Christian Worship Music 4 violin 01:48 on Tuesday, October 22, 2002
One other thing, I`ve heard a violin played in a Praise and Worship band... and it was awesome!!! I`ve tried to do the same, but I can`t seem to play behind a guitar if I don`t have the music- I`m not one to good at free-stylin`. If you could help I`d be very appreciated! Thanx!
Re: Christian Worship Music 4 violin 22:12 on Wednesday, February 05, 2003
Hello, I have played classical violin for 19 years. A few years ago I had the opportunity to play in worship but they had no music. Instead they handed me a page of lyrics and chord symbols! So I have been in the process of learning improve in worship. I answered your question as follows because I think you can learn improve in worship even without music. There are varying levels of improve complexity depending on your skill of violin playing and a working knowledge of theory but even a little bit of knowledge can go along way in being a huge blessing in worship.
Playing the Roots: You might start first by playing the root of the chords as they change with the words. This is something that you can read and follow. If the chord reads C then play a C until the next chord changes i.e. G and then play G. The whole notes surprisingly add a lot for their simplicity and it will get you started.
Playing the chord members: Next, you might branch out to playing other notes of that chord as long as it is held until the next chord change and so on. From here you can gain confidence and experiment into nonharmonic tones – these are notes that aren’t in the chord but are played in passing like a scale passage over a C major chord. You might try playing a short scale starting from C (C chord) to G (G chord).
Adding rhythm and range: Adding in little ‘flurishes’, trills or just a general variety of 8th, 16th and half notes adds a lot of interest in playing the members of the chord. For fast songs, I will often listen to the guitar strum for rhythm and play a pure rhythm pattern on the chord changes. This can be very effective and add a lot of excitement. Range always adds color and intensity. The lower register (all strings in first position) are really good for all worship songs. Usually I have found that beyond 3rd position is not good when you play with voices; it is fine for intros or interludes. Something about the timbre through the sound system makes it sound funny with the voices.
Tone and harmony: Beautiful tone has been one of the key elements of playing worship music. Whatever you play, whether simple or complex, be also aware of the sound - beauty has an edifying and elevating effect. It is a good rule not to play the melody with the voices. Use harmony instead or whole notes under the voices. I do a lot of ‘weaving” in and out of chord changes, sometimes picking up harmony but degressing from it in a scale passage or a jump into a new register or into beautiful long notes on the chord changes.
Team work: Instrumentals in a worship band add the spice so don’t feel that you have to play every song or even all of the songs. You get to make lots of artistic choices about when you come in (first time, second time, chorus, intro, etc) and what register or sound you want to achieve that goes along with the lyrics and spirit of the song.
Listening: The best advantage is having a good ear and allowing yourself to anticipate the chord changes and to just play. This part came easier as I learned to follow the chord changes so I didn’t get lost. I still make mistakes but I smile and just think, “Oh well, it was a nice nonharmonic note!” Listening to your team will be a huge part in helping you be sensitive to the songs and to better know what to do to add interest and beauty.
God bless! Hope this will be helpful to you.
Re: Christian Worship Music 4 violin 07:25 on Monday, February 10, 2003
i have been invloved with my school`s worship band for 2 months, and i still dont get the idea of violin improvisation, though i`ve read up lots about it. would be grateful if anyone can teach me through e-mail or something. one question though, when i play the chord note and listen to the other players, the sound dosent really sound `right` any advise on why this happens? or is it something natural? and does anyone of you know where to read up in depth on violin improvisation and stuff? thnx
Re: Christian Worship Music 4 violin 16:30 on Tuesday, April 29, 2003
Todd: Rachel has some good advice. I am really bad at improvising on the fly. I`ll sit down at the piano, find the chords, then try to pick out where the chords "connect" to each other - so I play up or down a whole or half step instead of just chord roots. I HAVE to write it on the music.
I also will play alto or tenor parts alot, or find a moving part off the keyboard music. Descant parts can be quite effective on the violin, but usually it`s best if they`re not being sung. (I disagree with Rachel about playing with the melody, although I think it`s more fun to play something else.)
Another effect to try is playing the last verse or two up an octave.
Most of our music comes from OCP Publications (Oregon Catholic Press) and at least half of it will have solo instrument parts already written. Don`t worry - they have contemporary music! 1-800-LITURGY
Arthur: I`m also learning about improvising parts. Find a spot where everyone else is on a whole note. Write out quarter notes from that chord, then change them to eighth notes and fill in between them with connecting or jumping eighth or sixteenth notes. (Easier shown than said - I hope you can follow that.)
