I fought it for a long time but finally caved. I am now a proud user of the click-track when I lead. The first few weeks were tough and brought back some painful memories of sheet music, scales and a metronome when I was 10. However, I settled in, and after a month, there was no going back.
The main reason for holding out, despite all the encouragement and recommendations from other leaders, was the fear that it might be a hindrance to the Spirit’s leading and a distraction to my personal worship. Oh, was I wrong. Here are a couple of the benefits the click has given my ministry.
1. Less To Think About. I never realized it, but I always overplay in effort to keep time. This usually resulted in rushing when leading from guitar and dragging on the keys. Between each song I would always have to think about tempo and attempt to re-calibrate. Consequently, the speed of the previous song would influence the next. Now there’s no question, the tempo is right on, and I’m locked in from the start. The net result is increased mind-share to focus on engaging the church in worship.
2. A Tighter Band. We all fought it at some stage of the process. But one-by-one each band member said to me, “We’re so much tighter with the click.” The definitive tempo set by the click got the timing out of our heads and into the mix resulting in the alignment of all our riffs, licks, fills and builds.
Ways to Run It
1. A Metronome. This is by far the simplest way to run a click-track. My favorite solution is the Tempo Advance Metronome@ app available for iPhone and iPod Touch.
2. Tracks. This takes a little more work as you’ll need to create or acquire an actual audio track with the click on it. But when your ready to jump into the world of loops and backing tracks, you’ll be able to integrate them seamlessly. My go-to solution for driving audio tracks is an app for the iPad called SoundCue.
Tips for Using the Click-Track
1. Let the drummer drive it.
2. Encourage the band to have it in their mix.
3. Practice With It.