Hi All, dors anyone use a nylon strung guitar in worship leading? If so do you use any effects? I play Lead/melody lines mainly and wondering how you cope with the mix of other intruments.

To be heard in the mix you must have a good and sympathetic engineer mixer I understand this.

I have electric guitars aswell so no problem there, but sometimes the mood and leading of the Holy Spirit calls for a more mellow sound and I feel the nylon strung instrument lends well to this.

I have used it in a solo or duo setting, but not in a full worship group setting, any advice greatfully received.


Yours in Christ, Roger.

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Hi Roger, I am not a worship leader but part of the music ministry, and have been playing in secular settings for well over 25 years (most styles). I guess there are two matters at hand here: you leading the worship and you playing an instrument.


As a thought: the fact that you are leading thew worship does not necessarily mean that your instrument is the leading instrument in a full setting. I use the nylon stringed guitar more and more (admittedly in a charismatic church Holy Spirit time and soaking type of time, but also prayer time). I personally do not use any effects but I use an acoustic guitar amplifier with a tiny bit of reverb and the sound man does the rest as called for and fitting. The good thing about it all (as opposed to straight into the di is that you have more control on "stage", the disadvantage is clear when your worship team is playing loud. Very often I play (tremolo picking) lines that harmonize with the singing of the congregation and so far I have had good responses. The key is, I think in a full worship setting that there is already so much happening that you can let the instrument take on a more serving role (lead by melody lines/harmony lines) that complement the singing of the people and dare to let go of the leading by instrument and lead differently.F.i let the piano be the leading instrument, while you lead with melody lines and nodding your head or whatever works for you. 


What I have found is that there have been moments we thought were going to be really quiet where the everyone started singing out loud because the followed the melody line (the original one they already sung) when I played it on guitar but they would sing with a different dynamic. Another option is to play chord-melody and let the people follow in the worship, if you do that on a nylon string guitar, the songs may well get a new dimension, and intimacy. 


Love and blessings, 



Hi John, thanks for the reply, I agree entirely with your statements, the point about chord melody appeals to me as I like jazz standards to listen to in my private listening.


God bless, Roger

Hi Roger


I use my classical guitar about four times per year.  The one I use in this situation has a piezo pickup in it, so I plug in and am able to get plenty of volume out of it if need be. Even then, it doesn't cut through the mix well and requires that we arrange the band around it instead of the other way around. I have the drums play a quiet line and the piano almost not at all. I usually start the song off with the classical too. Alternately, it can be the lead line as you imply. But you still need to make sure the band is mixed properly for this to work. It's mostly a mix issue if you're playing classical...


Cheers mate!

Hi Stevo, thanks for that, yes it is always the mix, this is where a blessed and experienced engineer/ pa person is needed.

My preference is to have an amp on the platform and to mike that up but some people don't like that setup.


God bless, Roger

I'm with you on the amp.
There is always the combination of amp with mic/di AND direct into di. We do that for bass as well, works perfect.
Some schools of thought feel that a mic'd amp sounds more natural. In my case, I don't have a good acoustic amp, so I mic the guitar as often as I plug it in. One of my good friends said it sounds great that way.


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