent bass runs to connect the chords together.

Step Six – Say a Prayer of Thanks; you’ve made it.

Whew! That was a lot of work; but that hymn you’re considering redoing is worth it.

Tomorrow we will consider an example. “Praise God from Whom All Blessings Flow” that was redone by musician Michael Schroeder in 2010.

Music Is…

Music Is…

Music is the “viva cox evangelii” …
… the living voice of the Gospel

Music is powerful
Music is what feelings sound like
Music is the poetry of the air 1
Music is a gift from God that serves the WORD
Music is an outburst of the soul 2
Music is what life sounds like 3
Music is the literature of the heart; it commences where speech ends 4
Music is love in search of a word 5
Music is an explosive expression of humanity 6
Music is something we are all touched by 6

There is no such thing as “Godly style” or “unGodly style”

God preserved Psalm 22 but not the tune called “the Doe of the Morning” for a very good reason.

He who sings, prays twice 7

When words leave off, music begins. 8

When the church’s music ceases to sound, doctrine will disintegrate.9

A painter paints pictures on canvas
… A musician paints their pictures on silence.10

Next to the Word of God, the noble art of music is the greatest treasure in the world.11

Beautiful music is the art of the prophets that can calm the agitations of the soul; it is one of the most magnificent and delightful presents God has given us.11

1. Richter
2. Frederick Delius
3. Eric Olson
4. Alphonse de Lamartine
5. Sidney Lanier
6. Billy Joel
7. Augustine
8. Heinrich Heine
9. Melanchton
10. Leopold Stokowski
11. Martin Luther

Ministry Tool – Where to Find Free, Legal, Sheet Music

Ministry Tool – Where to Find Free, Legal, Sheet Music

Featured Website:


You need to check out this website, if you haven’t already found it on your own.  It’s an incredible resource.  They post free sheet music, anywhere from 3 to 10 songs per month at their site.  It’s usually contemporary music but I’ve seen them post new arrangements of hymns as well.  The site requires two things from you.  First, you have to register.  It’s free and they don’t bother you with email.  Second, you need to download a free program called “Scorch” which is produced by a company called Sibelus.  This is the program that you will need to view the free sheet music and to print it.  The program even allows you to transpose the music into different keys to suit your singing and playing abilities.

The instructions to download this program are shown at “worshiptogether” but you can also do it here:


Another great feature of this site is their little applet called the “new song jukebox.”  If you click on this, a player will load that enables you to listen to the free songs that you’ve just obtained as performed by the original artists.

If this isn’t enough, they offer one additional freebie.  It’s called the “New Song Cafe”.  Launch this and you will see the original recording artist explain one of the featured songs and they’ll even show you how to play it in the form of a video.

This is a priceless resource for all Pastors, Worship Leaders and Muisicans.  Check it out now or pass the site along to the guitarists and keyboard players in your church.

Finally – It’s always a good idea to report usage through your CCLI licenses!