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Do you get paid for playing at Church?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by tuBass, Feb 26, 2003.

  1. not at all

    36 vote(s)
  2. full scale, only way to do it

    1 vote(s)
  3. Just a little to cover gas and expenses

    1 vote(s)
  4. Yes, but I'd do it for free if I had to

    4 vote(s)
  1. tuBass


    Dec 14, 2002
    Mesquite, Texas
    Just wondering if more of you do it to help out your worship service, or you wouldn't do it if it wasn't for the money
  2. wulf


    Apr 11, 2002
    Oxford, UK
    It would be interesting if you could break it down by nations. Based on what I've picked up from the Churchbass list, us UK folk (including me) are virtually never payed, while our US counterparts are more likely to be getting a paycheck (although there are still plenty who do it for free).

    I guess another factor might be the size of the church - mine sometimes gets up to about 50+ adults and 25+ children (although normally less, and not all of those are regular members); I would expect much larger churches to be more likely to maintain professional bands.


    MAJOR METAL The Beagle Father Staff Member Supporting Member

    When a Catholic Priest , Brother,Sister run's a band they just recive their Stipend it is all apart of serving the Church so i am not making the big $. The Layity usually get paid like an Organist. Most of the time the only ones getting paid is the person running the Band ,choir. With the teens i have at my church i treat them with Pizzia and Strings,sticks,etc. They deserve it with the time they put in.
  4. CS


    Dec 11, 1999
    UK 400 seater church Band Leader is paid part time by the church (works full time).

    I don't get paid but

    I can claim for strings (don't) I often get offered lifts (sometimes take them) the church has a supply of 9v batteries (thank you) there were two church tuners (stolen :rolleyes: ) I have had minor repairs paid for (thank you) we also get free tea and coffee fed at Christmas and can use the church premises and PA for extra cirricular rehearsals (which saves me £20 a shot-thank you).

    The band leader provides bottled water and sweets (candy) for extra rehearsals.

    I would do it for free free but the little things are nice

    BTW the church supplies a keyboard a drum kit and are looking into backline.
  5. DigMe


    Aug 10, 2002
    Waco, TX
    I played bass for three years on the worship team of a fairly large church (served over 2000 people every Sunday) and I never got, nor wanted pay. There was a full-time worship pastor (being an "official pastor" he also had other jobs like foreign missions though) and a part time guy who split the music leading responsibilities with the worship pastor that both got paid.

    Now I play in an independent worship band in a different town. We play for free at a weekly college ministry at our home church. Aside from that people pay us to come play at various services and events, most of which I'd actually probably do for only travel expenses but it's cool that they're willing to pay us. We also have original alt-rock tunes and we do shows as performance at various venues. Those are usually paid of just like any other band.

    brad cook
  6. In my own Lutheran church, only the organist and music director are paid for weekly service. Special guests are paid but I think this is usually because they are doing it to support their ministry.

    I was asked to play as a guest musician for Chistmas Eve services at another Lutheran church and, though no pay was offered or discussed, I was recently sent a sizable check for my services. some of the best pay I've ever received as a musician. Since it was unexpected, I sent back most of it in the form of a donation to the music department.
  7. malthumb


    Mar 25, 2001
    The Motor City
    Most of the players (all instruments) that I know get paid for playing in church. Me personally, I've never asked to get paid. In one situation where the church insisted on paying me, I gave it back in the offering. For a couple special concerts, I let them buy me two sets of strings (one set for each bass that I took to the gig).

    If music were my occupation, I would accept pay for it in any venue. I'd also do some gratis for the love of the mission and for the love of playing. Since my everyday occupation more than pays for my lifestyle, hobbies, and habits, I don't see a need to expect pay for play with the church.

    Now, if I ever get off my butt and start up a 70's - 80's funk cover band I'd certainly expect to get paid, because my time is valuable. But I often give of my time freely for the church. Just sometimes I happen to be holding a bass when I'm doing so.