If the guitars are playing a chord, and you`re playing a note in that chord it should not sound bad. Are you sure everyone`s in tune?
Re: Christian Worship Music 4 violin 00:45 on Sunday, May 25, 2003
I`m not a violinist but it is an instrument that I have greatly warmed up to, hear lately. The violin is so intemate and romancing, in a worship setting, that I just need to get more. I think that it`s awesome that you guys are so interested in improv. That`s why I am searching the net for Worship CD`s containing more improv. You know there are couple of people that I can turn you on to that are part of a non denominational church in the Charlotte NC area that emphezise a lot on spirit led worship (or improv). They host many conferences in the area throughout the year and it would be a great experience to see this type of worship style played as a norm first hand, if you haven`t been exposed to it much. The church is called Morning Star and the founding pastor`s name is Rick Joyner. They are a world renowned church due mostly to the many books published by Rick. They even have there own school of ministry where they train and equip people to do the will of the Lord and worship plays a big part in that. They have services on Friday nights which are awesome to go to.
One of the main worship leaders there is name Leonard Jones. He can play just about any stringed instrument on planet earth. He`ll tell you though that he is best at the violin and the guitar because they are the instruments that he`s played the longest. The other ones are mandolin, citar( a kind of east Indian guitar, very unique sound),recorder, bongos, and more. Like Lulu said, you gotta see sometimes where your instrument might fit best in a worship piece. I`ve seen Leonard start out with the violin for a few minutes and while the rest of the band continues to play he`ll move to pick up the electric guitar all while leading the worship song with a head mounted wireless microphone. Morning Star writes all there own worship music. You rarely almost never hear them play any of the main stream worship tunes out there. That`s because Rick Joyner early in the church`s history encouraged his worship players to tap into that creative spirit that the Lord releases.
The other person`s name is Don Potter. He only plays the acoustic guitar and let me tell you, you`ll never hear anyone play that acoustic like him. You can hear him on various older Morning Star CD`s. He has his own web site and has some very insighteful teachings about the "worship leader" and the "worship band". Definately check those out. On Don`s website you can check his itinerary. A note of interest there is that he like`s to go to Redding California to teach at a worship school. Don`t know much about it but looks interesting. Knowing that Don does a lot in improv, I would assume that this school does as well.
Ray Hughes is another name affiliated with Morning Star. Once a pastor at one of MS`s two or three satellite churches, he is very, very, very knowledgable about worship and instruments. He`s studied and even writen a book about all the instruments and their origins for as far back as can be docummented. Within the last month Ray has resigned as pastor and is in the process of starting a worship school in Nashville TN.
Suzy Wills is also a worship leader at Morning Star and although she doesn`t play any instruments to my knowledge she lends her beautiful voice in such a profound way that many times I have left conferences and Friday night meetings in awe. You don`t need an instrument to improv. She has a solo CD out called Simple where you can hear her close friends Leonard Jones and Don Potter aspire to touch the heavens with their spirit led worship.
Well I hope that this is a start for you that are interested in more improv. You won`t get any better than the people at Morning Star. I was at a three day conference one time and I felt that the song was already long but enjoying every minute of it. So I bought the worship video for that meeting and timed the song. It lasted for forty seven minutes. That`s called improv or spirit lead. Generally the way they work a song is they go through the song a few times and maybe before, during or after they go into spirit lead playing.
Re: Christian Worship Music 4 violin 00:03 on Tuesday, May 27, 2003
got those websites that you wanted. the first one is "morningstarministries.org" . that`ll be a good one. you can listen on real player some excerps of all the songs on their various cd`s they have about twelve total so the ones they have are just a few. but at any rate you can kind of get a sense of what their music is all about. the other one is "donpottermusic.com". check him out and click on to his discography and see who he`s all played for in his carreer. pretty impressive. check out his articles as well.
what state do you live in laura? is worship music something that your into at all? I tell ya. if people could go to MS`s church and see first hand their music, I think that more people would love to go to church. the music you hear on those cd`s is what they play on sunday mornings and all the time at their church. tell me that wouldn`t shake some churches? well enjoy. let me know what you think. mike
Re: Christian Worship Music 4 violin 18:10 on Friday, May 30, 2003
hmmm, well, I think we both agree that most churches do need a good shake! I went to that MS site and listened to some clips. I`ll have to say their music isn`t exactly on my top ten list (the lyrics seem to lack theology... call me picky). Don`t take that to mean I`m the `hymns-only` type. Of course hymns have their place (esp when they`re spiced up a little), but God provides every generation with their `own` music with which to worship him, right!?
yea, i also checked out that don potter site, the articles - the one I read - was ehh, conraversial, I think he misinterpreted the text. I`m a great one for debates/discussions, so if you wanna really get into this stuff email me, k?
