- Sensitive to the Holy Spirit
- A firm understanding of the 100% rule
- Playing in time with the drummer and practicing with a metronome or drum machine is essential.
- Attentive to song leader during praise
- Understanding the relationship between volume and dynamics is very important.
- Percussion is a “frosting instrument”*
Let’s look at some ideas about percussion that will help us make a better platform for worship.
1. The worship leader at Ridgepoint told me the most important thing about percussion is to find a person who doesn’t have to make some kind of noise all the time. It is better to fill a whole with percussion, than to spread it on top of what’s already there. The other musicians need to leave a whole for this to work.
2. Percussion is an extension of the drums and therefore needs to fit well with what the drummer is doing; Either by complementing (finding your own part) or by echoing, or by playing something at the exact time.
3. The timing of the drummer and percussionist need to be better if they are going to play together, than if one were missing.
4. There needs to be a lot of open communication between the drummer and percussionist with decisions being made about who plays what, and when.
5. Without sounding too charismatic, percussion is one of the few instruments that can, if played well, really engender an attitude of worship. Shaking things, and swelling cymbals can add a lot of emotion to music; and congas are just fun!
*A meal has meat and potatoes. A really good meal also has dessert. The dessert isn’t really part of the food, it is for taste and pleasure. A frosting instrument is one that could be eliminated without the song falling apart, but the addition heightens the experience.