Wednesday, January 30, 2008

A Tribute to Saturday

Here's a little excerpt from last night's Inchoirer.

A “Saturday” Quiz

Can you name the artist(s) that performed these “Saturday” lines?

A. “Saturday began just the same as other days, but ended up different in many way, love is in the air since Saturday.”

B. “Saturday, in the park, I think it was the 4th of July”

C. "S.A.T.U.R.D.A.Y. night S.A.T.U.R.D.A.Y.

I gotta get out of these overalls

They're throwin' a dance at the union hall"

We’ll be singing our own songs this Saturday at 9:00. We’ll get a big jump on memorizing Bow the Knee. If you need childcare for Saturday and haven’t already let Donna know, be sure and let us know tonight!

OK, here are the answers to the quiz. Can you match them up?

How to Memorize Anything

I ran across several web sites that claim to help you memorize anything.

I found fancy diagrams of the brain and detailed information about synapses a snappin' and nervous nerves and things I don't remember...

But I've found the best way to memorize music is to sing it. Singing by yourself in your car with a CD is pretty good, but the best way is to be in choir singing with your friends.

So... let me encourage you to be in choir tonight. We still have a few weeks to memorize the music and then we'll get out on the stage and sing.

Monday, January 28, 2008

What Not to Wear

It's time to talk about costuming for the Passion Play - Bow the Knee.
As you've heard, but in case it hasn't sunk in, everyone in the choir will need to be in costume for the Passion Play. I have this recurring nightmare... The overture is just coming to an end, the curtain slowly rises and there...
on stage...
the entire choir...
is wearing tacky bathrobes!

I noticed this morning on the news, as they were doing a report on the war in Afghanistan, that most of the pictures from that part of the world seem to be filmed in dusty beige. So to be true to the area and the time, most of the costumes need to be in assorted camel, goat and sheep colors.

So what not to wear? bathrobes, bright colors, spandex, double knit, polyester.......

I need to know - we'll send around a paper Wednesday - if you already have a costume, if you can make one for yourself (There are many easy patterns in all of the pattern books at all the fabric places.) or if you need us to help you with a costume.

2.4 Million Dollars!

Wow! An ad during the Super Bowl is going for $2.4 million for a thirty second ad! And to think, I would let Pepsi advertise here for a tenth of that!

Speaking of the Super Bowl, we won't have an evening service this Sunday night, but we will have a great afternoon concert. No Other Name will be here. They will sing several songs Sunday morning in our morning services and then present a concert that afternoon at 3:00.

Here are a few qoutes about No Other Name .

"Ministering together for over 10 years, No Other Name brings a creative, interesting and powerful presentation of songs full of truth and meaning. Featuring thoughtful and scripturally based lyrics with a tight harmony, they have ministered in churches all over the nation. From the Gaither Homecoming stage to the local church, No Other Name's message is evident - it's all about Christ and what He did on the cross."

No Other Name with Bill Gaither

"I love everything about No Other Name -- their tight harmonies, total honesty and great sense of humor. But the thing that stands out the most about them is their clear focus on the gospel. -- Stacy Beam, Singer/songwriter, Nashville, Tenn."

You can see more pics, read more reviews and hear some of their music at their web site

Saturday, January 26, 2008

The Basics of Life

Sunday's Anthem - The Basics of Life
We'll use our books.

The basics of life should probably include the basic food groups.
Hope you're having a great Saturday!
See you in the morning!

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Congratulations - New Choir Officers

Here's a great picture of choir officers from the 1921 Pine Needle, the Annual of the North Carolina Women's College in Greensboro, NC.
Perhaps we can make a similar photo to display our new officers.
In the mean time, I'll just list them here. Congratulations to each of our new officers. I'm looking forward to a great year in choir.
President - Barbara Goolsby
V.P. - Mark Black
Secretary/Treasurer - Stacy Risinger
Decorating/Social Coordinator - Ramona Ambrose
Librarian/Robe Czar - Debbie DiFiore
Section Leaders
Soprano - Jan Fox
Alto - Kristi Huang
Tenor - Marc Harris
Bass - Larry Nicholson

Return of the Sopranos

Why do I say, "return of the sopranos?"

