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Sunday Setlist Aug. 30th – “BEST” Ever!

So this week I was terribly busy prepping for leading worship at River and for our normally scheduled youth activities then we got the rest of the equipment for the FireStudio and wanted to install and set that up as well. SO CRAZY! I think most of my struggle came from wanting to do what I wanted to do for music on Sunday instead of shutting up and listening to the Spirit lead me because once I did that everything came together! Here’s how it went down:

True Love – Phil Wickham – E
Happy Day – Tim Hughes – C

Morning Music:
O, for 1,000 Tongues to Sing – Crowder – G
How He Loves – Crowder – A
I Love You Lord – ??? – D
Jesus Paid it All – Kristian Stanfill – A

Offertory: Your Name – Phil Wickham’s version with Paul Baloche – G

Communion: None But Jesus – Hillsong – C

Closing song:
In Christ Alone – Matt Papa – E

So…YEAH…that’s a lot of songs for us! But it was terribly fun. The team killed too! We just had electric, bass, drums, 2 backing vocals, and I swapped from acoustic to electric and back. The two backing vocals were students and I actually had picked None But Jesus for them to sing together for Communion and when we got to practice once said “OH, I LOVE that first acoustic song on there!” So I had them sing True Love as well 🙂 It was awesome seeing these two girls take it on like that!

The next thing you might notice are keys. This past year not leading worship, I’ve really become aware of how a key can kill any idea of me singing on Sunday morning or promote me to really sing out. I also noticed that when I just show up to church, I haven’t warmed up or practiced or done anything to help promote my ability to sing THEREFORE when I lead I need to be uber-aware that I’m singing with a bunch of people just like that! So I dropped the keys for How he Loves, Jesus Paid it All, and In Christ Alone. I’ve got to say, I was pretty anxious about that decision and whether the songs would sound flat or dull but they didn’t and it proved to be a great decision because WOWZERS I heard people singing out!

Lastly, the theme of the morning was where God really showed up! We had a guest preacher this week and that’s always hairy because while my advice was to “pick songs on the name of Jesus and the transforming power of His name. And I’d really like Your Name done” that’s a real wide berth to operate under. However, the songs and the message were 1 huge arrow pointing towards Jesus and it was like we sat down side by side and handpicked all the songs together to highlight portions of his message. I guess we did by allowing the Holy Spirit to work us 🙂
I had 2 “themes” I was working: the love of Jesus showcased by 1,000 Tongues and How He Loves that transferred into a response song with I love You Lord and focused on the cross: Jesus Paid it All. What was ridiculous was how perfectly that set everything up and In Christ Alone was a great exclamation point for the day.

I’m still reeling on the morning and how it went but I’ve rambled long enough. More on that this afternoon.

As always check out the rest of the Sunday Setlists at Fred‘s Blog Carnival!


Sunday Setlist Aug. 23rd – 3rd Guitarist!

It’s been like FOR-EV-VER since I did a Sunday Setlist but I only try to do them when I’m leading (which will be this weekend!) or in this case a special scenario where I get to play with one of my heroes! But first, the songs:

  • Prelude – Amazing Grace (My chains are gone) instrumental
  • Starter – Open the Eyes of My Heart
  • Come Ye Sinners
  • Your Grace is Enough
  • Mighty to Save
  • Amazing Grace (My chains are gone)
  • Offering – Offering – Paul Baloche
  • Communion – noodling
  • Closing – My Hope is You

The second service an audible was called swapping the order:

  • Come Ye Sinners
  • Your Grace is Enough
  • My Hope is You
  • Mighty to Save
  • Offering
  • Communion
  • Closing – Amazing Grace (My chains are gone)

Interestingly enough they both worked. The second though did close the service more in line with the message that morning.

So I might be using the term “hero” a bit loosely but Kevin Smith is a phenomenal musician (and you can buy his music here on iTunes) and who used to play in bands that I looked up to when I was wet behind the ears trying to do it in college. I end up finding a church that has his brother on drums (really a hero of mine! I ❤ Bubba Fong!) and I’ve gotten the tremendous opportunity to play with his other brother on percussion and now finally with Kevin. So it was a fun morning simply with that happening, but also because I got to play 3rd guitarist and sing back up! I mean 3rd guitarist! That’s the best place to sit! Adding ambiance and thickness, there isn’t a whole lot of pressure b/c you could quite possibly not do anything and it not really be noticed but if you do play just right then it sets the place over the top with that added little bit of: hey what was that? I LOVE getting a third guitarist! When I lead it makes all the difference in the world for me and this time I got to be that guy for Kevin and our team.

