1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

New to Praise Music

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by Kapellas, Nov 14, 2012.

  1. Kapellas


    Dec 2, 2010
    Flint, Mi
    Hey guys,

    I should start by saying I had no idea where to put this (feel free to move), and yes I know there is a Praise and Worship bassist Club floating around, but I dont have months to wade through hundreds of pages of chit chat about this stuff.

    I am not really a religious guy at all, but I am doing a gig with a praise band (possibly multiple gigs, who knows) this coming Sunday and I have no idea what to expect. The gig was brought to me through a drummer friend of mine who plays with the group on occasion, but is also extremely well known for his Jazz (how I met him).

    I should tell you guys that I am a fairly experienced bassist and musician, and I am well versed in Funk, Fusion, Rock, Jazz, Blues, Latin, and even classical (I am studying Double bass as an undergrad).

    I was kind of wondering if you guys could point me in the right direction of some tunes to listen to stylistically, and some quintessential praise bassists to study briefly. We are having a rehearsal sunday before the service, and to my understanding it is all lead sheets. I don't have anywhere to start and I would really like to come in knowing what I am doing.

    You guys are awesome. Thanks for the help!

  2. Kapellas


    Dec 2, 2010
    Flint, Mi
    Bump? I hope someone can help me out.
  3. P&W can cover a lot of ground, stylistically. Fred Hammond & RFC are great for urban gospel(I think- I'm no expert); Chris Tomlin is very middle-of-the-road *contemporary Christian*... Look into Hillsong United, listen to some contemp Christian radio stations... I hope this helps, and perhaps prods some others into posting. I hope your gig goes well. :)
  4. chuck norriss

    chuck norriss Banned

    Jan 20, 2011
    You really ought to get a shortlist from your friend. I'm surprised--churches typically want someone w same convictions to play with them but I'm sure it's not the first or last time an organization will call in a player.
    As far as the gig, you can expect a church service. You might ask them how they dress too.
    I'm somewhat new to it too. There are a few communicative Christians on tb but sometimes you (I) don't want to wade in the praise & worship club. You might post this there; give it a shot. The worst that can happen is nothing really.
  5. joebar


    Jan 10, 2010
    pretty basic stuff; i did it for a few years.
    praise=melodic=money chords
    usually diatonic stuff but quite often modulates up a half step.
  6. Kapellas


    Dec 2, 2010
    Flint, Mi
    Yeah, the preacher is a friend of the drummer and has seen me play a couple of jazz/funk gigs. He doesn't even know the set. Im not particularly worried about dress or individual tunes, Ill dress up enough to look classy. I was just trying to get a feel for the styles before the gig.

    Thank you guys for answering! I appreciate the help.
  7. Jhengsman


    Oct 17, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
    As others have mention the genre is rather diverse as are the order of services and sociology of the different church organizations and congregations. Just knowing you come a jazz and funk background and assuming your employing church knows this you may be in your preferred style. But then you might not
  8. khutch

    khutch Praise Harp

    Aug 20, 2011
    suburban Chicago
    A lot of churches have websites with video recordings (or links to them) of sermons but sometimes also complete worship services. I'd check that possibility out, if they have video then you will get a good look at exactly what they do. They must have a worship pastor or worship leader at the church who will pick the song list by Saturday at the latest. Keep asking for the song list and once you have it you should be able to find at least some of the songs on YouTube, etc. The suggestions made above are good but churches are all over the map and the more specific information you can get the better prepared you will be. My church is middle of the road, I have a friend who tells me his church is too during the service but they start off with a "free jam" where they may play anything, including things you would not expect to hear in church.

  9. Jhengsman


    Oct 17, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
    One thing is you probably won't have charts. Normally at best it is a lyric and chord sheet as most churches who utilize us, as oppose to just an organ, depend upon our ability to hear it and pick up a basic line in the few minutes of rehearsal time allocated per song. I would guess that there will be no signature bassline expected of you
  10. Kapellas


    Dec 2, 2010
    Flint, Mi
    Yeah I figured I wouldnt have to read ant sheet music, but either way is cool. I was told lead sheets, so I am assuming I will get a melody and some chords and I will be expected to groove off of it. Which is cool. Groove is my thing. Thank you guys a lot, I appreciate the help and insight.
  11. rotis

    rotis There is more

    Dec 28, 2011
    Church gigs vary wildly. If they pay modern rock type music expect lyrics with chords and a link to a youtube video. The worship team at my church wears jeans and shorts so get that dress code.
  12. If you can follow the lead sheets and play what you feel from the music you should be fine. It would be nice to have advanced notice of the song list in case there are any complicated songs but since they're winging it the songs could be easy ones.

