Posted by Craig Borlase on 10 June 2014

It was once said that to lead worship you need to stay out of the way, let people see God and make sure there are no distractions. And because those distractions are often a result of us not being quite prepared enough, here are five things every guitar playing worship leader should have with them at all times.

 

1. A Full Set Of Spare Strings

You’re going to have a string break during worship; it’s not a case of if but when. As soon as one goes it’s going to do a number of things; first it going to put the other strings out of tune and second it’s going to distract you. You need to make sure you have a spare that you can change as soon as you can. But don’t stop the song or the set, wait until there’s a natural break and then take a moment to go somewhere out of sight to change it.

 

2. A String Winder

A handy little tool, a string winder will help you replace a string in seconds. Get one and make sure you always have it with you.

 

3. A Guitar Tuner

As the room temperature falls or rises, the tuning of your guitar will change. And if you want to distract people from God then play an out of tune guitar, it works every time! But while there are lots of tricks for tuning guitars - from using the 5th fret to using harmonics - the best way to stay in tune is to use an electronic guitar tuner. If you have a guitar with a jack then get one that is pedal based that you can keep checking your guitar with between songs. 

 

4. Gaffa Tape

Gaffa tape has a multitude of uses, but one cool one is an instant plectrum holder on a mic stand. Take a 12” strip of gaffe tape, turn it inside out and make a loop so the sticky side is outwards. Then stick it to the top of your mic stand and use it to keep your plectrums safe. Plectrums are sneaky and always disappear when you need them - this trick keeps them under control.

 

5. The Words

You might know every worship song off by heart and be able to sing them backwards in Chinese, but it’s always good to make sure you have the song words in front of you when leading. However well you know the song, in a moment of sheer exuberance you might just have an Adrian Plass moment and proclaim that ‘she is Lord!’ Best you know what words come when and in the right order.

 

In some ways all these 5 tips are no-brainers, but sometimes we miss the simple things. We hope these 5 tips will keep the focus on the Lord and not on anything you would rather not have seen!

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