Updated: Dec 24, 2019
How You Got Here
So you've played guitar for a while, and you know your way around the fretboard. Maybe you've even played in a few rock bands, so you know what kind of gear it takes. People know you play guitar.
After attending your local church a few times you find yourself being recruited by a Praise & Worship Team. They need an electric guitar player, and word around town is "You are the guy to go to." So you give in. After all you love playing anytime, anywhere.
Later in the week, you find yourself at Worship Team Practice with all your gear in tow. A half stack, 4 guitars, 2 pedalboards, and all of your miscallaneous accessories. Pretty standard rig........for a rock guitarist.
Pretty soon you are blowing the teams' hair back with your half stack on this otherwise quiet or silent stage. The sound guy is losing his cool, and you have no idea why.
If this is you, do not fret. I get it. Five years ago, this was what I encountered. Its normal. It won't be long, perhaps its even now, that you are realizing..... you just discovered a whole new genre of guitar playing.
Here's whats up. Praise & Worship Guitar fills in the guitar shaped space in a team, but it has different needs, different goals, different gear, and most importantly different tone. Lets talk about Praise & Worship Guitar Tone as it will encompass most of what you need to know. The big picture.
Praise & Worship Guitar has different needs, different goals, different gear, and most importantly different tone. Lets talk about Praise & Worship Guitar Tone as it will encompass most of what you need to know. The big picture.
What is Guitar Tone?
Guitar Tone is a term guitar players use to describe the overall sound produced by a player's choice of guitar, gear, and playing style. It is the depth, character, texture, and emotional feeling encompassed in your sound. Tone is not accidental. It is something you learn to sculpt and refine as you mature as a guitarist. Tone is everything in Worship Guitar.
It is VITAL.
So, how can you achieve it?
Its starts with training your ear. Its time to pay very close attention to the sound you are producing. Playing lead guitar for a Worship Team won't be as technically demanding as you are likely accustom to. Most of the music you'll cover is written with the goal for easy replication, and freedom to focus on being in the moment.
This gives you the freedom to sculpt your tone, and build out the guitar parts as much as you want to. You are helping to create an atmosphere for Worship, and your tone needs to reflect that. Trust me, this is going to be one of your favorite experiences as a guitar player. You'll look back fondly on the time you take to develop your tone.
If you feel overwhelmed, don't be. Its good that you are taking the time to do this properly. In the next part we will go over the specific gear you'll want to consider, and talk about the iconic guitarists that unintentionally influenced the entire genre. Make sure to check out the next part. We'll get into the nitty gritty of building your guitar rig.
The Axe Dr.