    The best bet? Be ready for anything. :D
  13. Jhengsman


    Oct 17, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
    Did a musician tell you it would be "lead sheets"? I would expect no more then lyrics and chords. The stage setup may be close enough for the keyboardist, normally, to shout out keys and numbers to tell you where he is going. Your ear will be the major guide.

    Saying Praise and Worship music in its way is like saying rock music. Depending upon the usage it could be the broad category or a sub genre. You will need more information from your drummer friend to know exactly what genre they will be playing in. Since nobody has mentioned any uniformed dress between the band and choir yet I will assume they do not do that. Now you have to find out if it is a Sunday Best clothes wearing church or a casually dressing one. It may be the type where one guy is wearing a suit and the next is wearing shorts and sandals.

    You probably won't need to bring your own rig, but ask to make sure. Or just bring along a small club light weight travelling kit as a potential monitor/DI. If your amp needs to cover the house they should have it or tell you going in. If you have a skull and crossbones or other such stuff on your bass then bring your back up :D

    You will probably play the opening of the service around 30 minutes on average and a closing song. You may or may not be expected to stay in the band area during the sermon. Depending upon the type of church a service is an hour to two hours. And there may or may not be musical background and accents used during that sermon. If there is it is normally the piano and organist who do that sort of stuff. You may get distractions from the congregation, from bringing their own percussion to people getting up and dancing, waving flags and running around the church screaming in an unknown language. Or everybody might sit quietly as if in a concert hall. Just remember everybody else's religious expression looks weird to you while your's make perfect sense.
  14. SoVeryTired

    SoVeryTired Endorsing nothing, recommending much

    Jul 2, 2011
    Milton Keynes, UK
    Unfortunately all I can do is echo the sentiments of those who've advised you to get some more background details. Otherwise it's pretty much the same as being asked to play a gig, and being told that the genre is "music" - it's that broad. :)
  15. Beersurgeon


    Jul 16, 2010
    I just got hired by a church to play for their Sunday morning service and we play a rock/adult contemporary style. We get lyrics along with chords and I have been able to find most songs on the internet to get the chords and a feel of the song. What Jhengsman said is accurate with us too!
    I think the biggest thing with us is that you have to being paying attention at the end of songs because we like to extend the song and repeat chorus, bridges, etc. Hope this helps!
  16. I was kinda in the same situation as you a year ago. Got recruited by a friend, but I'm not particularly religious. It was a contemporary service, so it's modern "rock" type music. I had zero knowledge of this genre, couldn't name a single song. We have about 200 songs we draw from, but I'm actually digging lincoln brewster, and also planetshakers. These seem to be crowd favorites as well.
  17. steve_rolfeca

    steve_rolfeca Supporting Member

    Do you know anything about the church in terms of demographic?

    Urban mega-churches often have high-end gear and well-trained, knowledgeable musicians, while smaller churches tend to be a bit impoverished in both departments.

    If it's a smaller church, "lead sheets" might not be literal- more likely lyric sheets with chords over the top, often with the chords poorly placed and no bar lines indicated.

    It wouldn't hurt to bring a sansamp or DI and at least a small combo amp, regardless. I travel to a lot of small churches, and nothing spoils my fun more than finding out at the last minute that I need to play through a $30 DI. Or that the church-provided monitor or amp has a blown driver.

    Most of all, relax and enoy yourself!

    I did a few church services as a visitor 16 years ago, and never left. At it's best, church music is about community, feel and expressiveness more than technique.
  18. Beersurgeon


    Jul 16, 2010
  19. invalidprotocol

    invalidprotocol Supporting Member

    Dec 11, 2008
    I think I'm going to borrow this line...
  20. Jhengsman


    Oct 17, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
    That one belongs to Dennis Prager.