Because there have been Wednesdays in the past where we had 10 sopranos and 30 altos. Last night we had 27 sopranos, 27 altos, 13 tenors and 10 basses. WOW! For a total of 77 in choir. Thanks to everyone who was there!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008


PPCD - Passion Play Count Down - continues tonight as we move to 8 weeks before the Passion Play. So I know you'll all want to be in rehearsal tonight. The music is relatively easy to learn and it's all beautiful! We've added one more song - Remember Me. You probably have heard it before. Adding this song will let us add a "Last Supper" scene.

The Last Supper by Jacopo Bassano

I had asked some music minister friends of mine for suggestions and I really liked the one titled If You Want in the Picture Get on This Side of the Table. But I couldn't find the music to it.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Shout to the Lord

Ps 95:1 - Show Context
O come, let us sing for joy to the LORD, Let us shout joyfully to the rock of our salvation.
Ps 98:4 - Show Context
Shout joyfully to the LORD, all the earth; Break forth and sing for joy and sing praises.

Wind and Fire - our instrumental ensemble - will be playing the offertory this coming Sunday, January 27th. They really sound great. So this post is to remind them to be in rehearsal this Wednesday night at 5:30 in the Sanctuary.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Brrrrrrr! How to be warm in cold weather.

One of the little waterfalls in my creek behind my house.

It's cold on Bear Hollow! I wish you could see my creek in person. It is so beautiful.

It was cold Sunday morning too, but we had over 1,000 people in worship. Even when it is cold outside the warmth of family and friends meeting together to sing praises to our God and Savior makes it worth getting out in the cold.

And the music was hot Sunday! I mean that in a good way. I have had many people tell me how much they enjoyed the service Sunday. I have to spread the warm feeling around because the reason it was so good was because we have a great band (Michelle, Ryan, Tommy, Tommy, Greg, Mike, Debbie and Gena were on this week) a great sound and tech crew, (can't happen without them) so a big thanks to Scott, Tony, Chuck, Austin, Perry, Kevin, Linda and all the camera men.

Can you see the water running under the ice? So gorgeous!

Well... there you have it. A great way to warm up on a cold day is to spend time with your church family worshipping together. My second choice would be big bon fire with s'mores! But that's another post.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Newsboys - He Reigns

Sunday's Anthem - He Reigns!
Youth and Children who know the song can join us. They'll have to meet us back in the choir room. Spread the word. See you Sunday!

Hallelujah! He reigns!

Wednesday, January 16, 2008


I guess the first thing that pops into most heads when they hear the word "apologetics" is how they would love for their spouse to use apologetics when they forget to take out the trash or when they say something tacky about their mother-in-law.

But actually, that's not what apologetics is. Here's what Merriam-Webster says

"Main Entry:
1 : systematic argumentative discourse in defense (as of a doctrine)
2 : a branch of theology devoted to the defense of the divine origin and authority of Christianity"

Wait! Before you nod off or click onto the next site, here's why I mention this. I just started reading a good book on apologetics. (stay with me!) The nice thing about it is that you don't have to be a theologian to understand it!

I've never been a fan of those books "herding cats for dummies" or "brushing your dogs teeth for dummies" or any of those "for dummies" books. I think the title is rather insulting! But this book is written in a very easy to read format (and has a lot of pictures) and has some wonderful information in it.

The book is titled Holman QuickSource guide to Christan Apologetics.

Have you ever wanted to know why you believe what you believe? Have you ever talked to someone and they said, "well, that's OK for you to believe but I think something else" and your only defense was, "well, I know it's true because I feel so good about it." Not too helpful! This book gives you the REASONS why we believe what we believe.

Some of the things covered in the book:
  • Does God Exist? The Cosmological Argument
  • Does God Exist? The Moral Argument
  • Which God Exists? (there are several opinions, you know)
  • Where did the New Testament Come From?
  • Is the New Testament Reliable?
  • Is Jesus the Only Way?
and more...

The book is published by Holman Reference (a division of LifeWay Christian Resources) so I"m sure you can pick one up at the LifeWay store.

What does this have to do with music or worship?

