Building A Culture Of Worship & Songwriting with Vertical Church Band

Featuring Vertical Worship, Essential Music Publishing Posted on January 9, 2015

Discussion around writing for the Church Songs album

  • Each album stems from about 120 songs per cycle.  Over about 5-6 writing retreats and personal writing times.
  • Andi “I have been impacted by 1000’s of church songs.  What we are doing right now is a drop into the ocean of church songs”.
  • We are writing these songs to the Lord.  But how do we get from 120 songs to 11?  We take those multitude of songs and take the 20-25 that are really stirring in our hearts and we play them to our church over about 20 weekends.  After that we can tell whether or not they are giving thumbs up or thumbs down to our songs.  What resonates with the church and ‘sings back to us’ we put on the album. The song leaves the writers room and becomes something that is sung back to the writer, that is when it becomes a ‘church song’

How do we build a worship culture?

  • Every church has a different worship culture.  You cannot borrow a worship culture from another church.  it is defined by the lead pastor and the worship leader setting an example and creating a consistency every week.
  • We often believe that bigger is better, but it is not.  Find the foundational truths behind your worship theology (for Vertical that foundational truth is John 4:13-14 - the women at the well). Gathering song (praises rising, eyes are turning to you, we welcome you with praise) Testimony songs or confessional songs (not for a moment, never let go) Vertical Songs (songs that focus us on God - Holy Holy Holy)
  • Worship is built on lyrical content, just like the word of God.  It’s built on theology.  
  • It’s all about the destination in worship.  The journey is important. It is important that worship is not distracting.  The music is just the vehicle that takes our people to the spirit and truth place.  The place where God receives our worship - the destination.
  • Content must be rooted in theology

How do I build a worship culture?  (Andi Rozier)

  • What matters is what you can do in 30 weekends not in 30 minutes. 
  • Set goals and set an example and opportunity for the church to follow that each week.  Teach on that.  Be purposeful in teaching the church not he foundations of worship.

How do I build a culture? 3 things if you want to grow in ministry - (Eddie Hoagland)

  1.  Start with a good assessment of where you are at. (you cant take people anywhere if you don’t know where you are starting from).  This requires a lot of shepherding. That happens through relationship.  Serving together.  Calling out the things they do well, working with them personally on specific things that need work
  2. Give people a clear vision of where they are headed. (Share the things that inspire you.  Recordings, songs, something to be inspired by.)
  3. What are the steps in multiple between?  (this lands on the worship leader and senior pastor) Finding that in each individual person.  Setting a path that allows them to grow into their abilities and into the culture of worship in the church.

What is on the horizon for Vertical Worship & what is your vision?

  • "If you are not raising your own bar to push yourself higher and higher, then everything falls into itself.” - Andi R
  • At the end of the day, you need to get on stage, make mistakes and learn from them.  We ask the Lord to give us a fresh wave of new songs.  Although we can look at the worship culture as a whole today, the Lord knows exactly where he wants to take the worship culture in the future.
  • A great quote from Paul Baloche that speaks to this is - "There is no secret to worship leadership, besides the secret place and that you spend time there.”

Additional Thoughts on Songwriting:

  • We are writing songs with a focused intent.
  • A song is meant to communicate something and to express something specifically.
  • We want to write songs that allow our spirit to jump into the song and get beyond just loving the Lord with our mind and get to the place to loving the Lord with all our heart.


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