Friday Funny: How to Write a Worship Song (In Five Minutes or Less)

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This kid is every youth minister’s nightmare (but in a good way). Here he is ripping on the repetitive and derivative nature of modern worship music. It’s not a bad critique, as long as we remember that a similar critique can be made of most music in the pop/rock genre. It reminds me of my all-time favorite ironic liner note comment, made by Ben Folds in the liner note of his album titled (ironically), “Whatever and Ever Amen.”

“This recording was made with the utmost care and professionalism. Microphones were chosen and placed in the general vicinity of each instrument in order to capture the sonic characteristics of the music performed. Each instrument was tuned before and often during the recording sessions and arrangements were rehearsed or at least discussed.

The lyrics or text were created to detract from the repetition inherent in modern instrumental pop music. Iambic pentameter was not always an option, however, when possible, the last syllable of a line was manipulated in order to rhyme with the last syllable of the preceding line. Where this technique has served to distort the meaning of the original text, the fuzz tone of the electric bass guitar or a virtuosic drum fill has been inserted to distract the listener temporarily from the actual song.

Finally, the best takes were chosen and the others were culled and thrown away or erased, otherwise this record could have easily been hundreds of hours long; much longer than the generally accepted running time of a modern commercial recording. Every measure was taken to keep this record mistake free. The mixing engineer, Andy Wallace, who has mixed many top notch famous recording stars, often took the initiative and muted or “ducked” missed notes and unsavory textures.”

If you want to buy some of my own recordings of repetitive worship music, you can grab the latest album here.

If you would like to buy some of my pop/rock music in which fuzz tones & drum fills were inserted to distract the listener from the actual song, here’s one I actually like.

Or you could just sample 30 seconds of a song or two, look to see that they are not, in fact, posted on youtube so you can listen to the whole song without purchasing it, and then move on to whatever’s next. Either way, I hope the video gives you at least a little Funny for your Friday!

Have a great weekend everyone!

About Tim Suttle

Tim Suttle is a pastor, writer, and musician. He is the author of two books: Public Jesus (The House Studio, 2012), and An Evangelical Social Gospel? (Cascade Books, 2011). Tim's work has been featured at The Huffington Post, The Washington Post, Sojourners, The Wall Street Journal, and other magazines and journals. Tim is also the founder and front-man of the popular Christian band Satellite Soul, with whom he toured for nearly a decade. He has planted three successful churches over the past 12 years and is the Senior Pastor of Redemption Church in Olathe, Kan. Tim's blog, Paperback Theology, is hosted at Patheos.