  8. Fishface


    Jul 26, 2002
    Denver, Colorado
    I've played for a few churches for a number of years and have never been payed for it. I've received a few sets of strings, though.

    I think I might feel strange getting paid for it. I really do think that it is a worship/sacrifice that I am giving. Though a full time worship leader is a different story. They have to be able to eat! But me giving a few hours of my time seems easy (though, sometimes not :D ).
  9. BertBert


    Nov 9, 2002
    I consider playing at my church to be part of my tithe. We're supposed to give the firstfruits not only of money but also time and talents as well. The church does have a pretty good PA system and springs for monitors, direct boxes, cords, etc. -- stuff that could conceivably be used for all kinds of church functions, so in that sense the church is putting up some money for me to play in an indirect way. (Think I could talk them into getting an Avalon direct box...?)
  10. Our church currently can't afford a full-time pastor, so I'd say we're a good way off being able to pay the musicians. I can't imagine ever taking money, though, it just wouldn't feel right.
  11. 5stringDNA


    Oct 10, 2002
    Englewood, CO
    I actually go to two churches and only one uses guitars to any significant extent. The one that does rents a building and i play occasionally for worship and enjoyment on wednesdays. I didn't even know anyoen but the rogan/pianist got paid to paly at churches...It wouldn't really seem right for me to take money for playing even if I did it every week.
  12. JohnL


    Sep 20, 2000
    Grayson, GA
    I'm not paid either, but other than the Monday night rehearsals, I'd be there Sunday anyway, and I'm getting to play some pretty kicking stuff with a great drummer and guitarist. I really enjoy playing with these guys more than most bands I've been in.
  13. iplaybass


    Feb 13, 2000
    Houston, TX
    I played in my church band before they decided to break us up, and I did not get paid. We did get free food, however, so I guess it all came out even in the end.
  14. T.B. Player

    T.B. Player

    Aug 10, 2002
    Orange, Texas
    I think pay depends on the size of the church. If you attend a 10,000 member church that has service every night then you would have to have that as your career due to time and I've heard of that. Personally, I don't get paid and wouldn't except pay from my church, but if my church was that big I would do it in a heartbeat. I imagine in a church that big you'd have several other duties than just bassist and they would probably ask you to help in other ministries.

    I do play about 5 times a week though at church so I do let them buy me strings. I mike my own amp and use my own DI though, but thats my choice. I can't think of a more fulfilling gig.
  15. I answered no because I don’t get paid at my own church. I also don’t play every Sunday, just when they need me for more contemporary music. I should say that no one in the choir gets paid either. Just the Music Director, which is a paid, half-time staff position. In my own Church, I look at it as part of using my God given talents in support of my Church to worship. When we use special, “outside” musicians (not members of the congregation) for special, musical situations, they get paid. When I’ve played at other venues, I expect to be paid like any other outside musician.
  16. Benbass


    Jan 28, 2002
    I'm doing it for free. Don't expect to get paid unless so much is required of me that it affects my ability to support myself through other means.
  17. Chris A

    Chris A Chemo sucks!

    Feb 25, 2000
    Manchester NH
    I get paid, but it's for leading the group, not specifically for playing bass. I pick the tunes, rehearse the group, write tunes specifically for the group, attend liturgy committee meetings, and settle "disagreements". I think I'm worth every penny.:D

    Chris A.:rolleyes: :bassist:


    Mar 3, 2001
    Ada, Ok
    I dont think i'd take the money if they offered it to me. (which they don't :rolleyes: ) The church is only a mile or so away and it doesn't cost me anything, so it isnt that big of a deal, but i guess it depends on the situation. They probably wouldn't let me in if i asked for their money :) :bag:
  19. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Don't like the poll!!

    So - where's the most obvious option :

    "I will receive my payment in the hereafter!! ;)
  20. tuBass


    Dec 14, 2002
    Mesquite, Texas
    now now Bruce, didn't anybody ever tell you the phrase "faith, not works"? True faith produces works, but not the other way around.