Prelude Blog

The Concert Band in Church

Posted on Dec 31, 2012 10:33:41 AM by Jeff Doebler in concert band, in descants, in hymn arrangements, in Instruments and Ensembles, in leading

Part Two: Hymns

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Your Ally, The Guitarist

Posted on Aug 27, 2012 8:32:12 AM by Paul Friesen-Carper in ally, in guitar, in Instruments and Ensembles, in leading

Especially in church music, there is an often uneasy relationship between guitarists and keyboardists. Some regard guitar playing as imprecise or simple-minded. And in return some regard keyboard playing as unfeeling or convoluted. But the needs of the church do not afford us the indulgence of mutual skepticism. The Church is recognizing that we need assembly song that is conceived both with guitar accompaniment and with keyboard accompaniment. Yet most church musicians are still trained as keyboardists, and are taught to play guitar-based music by transferring it to piano. This has benefits (autonomy & control) and drawbacks (a different feel & the lost opportunity to open leadership possibilities). Often the solution is to cross the lines of skepticism and embrace your ally, the guitarist.

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Introductions and Turnarounds

Posted on Aug 6, 2012 7:23:10 AM by Valerie Lefever Hughes in Assembly Song, in Introductions, in leading, in organ, in tactus


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Articulation and Accent

Posted on Jul 30, 2012 7:16:02 AM by Tim Getz in accent, in articulation, in Assembly Song, in leading, in organ, in tactus


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Tactus and Tempo

Posted on Jul 23, 2012 7:50:49 AM by John Jahr in Assembly Song, in leading, in tactus, in tempo

“The organist plays so fast I can hardly catch my breath.”

“Every hymn is like a dirge; why can’t the organist play faster?”

These are phrases we’ve probably all heard at least once. Exasperated parishioners will use whatever language they know to describe a common issue in worship. What is the right tempo for a hymn? Is there a “right” tempo for a hymn? And how do we enliven our assembly song so that our hymns do not feel like “a dirge?”

I would suggest that many tempo issues have nothing to do with tempo at all, instead that the TACTUS is not clear. While tempo is important, and we will discuss that later, the most important concept to keep in mind when leading assembly song is that of tactus.

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