So not a whole lot of special happening with the songs, all familiar ones but some cool stuff happened. Open the Eyes, I got to use the Phaser (set to stun of course.) We played a funky fresh version of Come Ye Sinners, I think it might have been in Dm? Your Grace was awesome b/c I again used the Phaser in the choruses for the “woh woh woh” thing happening and I got the lil lick in the prechorus breakdown. Mighty to Save just cries out for 3 guitars! Acoustic, the lil chimey thing, and the wah. I got the wah.

So thick weekend especially because we also had drums and percussion! Besides the fact that they were brothers and the percussionist knew how to be a percussionist with a drummer! Oh man, nothing worse than a percussionist who doesn’t know how to percussion with a drummer 😦

AND worship happened! Kevin does a great job of leading people to worship and even getting off the mic to let them sing. It was a good morning. Thank you Lord for letting me be a part of it.

This coming week, I’m in the driver’s seat! So, Sunday Setlist will be back again! Make sure you check out everyone’s mornings with Fred‘s incredible carnival at Sunday Setlists each and every week though!


Sunday Setlist May 17th – FINAL Video


[RSS Readers there’s a video below]

So this week finished our Volunteer Recruitment push with the last Real Men of Jesus video. I’ve got to say, I LOVE CREATING VIDEOS but man I feel like I’ve beaten a dead horse! I’m so glad I’m done with these. So much for for a minute long video 🙂

I’m terribly conflicted about this video because I didn’t get enough footage for what I needed and had to go to some stock photography as well as my narrator spoke too slow and had to do some tweaking of his vocals. I think in the end it came out just fine for those enjoying the show:

This week we sang:

  • Great is He Who’s the King of Kings – ?
  • Awesome is the Lord Most High – Tomlin
  • O Worship the King – Tomlinish
  • I Will Lift Your Name – ?
  • Sermon
  • Forever – Tomlin

This week was interesting because while we did a lot of Tomlin songs and we had 2 electric guitars, we didn’t feel very Tomlinish. I’m very glad our Mandolin player got a acoustic/electric mandolin with a pick up in it because we can now here what he’s playing and it makes great use of turnarounds.

I did announcements again this week and MAN THAT’S TOUGH! Ugh. I have tremendous respect for everyone giving announcements at their churches! Kudos!

All a part of Fred’s Sunday Setlist Blog carnival!


Sunday Setlist May 10th – Mothers and Graduates


[RSS Readers Video Below!]

How do you celebrate Mother’s Day and Graduates?
We recognize them all on the same day and create mass teary eyed-ness 🙂

I made a Senior Graduation Video Montage and am pretty stoked about it! I think it’s the best one I’ve ever done, which really isn’t saying much because I haven’t done too many but I’m really proud of the whole feel of this video. I spent a TON of time on it and I’m glad I found the perfect soundtrack (I think) from Addison Road! Love them and got to meet them a while back. Check it out:

I learned some tricks of the trade during the picture/video editing that I’m working up to share with you later today.

We sang:

  • Famous One – Chris Tomlin
  • Salvation – Charlie Hall
  • My Hope is You – Third Day
  • Offering
  • Sermon
  • Indescribable – Tomlin
  • Holy, Holy, Holy – Public Domain? Is that how you say that?

How was your Mother’s Day? Senior Graduation recognition day?

All a part of the blog carnival happening at Fred’s Sunday Setlists!


Sunday Setlist May 3rd – KidStuf & Video 3

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[RSS Feeders there’s a video embeded]

So the first Sunday of the month is always River KidStuf! Yay!! So we cut the services back by fifteen minutes and insert our Family Focuses Worship environment taken from NPCC’s KidStuf in the middle of them.

So here’s worship for the adults:

  1. Prelude/Gathering Song – Holy is the Lord – Tomlin
  2. Announcements
  3. I will Worship – yeah you know the song but I don’t know who it’s by
  4. We Will Dance – David Ruis
  5. Offering – Psalm 73
  6. Sermon
  7. Communion – I will lift Your name
  8. Closing – Blessed be Your name – Redman

Here’s the River KidStuf worship songs:

  1. Get this party started – Big Stuf
  2. Get it started – Hillsong Kids
  3. My Number One – Hillsong Kids

I love KidStuf days, they are crazy go nuts but wicked awesome! Pics hopefully coming your way soon.

And here’s my killer 3rd video. We figured that since we’ve done 2 already that people figured they’d know what to expect so I went a little kooky:

As always, incredible fun being part of Fred’s Blog Carnival!


