Dave Morgan from Canyon Hills Community Church in Bothell and formerly from Overlake Christian Church in Redmond, is a great worship leader who I look up to. One of the things he is great at is networking with other worship leaders and he hosts a worship leader’s network meeting a few times a year and we had such a meeting today, February 9th at 8:30 at his Church. We had all sorts of churches represented, including a great turnout of our movement (Converge World Wide, historically Swedish Baptist) as well as Eastside Foursquare, Gold Creek Community Church, Cedar Park Assembly and more.
We started out with a little food and then went right in to their main worship center for a great time of worship. Dave read a great quote from Louie Giglio about how we ALL worship, the question is what are we going to worship! We did three songs with various scriptures. To start with: Baloche’s “Hosanna”, Hillsong’s “Forever Reign”, Lincoln Brewster’s “God You Reign” and then had some quiet prayer time and ended with Chris Tomlin’s “Our God”.
Lots of great stuff to notice here. Wide open stage, very nice. Room has some difficulties with low ceiling and quite a few posts that are in the way. Great look and atmosphere in the room. Soft lighting, Nice ambient kind of lighting on the back wall. 3 screens including one in the center right above the drummer, plus a few other flat screens to make sure everyone can see. Lots of speakers but sounded great throughout the room. Lyrics were on time, very tastefull background video loops. Band sounded tight and musical. Gerty played deliciously on electric guitar. Had a fun pedal board and twin amps in boxes in the backroom all mic’ed up with brand new inexpensive ribbon mics “fatheads” which were about $400 for the pair. Fender Deluxe and Vox amp. Full stereo in the house too.
Dave Morgan himself had a couple of keyboards, a large weighted 8 key Yamaha I believe, and an M-audio Axiom running mainstage, of course ($29 now! see my other article) The drummer, Jeff, played really nice and simply and tastefully and energetically on his real cymbals and Pearl e-pro electronic drums. They sounded just a bit flat for my taste, but they say they’ve done a lot of testing and in the room as a whole these have sounded the best. I definitely liked the lack of shield and being able to see the drummers facial expression, but I’m not completely sold on the epro’s triggering drum samples (instead of just whatever is pre-loaded in the typical brain, they load samples in the back) Both Gerty and Jeff sang regularly and were very obviously engaged physically in worship! They didn’t have mics, but they didn’t need them! They were leading with their whole bodies! Koby did a great job of singing and playing guitar and doing most of the leading for the morning (he and Dave shared responsibilities that way) and there was a lovely young lady who sang beautiful harmonies, but I didn’t catch her name.
And then Tim Oas from Eastside played bass and stood on the super sweet buttkicker board that they made. I want one of these!
The drummer was using ableton live to trigger click, loops and tracks that they played along to. Some of the tracks they get from various places, some they make in house with Reason and they are open to sharing. If you want to know more contact them at www.CanyonHillsCommunityChurch.com
Then we went back into the fellowship room and continued our snacking while Andy Soemo, worship leader at Cedar Park Assembly as well as instructor at Northwest University showed us some ways that loops and clicks and tracks and even autotune can be used live in the service with tools like protools, ableton live, garageband, audacity, logic, … as well as a healthy discussion of making sure that technology is a tool that we use, a means to an end, not an end in and of itself. He recommended we check out www.groove3.com for great instructional videos on how to do all of this stuff.
The next get together is scheduled for May at Northshore Baptist where we’ll be talking about the theology of worship.
Thanks Dave Morgan for calling us all together for a very enriching, learning, networking experience as well as a wonderful time of simply giving glory to the one and only living God, who certainly is worthy!
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