Band Lessons

655075_356×237.jpg I didn’t grow up thinking that I wanted to be a pastor some day. In fact, my wife would say I haven’t grown up at all but I’ve still managed to become a pastor. Once I stumbled onto that road I did quite a few things to prepare for ministry but nothing really prepared me for leading a church like the few years I spent as a leader of a band.

The lessons I learned from the band have stuck with me and formed my view of leadership and how to get the best from the people God brings around me.

In the next few posts I’ll share some of my “Band Lessons” and I’d love to hear some of yours as well:

As the Partridge family once sang, “Something always happens whenever we’re together…” and Three Dog Night was right that “one is the loneliest number.” Each person in the band/team/staff is vital and while I might not notice how they’re doing if it’s going well, if someone gets out of tune, plays a different rhythm or overplays then we all notice. Everyone notices. Each part needs to be honored, resourced and on the same page musically and relationally. The lead singer is only as good as the rest of the band makes them look. And the sound guy at the back may not get many applause but he can turn up the “suck button” and make the band sound terrible any time he wants.

Being a leader is more about helping each person in the band excel in their area of influence and making room for everyone to add their bit. Musicians are like everyone else, they know when they are valued and when their just playing role anyone could fill, like the drummer for “Spinal Tap”. Collectively we are greater than we are on our own. When I played on my own it would easily resemble a single vehicle accident but when we played together we could support each other, inspire each other, cover for each other and fill the gaps.


About brianmpei

Stumbling towards what comes next.
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2 Responses to Band Lessons

  1. J. Bryce says:

    I once played on a worship team that had a killer red-headed bass guitar player. His head and hips moved more than his fingers on the frets, but I concur, he played an important part. Does he still play?

  2. brianmpei says:

    Oh, he still plays, whether he’s in the band ‘officially’ or just down on the third row wailing, and I MEAN wailing, on his air guitar!

    Great story here. A couple months ago now I had him play electric with Bob. During rehearsal I kept chanting, ‘less is more, less is more’. He assured me that he understood. About the second song in during the live set I notice serious movement out of the corner of my eye and realize he’s doing the ‘walk to the front of the stage’ move. He gets up front, past Bob, puts his foot up on the monitor and just busts a groove. I was stuck, unable to decide whether to choke him or laugh out loud.

    Miss ya man!

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