I like Acoustic, but one thing I will say about acoustic is it shows all your flaws a lot more... whether they be vocal, or instrumental, or both. A full band adds a lot of support that I like. However, I find that as long as I know we're doing acoustic in advance (i.e. drummer and lead guitarist let me know they're not coming that Sunday before practice) than I can prep the band for an acoustic setting. Sunday Surprises where we practice with a full band, and than the lead guitarist or drummer doesn't show up.... than I get irritated lol
For me it depends on the size of the congregation and the type of service. We have a Sat. evening service with about 30 members. I like acoustic for this most times. It is not overpowering and more personal. Our Sunday morning service is usually around 200 and I like a full band for this service.
Mix it up. We sang Draw Me Close To You this morning, and started off with the full band, but ended almost accapella with just the accoustic guitar.
I prefer a full band, but like to use it dynamically. Sometimes we rock, other times we play light. In a small group (say a congregational meeting), I prefer just myself and my guitar. It really depends on the setting.
What I've enjoyed the most is the occasions when due to availability it was a singer or 2, acoustic guitar, keyboard, and myself on sax/d'jembe/shakers/chimes/etc. depending on the situation and song. The worship music has a lot of 'air' with this setup compared to a full band and the response has been great. I also personally enjoy the freedom given to play the sax in just a few songs but with a greater role in those songs. It's kind of like the christmas song "Little Drummer Boy". The only gift I have is my joy in playing my best to the Lord.
Interesting topic. I do find it neat that often rocking bands like Aerosmith finally get a #1 song as rock ballad. Guns & Roses, their best songs seems to ballads too, like November Rain. It's amazing that bands like U2 can get huge band sound out of 4 guys or even the White Stripes or Savage Garden can do with 2 people.
I have to stay one of the most moving worship experiences was at a Worship Together conference about 10 years. They had a huge band, with the likes of Matt Redman, Paul Oakley and Stuard Townsend on stage (and I think they had the Stoneleigh/Phatfish band and bunch of other Worship Together label artist too.) It was a huge sound that filled a University Gymnasium.
It was as if the sound was just loud enough to not be able to hear yourself sing, but not painful. I looked around and everyone, literally everyone was singing pouring out their heart to God. It was like suddenly everything was uninhibited. I do distinctly remember jumping around and singing "undignified" in the bleacher section so we had more room, led by Matt Redman himself and thinking, "Wow this is really appropriate...".
Not sure if that was volume. Not sure if the was 15+ piece band laying down a Phil Spector type of "wall of sound". I found it was a very special moment in my life. Not about to say it was Tom Tenney/God Chaser moment, but it was great.
So I guess my vote is for heart pumping, full band, all-out sound. =) With quiet moments mixed in, of course, but I'm a big fan of those 'celebration songs' as my pastor like to say. That's what I love about corporate worship.
(Maybe I'm biased. If I need that small, quiet reflective worship, I'll just pull out my guitar and play and singing myself, locked in a room. What I look forward to on Sundays is the corporate 'army for Christ' feeling. It definitely gets me out of bed on Sundays, not waiting to be late for the 1st worship set.)
I'm a acoustic kinda guy. I prefer strapping on a guitar and singing my heart out to God in a small-mid group setting.
Recently I've been moved out of my comfort zone. I've been playing for my church services for weeks and using keyboards instead of the guitar. I must admit, playing keyboards as part of a full band is always loads of fun, though I did ask to have a cowbell next to my keyboard the most recent Sunday. I thought it would be fun to do piano and cowbell at the same time (like patting my head and rubbing my tummy), but I guess the rest didn't think so! :D
There is no doubt that there are times to rock it out and sing songs of praise, declaration, etc....with that being said if you have had any part in praise/worship whether it is singing, playing or leading, i think you would agree that it is those intimate times that prepares our hearts for what the Lord is trying to say us especially if there is anything that has potential in separating us from his presence. ( Least that has been my experience )
Lets keep on being sensitive to his spirit in that we continue to sing, write and play songs that glorify and lift up the name of Jesus. God Bless
I prefer the full band with a drummer who really understands the dynamics of worship music. I can coach a bass and electric guitarists about that but not drummers for some reason. My congregation is most comfortable and responsive when I go back to the acoustic and djembe. That is all we had for the first year I was at the church so it is a comfort level thing. We also have a big variety of church worship backgrounds in the congregation so this creates a fun but challenging environment.
I am a rocker though and love to go at it hard but have not the opportunity to do that because our job is to lead the congregation in worship and my congregation would not respond and be lead to God through this so I keep this for personal and band jam out times.
Yea, I love the closness and intimacy of an acoustic worship setting. It is absolutely my favorite. I know though that many people like to have rather a full band, upbeat and animating style of worship and that is fun too. But my heart is definitely the very personal time in acoustic worship where it is for me more about where the HG leads you and meeting our loving Jesus. Than it is all about HIM and the reason I worship is drawing near to HIM.
I'm a very energetic, sometimes crazy and hyper, worshipper, and I LOVE having a fast driving beat with a full band, but it's really hard to beat the pure beauty of an acoustic song without the electric guitars. Sometimes I find that less is much more because when you slowly take out the instruments one at a time, you begin to drawer nearer and nearer to God without distraction, and it's in that moment that you just cry out to Jesus and proclaim His majesty. And of course, there are the powerful rock songs that make me want to jump, laugh, shout, and totally lose it for Jesus! I like variety, and I love to be really heavy on dynamic build-up and falling.
I must say that I would have to agree with you Josh. Although there is totally different element/dynamic felt with a full worship band, nothing in my mind beats acoustic worship. Sometimes, even just a capella is my favourite. Stripping the instruments and showiness away and just raising voices to our Saviour. Love it.