Read a little of this book and then perhaps the next time we sing Because We Believe you'll sing with a new understanding. The Apostle Paul said it this way,

1Co 14:15 - Show Context
So what shall I do? I will pray with my spirit, but I will also pray with my mind; I will sing with my spirit, but I will also sing with my mind.
Get your mind involved in your faith! This book could be a good start.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Portuguese Irregular Verbs

I have been studying Portuguese since before my first (and only - so far) trip to Brazil a few years ago. The Tennessee Baptist Men's Chorale went there on a mission trip in 2004. I really enjoy the language and it gives my brain something new and interesting to work on. (brains will rot if you don't use them, you know) This August I will be leading a group from our church on an evangelism follow up mission trip to Rio de Janiero. (contact me or Bro. Paul if you want information on how you can join in on this trip)
In preparing for the trip, I have been listening to my Portuguese CDs (Pimsleur's Portuguese 3) and I just bought Rosetta Stone's Language study program (it's realllly cool) on Ebay and while I was searching on Ebay I saw a book - only $1.96 buy it now - called Portuguese Irregular Verbs. Portuguese has several Irregular verbs - and like English they are the really important verbs that you use all the time - to be, to have, to go, to hear. The book was listed next to several other books: 501 Portuguese Verbs and Portuguese Verbs and Grammar. Since it was less than $5 even including the shipping I bought it. (and of course was very proud of myself for getting such a good deal)
It came today.
It ends up that this book has nothing to do with Portuguese grammar. It's a short novel! I skimmed through it. It seems the story is about a company that printed way too many copies of a book actually titled and about irregular Portuguese verbs,(hmmm, I can't imagine why there aren't thousands of people wanting a book like that) so they were going to try to change the cover of the book to say Portuguese Irrigated Herbs and put them on bookshelves in model homes to get rid of them...
Ha, ha, ha. Well, I guess the joke is on me for not researching a little more before I clicked "buy now". Anyone want to read a short novel before I try to resell it on Ebay or Amazon?

Sunday, January 13, 2008

AWANA Pastor Look-alike Night

Tonight was a fun night in AWANA - I suppose they all are, but this one was a lot of fun for me. It was Pastor Look-alike night. They could try to look like any of the pastors. There were a lot of children with beards and goatees. Some had white hair. I saw one or two in a Terry Brown style sweater. And I had several of the children look like me! I have a few pictures on my cell phone of me with some of the children, but I don't know how to get them off of my phone.

Fortunately Hayden's mom took a picture of me and Hayden. Isn't he adorable? (He's the one on the left.)

I didn't get a picture of all of the pastor look-alikes, but I did get these.

Friday, January 11, 2008

BTK Bonus Rehearsal - Feb. 2

Bro. Larry talked about the commercials that offer you something and then say, "But wait! There's more!" Well, I have exciting news for all of you who like those extra items. We're having an extra rehearsal for Bow the Knee! You love Wednesday nights, (we had 74 in rehearsal last week!) and it's always a joy to sing on Sunday mornings, but wait! There's more!
We're having an extra rehearsal - a bonus rehearsal - more rehearsal for your dollar - on Saturday, February 2. And... to make it even more appealing (and to keep from tying up your entire day) we're meeting at 9:00 (with coffee and donuts at 8:38). We'll end by 11:11. This will help us finish up learning Bow the Knee so we can start staging it the next Wednesday. We'll have a sign-up sheet for childcare for those families who need it.
Put Feb. 2 on your calendar and I'll see you then.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Sunday's Music (Jan. 13, 2008)

Wow! Already the second Sunday of '08! My how time flies... I remember everyone being in a huge panic about all the computers in the world stopping and planes crashing and great weeping and gnashing of teeth when we were going form the 1900's to the 2000's.

But I have distracted myself. Sunday's anthem - Reach the World. Here's a picture of the trio singing at Christmas.

Wind and Fire update

My original thoughts in naming this group had to do with the fact that most of the players play "wind" instruments and "wind and fire" represent the work of the Holy Spirit. It seemed like a cool, youthful name. and I suppose it is. However, I hear "Earth, Wind and Fire" a lot from people referring to this ensemble, so maybe it's too close to that.