Sunday Setlist April 26th – Strides & Video 2

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[RSS Readers Video Embed Below]

I think we might have hit a stride in what our worship is becoming at our church this past week.

  1. OpenerYour Grace is Enough – E – Matt Maher
  2. Creation’s King – E – Paul Baloche
  3. All Creature’s of Our God and King – A
  4. Bless the Lord – E – Laura Story
  5. OfferingI Will Lift Your Name – E
  6. Your Love oh Lord – G – Third Day

So we had some familiar oldie goodies (Your Grace is Enough & Your Love oh Lord) mixed with some newbies (Creation’s King, Bless the Lord, & I Will Lift Your Name) mixed with an oldie revamped newbie gone oldie again (All Creatures.) Overall, we had a good blend of rock with the folk with the mandolin and electric guitar mix that we had going on this week. It’s still just silly to me to have a mandolin take a solo on songs like Your Grace is Enough and Your Love oh Lord. It doesn’t actually provide any lift to the section of the song and it’s just squashed in a song that moving. With some attention to arrangement we could have a really cool sounding folk/acoustic worship team that could be really flexible! I’m excited about the possibilities!

This week also featured the 2nd video in our volunteer campaign and our 1st Real Woman of Jesus, Mrs. Warm and Friendly Sunday Morning Greeter:

As always, it’s an incredible honor and pleasure to be a part of Fred’s blog carnival of Sunday Setlists! Are you?


Sunday Setlist April 19th – Bluegrass and My Video!

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[RSS Readers Video Embeded Below]

I know you want to talk about the music but I want to talk about my video! Hahaha.
This week we were supposed to have another Bluegrass Sunday, we do those from time to time, but we didnt have any banjo 😦 So it was still different but more folksy acoustic different than Bluegrass different. It’s still fun though seeing how white our congregation is and apparently NOT country. It’s my understanding that you clap on the upbeat or ‘and’ of the beat with the snare hit but instead we jumped on the downbeat with the kick drum hit and it was just ridiculous. But in a good way, haha!

  1. I Saw the Light
  2. Lord Most High
  3. Come Thou Fount
  4. I’ve Got a River of Life
  5. Offering – Jesus, Help me to Stand
  6. Communion – Amazing Grace/ Blessed Assurance
  7. O Love that Will Not Let Me Go

Instrumentation this week was: Acoustic, Dobro, Mandolin, Acoustic & Harmonica, Fiddle, & Drums.

So what do you do in your church to change things up a bit?!?!

NOW we also started a new volunteer recruitment series called Real Men of Jesus or Real Women of Jesus depending on the week. It’s a bit dated I know but it was terribly fun to do! And this year that’s what we wanted to do. Highlight some real and not so real jobs in the church that volunteers do in a real fun, real quick way and then have someone live talk about it. This week’s kicked off the series and you can see we went with a real SERIOUS overtone.

It might not be as funny to you unless you know that we have these 2 geese that truly do plague our church, that the staff makes up the band, and that’s one of our elders decked out!

I hope you’re participating in Fred’s blog carnival of Sunday Setlists!


2009 Most Played Easter Songs

Fred McKinnon has a killer thing happening every Sunday called Sunday Setlists. If you blog and go to church you should get involved. I don’t have any evidence from last year but this year looks like a pretty modern list of new and current songs!

Out of the 49 churches represented, I give you the Most Played Easter Songs for this year according to Sunday Setlists:

  1. Mighty to Save – Hillsong – 16 churches
  2. Happy Day – Tim Hughes – 10 churches
  3. Christ the Lord is Risen Today – 9 churches
  4. Jesus Messiah – Chris Tomlin – 8
  5. Jesus Paid it All – Kristian Stanfill – 8
  6. In Christ Alone – Stuart Townsend? Matt Papa? Traditional? – 7
  7. My Redeemer Lives – Hillsong – 7
  8. How Great is Our God – Tomlin – 6
  9. All Because of Jesus – Steve Fee – 5
  10. I Will Rise – Tomlin – 4

There were some INCREDIBLE sets out there. My favorite was one that included Foo Fighter’s My Hero for their offering (ugh…they are my hero!) followed closely with the church that did U2’s Pride (in the Name of Love) for their prelude! Some real traditional sets. Sets with choirs, full bands, the whole mix. What I didn’t pay attention to were the arrangements and that’s a bid deal for songs like Jesus Paid it All and In Christ Alone that have been revamped but…oh well.

Chris Tomlin holds the ground it appears as the most popular artist in church today 🙂 But I was stoked to see All Because of Jesus up there!