P.S. are you tellin me that this Leonard Jones dude can play the violin and sing at the same time?!!? now that`s TALENT!!!
Re: Christian Worship Music 4 violin 23:04 on Saturday, May 31, 2003
hey, first off let me start by saying that Leonard does not sing while playing the violin. He uses the head set mic so he can move around his corner of the stage where he has his various stringed instruments set up for easy access. A mic on a stand limits his movements probably. Because he plays so many instruments he feels the song and if it needs a violin at a certain part he`ll play it or maybe acoustic guitar or I`ve seen him start maybe an upbeat song with the mandolin and then move into the electric guitar. I first got introduced to MS through a CD called Fly me like the Wind and when I popped that disc in and heard the first song I was turned off. I sampled the rest of the songs and put it away. When my sister`s friend wanted to get her cd back months later I listened to it from start to finish. I started to appreciate it. Sometimes when your use to a certain way of hearing things or seeing things and something new comes along to shake you a bit and catch you off guard, one gets turned off. That`s what happened to me. When the opportunity came for me to go to Morning Star and see for myself I was taken back because it was then that I saw and appreciated the huge talent.
You know music is sooo deeply rooted in our spirit. There`s something about the flow of rythmic sounds that end up being somewhat like benchmarks or hashmarks in our journey of life that in my opinion we just can`t even begin to describe. Have you ever heard a song lately that was around when you where younger and taken you back to that place and time in your memory? That`s powerful stuff. (that was a rabbit trail) back to my point
About the Don Potter articles: It`s o.k. to disagree. We`re all individuals with colorful opinions, but let me say that in everthing you do, say or critique, make sure it lines up with the Bible. It`s God`s blueprint for our lives. Get aquainted with it. Know what it says. Apply what lines up and move on. My hope is that you give it some time though and really see their musical abilities and the way they flow. That leads me to my final point for tonight and that is the way they set up on stage. Traditionally you have the worship leader towards the front of the stage with the rest of the band members behind that leader. At MS they set up in a U shape so that they can all see each other and it helps them to look at each other and watch for cord changes and stuff. To me that is key especially when you do as much improve as they do. Now what happens is that the worship leader has eye contact and during a song if he/she feels that a certain band member is about to burst out with spontinaity on their instrument all the worship leader has to do is look at them to give them the O.K. to go. It`s wild.
Re: Christian Worship Music 4 violin 17:54 on Friday, June 06, 2003
eh, heh. I see what yer saying - and the way you described their stage setup really makes sense (extra points there). But it seems to me the principles/phlosophy/theory behind the music is much more important than the musician or the stage setup. That`s why I mentioned the thing about every generation having their `own` music. Hymns a while back, other stuff now - but all the really good stuff carries the same undercurrent of truth - which is all Christianity is. I think that not only the lyrics, but also every instrument and technique involved should reflect Christ. I personally don`t think rock, for example, should be employed very often when conveying truths about God or when worshipping. At the same time, we need to be careful that we don`t get so light and fluffy that we diminish the reality of the message. I`m rambling, please forgive me.
Anyway, you keep mentioning that they do lots of improv... the way you use it seems to indicate that they just start with a chord progression then go off on tangents when one or more instruments wants to - ? How can they keep unity with spontaneous changes like that? or are they remaining within the progression and letting an electric guitar peep out a bit here and there, then mebbe a clarinet or something. Theoretically that would work out alot better (and its fun too!) Do you play anything? if so have you ever played with them?
*grins* gee, I guess I`m getting a little long-winded, huh?