What I want to tell you today is how GREAT they sounded last night. It was a lot of fun playing together. We had 2 flutes, 3 clarinets, 1 alto sax, 1 tenor sax, 2 trombones and a percussionist with yours truly playing the keyboard. I'm not very good at that while directing, so if any of you piano players out there want to join us, please let me know. There's room for more, so encourage your band students to join us. Oh, and not everyone is a student. We have a couple of adults playing with us too. We'll be playing the offertory in just a couple of weeks!

Studentz Praize to Sing

Our student choir - Studentz Praize - will be singing this Sunday night for our evening worship service. I'm really glad they are going to sing. You may be surpirsed at how good they sound. Many of them, however, are a bit nervous about singing in front of others, so be sure and give them an encouraging word.

They need to be here at 4:45 in the Sanctuary/Worship Center to get in place and go through the song once. They will be switching choir time with Bible study time this week.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008


Here we are again, cruising through a Tuesday night. My lovely wife, Cheryl, is already asleep and I've grown bored with computer games, the New Hampshire election results are only interesting for so long, so naturally my thoughts have turned to Wednesday and, YEAH, Choir Rehearsal. I LOVE Wednesdays!

I really love the music in Bow the Knee too. If you missed rehearsal last week I hope you can join us tomorrow to hear this beautiful work.

And not only are the songs beautiful, the script is excellent. It looks at the last week of Jesus' life through the eyes of the Centurion - the one who had such great faith. You can read about him here - the story of the Centurion found in Matthew 8

There is all kinds of interesting information in tomorrow night's Inchoirer so be sure and pick up a copy. I'll post most of that info here on Thursday, but it's just not the same as reading it in person with all of your choir friends at 6:30 Wednesday night.

I'll be looking for you then!

Monday, January 7, 2008

Praise Teams Returning

One of the main reasons we took a break from our Praise Teams was because I wanted to figure out a way where we could get the monitors where the singers were comfortable with what they were hearing and where we weren't blowing out the first two rows in the congregation with the amount of sound we wanted.

We looked at these, but thought they might be a little too large for the platform area.
What we came up with - for now - is a separate monitor for the praise teams. (We hope to eventually move to an "in ear" system.) Right now we have that monitor where the praise teams can mix the piano, drums, etc. in their monitor themselves. We are working on getting it where they can mix their own mics in too, but have a few things to rework before that can happen.
We'll begin again soon - possibly this Sunday. Stay tuned...

Handbell Festival - Feb. 22-23

The Handbell Festival for Middle Tennessee is February 22-23. Our handbell choir will be attending. We had our first look at the music for festival last night. They made some good choices for this year's music.

For those of you who have never been to a handbell festival, this is how it works. We will join 15 or so other choirs from across the state and ring four songs together. We will also play one song by ourselves for "adjudication" which is a fancy way of saying we'll ring for some judges who will then give us a score and tell us all the wonderful things we did as we rang.

Tim Waugh will be our clinician this year. That means he will be directing all of the choirs when we play together.

This is a good picture of Tim, but it doesn't show his pony-tail. He's a great director and makes festival fun!

You can see all of this info and more at

Thursday, January 3, 2008

A Ride to Tulsa and Singing in Heaven

As most of you know, we left Whites Creek this morning for Tulsa - my son driving his van with his wife, three children and me (Papa) while Grani (Cheryl) drove her car with Christy and her two babies. I got to ride in the back. Wow! Riding down I-40 at 200 miles an hour is a whole different experience form the back! Twelve and a half hours later we arrived. Try keeping five children cooped up in a car for twelve hours then let them loose in great-grandma's house and watch the fun! Wheeee!!

Gibson, my oldest grandson (five) knew Grandmama and wanted to know how she died. One of the relatives - who will remain nameless to protect her bad theology - said, "Jesus came and got her." Gibson lit up and was very excited. "Did you get a picture?"

Wouldn't that be cool? We didn't get a picture, but we know Grandmama is with Jesus. I'll leave the preaching for the preachers, but I know once you're in heaven it's all music and dancing 'round the throne. Grandmama is there now singing the song of the redeemed, "Worthy is the Lamb that was slain."

We actually get to have a head start on what is taking place in heaven as we gather together every Sunday morning! I'll be looking for you all as we worship together this Sunday.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Sunday's Anthem

Sunday's Anthem - Our Heart
This is the "All Nations Worship" window from a church in Alaska. I think it's cool.
See you Sunday morning!