Keyboard Lessons For Church

A tour of our church keyboard rig setup

Hey, this is Dave Dolphin at practicalworshipblog , and today I want to give you a tour of our keys position here at the church. Now, our situation's probably pretty similar to many other people's situation in that our keys players aren't really. have a lot of experience playing keys. They generally are piano players that have been asked to play keys. And so, they're going to think like a pianoplayer. They're not used to playing

keyboard parts, and they're certainlynot used to all the technology that's involved here. So, I try to create this position in away that it makes sense for someone that hasthe experience of a piano player and not a keyboard player. So, let me kind of walk you through theprocess as far as, like, how things get from from A to Z. We start with two MIDIcontroller, so I've got this up here. This is the MAudio Oxygen 49

controller, and then also in here—this is a shell of a piano, not a real piano. But inside of it is theMAudio 88 key semiweighted keyboard. Neitherone of these make sound. When I press a button on here, it doesn't do anything but tellsomething, it just makes a command, quot;Hey, someone pressed C5.quot; And then it's up to something downstream to do something with that. So, the sounds don't come out of the controllers. There's USB ports on this and that,

and those cables both go into this laptopover here that's running the program, the Appleprogram, MainStage. So, all the sounds come out of this laptop, and then from here I have the flexibility to assign which sounds go to what controller. And, I generally go with what visuallymake sense, so if it's an organ sound, if it's a pad sound, if it's a, you know, an80s synth from like from a Hillsong Young Freetype song, I'm generally going to put it up here.

If it's a piano sound, like if we're doingquot;Lord I Need Youquot; or something like that, if it's a piano sound I'm going to do it herebecause it visually make sense. Now, sometimes I break that rule. Sometimes I put apiano sound up here. Sometimes I might have a set where every single song is a piano sound except for the last section that's a pad sound, and itwould be visually distracting for the guy to get up from thisposition, come over here to play a pad sound just because pads only come fromhere. So, maybe in the moment people aren'treally conscious of the fact that

there's a pad sound coming from the piano, and we can kind of get away with that, but at the end of the day I have the flexibility toassign sounds to any of these controllers or to both ofthese controls if I want to. I will generally go with what visuallymake sense. Some of the behind the scenes, some of the gear that we keep tucked away. After the laptop we run into this audiointerface, and so the audio for the live keys—out ofMainStage comes out here—we run stereo down to

How to Play Keyboards in a Church Band Blues Scales on Keyboard for a Church Band

TOM SMITH: Hi. This is Tom. This is for ExpertVillage .We're talking about how to play keyboards in a worship team at a church. One thing thatcould help with keyboard leads on some songs is to learn a blues scale. It never hurtsto have that handy because it's an easy way to improvise if you need to usingI don'tknowan organ sound or a piano sound or what have you. A simple blues scaleand let'sdo it in the key of F. So, my regular scale for F is just F, G, A, B flat, C, D, E, F.Now, my blues scale for F, I'm going to go from F, I'm not going to play the G. I'm goingto play like anI'm playing that second note a semitone higher, okayé So, the second isplayedthe second note in the scale is played

a semitone higher. So, I go from F to A flatand then I'm going to jump to the B flat and then I'm going to add in a B natural, okayéSo, I'm going to add in this B natural and then I play C which is in the scale of F.Then I'm going to jump to a flattened 7, so instead of playing an E, I'm going to playan E flat and an F. So, a nice simple blues scale would go from F, A flat, D flat, D,C, E flat, F. So, the same intervals, try that in the common keys that you use likein the key of C, the key of G, key of F for starters, D, so that you can play it comfortably.And then practice it going back and forth so liketry two octaves. And then what youcan do is use variations of those notes to

play a lead. It's just a handy scale to useand it works off well with a lot of the choruses that are used today.

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