Re: Christian Worship Music 4 violin 10:51 on Saturday, June 07, 2003
I hope that I don`t sound too redundant talking about MS, however there really are a lot of interesting concepts to grasp from their ministry. One of the single most qualities that I admire about them is, how at ease they are about letting newcommers try things that they might not be too familiar with. Take for example my situation. MS has a TV ministry, although they have above average equipment then most churches who broadcast a signal which looks like their still using a camcorder manufactured in the late eighties; MS is on a type of Dish Network called God TV. Basically it`s a dish that only broadcasts Christian ministries from around the world. I have some TV experience in operating cameras on a tripod. MS has two boom cameras. Which if you don`t know what those are it`s best described as a camera mounted on the end of a pool and can give you cool shot by sweeping over people and stuff. I`ve always wanted to learn that. So in their anouncments one Sunday they had a training day for camera operators and I showed up. Got a little practice on it and found out that it definately needed a little bit of skill and getting use to. Within two weeks I got a call from Dean who co-runs the TV ministry and told me that there`s no better way to get good at something than to just go out there and do it. Two Sundays later I`m working the big boom camera. Last week was my second time at it, they were using my shots often during worship. It goes on... They have what`s called a "ten minutes speaker" who comes to the pulpit before the main speaker for the service. A lot of times it`s young kids. Kids I`ve seen as young as 8 yrs old. They are given a topic about two to four weeks in advance and asked to study it. Search the Bible, encouraged to ask the Lord for insight on the subject. When they end up doing their ten minutes, sometimes you`re sitting in amazement as to the depth of their findings. All this is done to train individuals for bigger things. Certainly, if your doing the speaking thing, it would be to overcome speaking in front of massive groups of people. To bring the matter back to the forum, the same goes for the worship. Many of these kids that come to the MS School of Ministry are musicians and have writen their own stuff and this is a place that is not affraid to let them loose and experiment. These people have the goods. Why is it that in most peoples` thinking, they say you haven`t made it "Big" until you get exposure and a recording contract with a major label? Shouldn`t it be the other way around? You should be considered a success when you can play for the Lord. The creator and inventor of music and rythem.
Which that leads me to my next point. Why shouldn`t all kinds of formats be played in worship? Jazz, Rock, Heavy Metal, Rap, etc. ? STAY WITH ME..... Think about it. If God/Christ...The creator and inventor of the Earth and everything in existance, also created rythem and music, then doesn`t even the most heathenistic person have to approach the Lord in the Heavenlies to tap into that song that they supposedly wrote? Who gave them that in the first place? I don`t know if there`s an answer to that but feel free to comment.
Needless to say I`ve recently been inspired to learn an instrument. So naturally for me the guitar seemed a logical step in that direction. I have a good friend who started a business teaching musical instruments and has gathered together ten to fifteen teachers teaching various instruments. I`m in my third lesson week. I`m thrilled obout the progress. I should be a serious camp fire threat in about a yr
Til next time mike
Re: Christian Worship Music 4 violin 17:11 on Friday, June 13, 2003
ok, I`m noting a theological conrtradiction here. Question: how could `the most heathenistic person` possibly `approach the Lord in the Heavenlies`?? We are, I`m assuming taking about a non-Christian here. Now isn`t only by way of Jesus that we can access the Father? And how could we approach Jesus except in absolute humility and worring first and foremost about the condition of our souls, not some song. I`m not saying that`s the only thing a believer should concern himself with when in communion with the Lord, but for what purpose do the heathen come to the Lord other than to ask for their pardon? Your reasoning would justify the argument that since God created everything, everything is considered good by him. It was `good` in the garden, but then we had to mess it up. Think of all the other things that could be blamed on God if Heavy Metal, Rap, Punk Rock, ect. could be!? (gee, I guess i don`t sound very appreciative of those styles of music - music?) :/ *grins* sorry, feeling a little intolerant at the moment) Now I don`t see anything wrong with say Heavy Metal, I just haven`t yet found a theme in the Bible that would be conveyed best using that style.
What type of music do you listen the rest of the week?
Good luck on the guitar - its an awesome instrument!
Re: Christian Worship Music 4 violin 01:42 on Monday, June 16, 2003
I`ve been playing violin (acoustic and electric) with worship groups for about 4 years now, both as an amateur and a professional. I`ve also ended up covering a rather large range of styles, as I`ve done some studio work and played with some groups that came to town on tours. The upshot of all of this is that I`ve found the easiest way to get into improvising is to "just do it." I thought it would be good at first to stress out about hitting chord changes and knowing exactly when to play the dominant or the tonic or whatever, but honestly, it just freaked me out.
What worked for me was having a serious knowledge of scales, and then just working those into whatever key the song is in. Get out your Flesch book or whatever you use, and become comfortable in every key. Guitarists for this sort of thing tend to like E, G, D, and C, for starters. Then, as you`re playing with the group, work around in these scales. If a "bad" note happens, keep playing it, because a chord that fits it will come around soon enough, and you`ll sound *jazzy*. There are no bad notes, just jazz notes! And remember, any note fits in a violin solo, as long as you bend it enough!
Anyway, good luck! And I`d be happy to try and help if you have any more questions.
Re: Christian Worship Music 4 violin 00:07 on Wednesday, June 18, 2003
I would say that the school that I`m about to recommend to you would probably require you to know your instrument on an average level. Beginners might be shun away. Right now this is the only real worship school soully devoted to worship. The website is bethleredding.org. check them out. the registration deadline is july 1 with classes starting on the same day. ending day for the school is August 8th.