Honorable mentions go out to: Phil Wickham’s True Love, The Wonderful Cross, Crowder’s Here is our King, and Hillsong’s Lead Me to the Cross.

So, did I miss you? List your songs below or head over to Fred’s Blog Carnival for Sunday Setlists!


Sunday Setlist March 29 – I’m baaaaaack


Today was my first time back up front leading worship in a loooooong time. I know it’s the first time this year! And it was GREAT!

1st: The songs –

All to You – Lincoln Brewster – E
Wholly Yours – David Crowder*Band – G
I Will Not Forget You – ??? – G
Hosanna – Hillsong United – E

Offering – You’re Beautiful – Phil Wickham – Eb

Closing – Oh, Praise Him – Crowder – G

2nd: The team –

3 female backup vox
1 male backup vox
3 guitars: 1 acoustic + 1 electric + me on my Gretsch

Put those together and what have you got? Bippity Boppity BIGNESS! Oh man, it was FULL! I mean, I don’t typically like alot of backup vocals. I think harmonies can get in the way sometimes but since it was my first time back in a loooong time, I put a call in to some dear friends of mine who used to fill in for me when I led worship and would be out of town. Well this time we could do it together! They’re a husband and wife team with a best friend and they just work incredibly well together. I added a student of mine who loves to sing and so the vocals were STACKED. We had fun trading off lead parts as well which was great for me.

I led All to You and Wholly Yours completely by myself.
I split verses with Matt on I will Not Forget You and Oh, Praise Him.
Matt led You’re Beautiful.
Alyssa led Hosanna.

Another BIGNESS came from 3 guitars! Seriously, there’s no other way to go! Matt led rhythmically on his acoustic, Jim did lead on the electric, and I filled in the between on my Gretsch. It was so much fun for me because I didn’t have to do alot honestly 🙂 I got to play simple clean stuff or with mild distortion to build some bigness. It really showed though. I’ve played Oh, Praise Him easily 1,000 times but this was the best time ever!

We pushed 95/96 which also a great way to fill the room. We kind of had to with the intensity of the songs!

Such a great morning all around! Praise God from whom all blessings flow!

How was your Sunday? Have you participated in Fred’s Sunday Setlist? You should!


Sunday Setlist March 15 – Variety Show


I love the zoo. Various animals from various continents of various shapes and sizes all available for me to spend the afternoon walking around to view in 1 place. However, if they were physically all in the same space you might have some confusion, bewilderment, chaos, and the tigers would be devouring a small antelope in front of your 3 year old!

We had variety this week! Which for creativity’s sake was phenomenal! Although I remember every time I walked into the sanctuary I went “Whoosy whatsy?”

Prelude – Come Thou Fount
Announcments & Greeting
Creation’s King
Great is He Who’s the King of Kings
The Lord is Gracious and Compassionate
Come Thou Fount
Offering – Jesus, Lover of my Soul
Communion – Bluegrass instrumental
Closing – Here I am to Worship

It wasn’t so much the music choice for this weekend that’s worth talking about so much as the variety that was so thought out to make this Sunday a very diverse one.

  1. The Choir – This week we had a mini-choir of about 5 ladies singing harmony with our Associate Pastor as the male part harmony. They were particularly showcased on Great is He… which was a new song however each part was taught to the congregation before the song began. It took some time but in the end it ‘worked.’ It’s not something I enjoyed b/c well I’m not too keen on choirs and then the time allotted to teach the song was a pretty big flow killer. That being said, it did get at least the guys and girls singing different parts. They were also showcased on the special for the Offering on Jesus, Lover of my Soul.
  2. Bluegrass – I’ve done a Bluegrass Sunday before and we’ve had acoustic Sundays with a more country folk sound but never just a good ole’ folksy bluegrassy tune smack dab in the middle of the service. It was particularly interesting for communion.
  3. Auxiliary instruments – Not only did we have an additional acoustic/electric guitar but we had a banjo and a saxophone. Therefore this week even the “normal” songs were not “normal” sounding songs. However it was Jesus, Lover of my Soul with the saxophone that was truly the addition of variety for the morning. Choir + Sax = !?!?!

I would have imagined my borderline ADD would have been all over this morning but something felt more confusing than pleasing. I recognize that’s just personal style preference. For marks on creativity and thinking outside the box: A for effort! I always wonder though how do you decide what’s appropriate or ‘what’s us?’ The human side of worship planning is so dang difficult!

But it is great to be a part of Fred’s Sunday Setlist Blog Carnival!

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