by Stan Sheridan
I remember when the famous iPad was going to be released. It was the big topic with me and my Mac buddies. We couldn’t wait! Of course, none of us could afford it, but it was still fun to dream of the day when we could.
However, knowing I couldn’t really afford or justify the purchase, I bought it anyway (with my wife’s consent, of course). I knew I could always return it within 30 days, only paying the 10% re-stocking fee (it would be worth $50 to have it for a month, at least).
You’ve already guessed it: I never did return that machine. I’m typing this post with it now. I love it! And I must say, every worship leader should own one. However, since pastors always make more money than worship leaders, I suggest that they be the ones to bless their loyal side-kicks. WHY?
1. An iPad is so convenient. Not the best reason, I know, but it’s so handy on a Tuesday night practice, for example, to pull out the iPad to download a quick song for the band, or even watch a YouTube version of the same selection. It’s so convenient to have the Internet, your emailing files, YouTube, any song chart of your dreams…and about anything else to help you become a better worship leader at your fingertips.
2. An iPad is perfect for a cleaner stage. Before the iPad, I kept a three ring binder packed with charts, about the size of my first 78 Chevy (I should have neched to a mic stand. It definitely makes a better impression when the audience can actually see the worship leader, instead of a three ring binder with about 27,352 pages hanging out and dangling from their old black band stand.
3. An iPad could bring some organization to your life. All of my charts are in i Books, as well as many of my important files. All of my dates are stored in my calendar, with an alarm on each item to remind me of the upcoming event (including the birthday of my generous pastor). All of my contacts are within seconds, stored neatly in my contact app. Also, one of my favorite apps, Song Suggest, will bring up several thousand
your sound tech, your spouse, your mom, a bored jr higher…anyone…can get in touch with you. If my wife needs me, for example, she can text my iPad and it will immediately be displayed on my screen. A great tool to communicate, even in the middle of “Heart of Worship”.
5. Finally, Pastors, buying your worship leader an iPad is just a nice thing to do. What a great way to say thanks. Your worship leader serves you, loves you, honors you, backs you up…and more. If not, then maybe a great gift like an iPad will help you out. Come on, be a champ!
Favorite Apps For Worship Leaders:
Garage Band. It turns your iPad, iPhone or iPod touch into a collection of Touch Instruments and a full-featured recording studio. At $4.99, this one cost a little more, but it’s worth it. About everything you can do on your Mac laptop, you can do on your handheld device. It keeps my mind busy and creative.
Clear tune Chromatic Tuner. It is a chromatic instrument tuner and pitch pipe that allows you to quickly and accurately tune your instrument using the built-in mic in your iPad, iPhone or using an external mic on your 2nd or 3rd generation iPod Touch. Perfect tuner for the road.
Quick Voice Recorder. This is the most popular, full-featured voice recorder available. Record ideas, voice memos, voice email, dictation, lists, meetings… and song ideas. I use it all of the time. I have many hits waiting on my Quick- Voice Recorder…I hope.
Song Suggest. Over 13,000 Downloads in less than 1 year. You can choose a theme, a key, and tempo — and Song Suggest will give you many praise and worship ideas. It’s also great for the worshiper who simply wants more info about their favorite worship song. Plus, I love the fact that a couple of worship leaders put this one out. Also, available in Spanish.
Kindle. With a Kindle account (free at Amazon), you can now download any of your songs or files to your account and they will be available on your Kindle app. I have all of my song charts…and more on my “Kindle”. It’s an easy way for me to have many of my docs from my laptop at any time — on the stage in the middle of a set, or on the road. Wherever, it’s a great app. (This can also be done in i Books…for those who aren’t kindle fans).
Metronome. One of the first things I tell my students is to purchase a Metronome — if you can’t play with a metronome, you can’t play. Some days I can better than others. Most of you know what a metronome is, but if you don’t, you will have to download it to understand. It simply keeps a beat, and your goal is to stay on beat. Purchase it today and learn to play with a metronome.
TextPlus Silver. This is a free texting app, which gives my team another way to get in touch with me. The reason I suggest it, though, is because it’s the perfect way for anyone, including my wife and kids, to get in touch with me during a set. I constantly have my iPad on the stage with me, and the moment I have a text, it will pop up on my screen. Great way to communicate with the sound tech, the pastor, or another team member, as well.
Square. This is an app that gives you the ability to accept credit cards. I use it at every concert or convention where I may be selling product. I use it to receive registration fees for re- treats or music camps. I use it to sell product on the internet. It’s a great app — and it’s free. You simply have to pay a very small charge (2-3%) for every purchase that you run with the Square. You can manually punch in the credit card information or you can you use the small attachment that they will send you to swipe the card, also free.
Holy Bible. Worship leaders, if you’re not in the Word, you’re not a true worship leader. We must worship first, before we expect our congregations to follow. I’m sure you know this, and I’m sure you already have the Bi- ble downloaded into your iPad, iPhone or iPod touch, but if you don’t, this is a great app. It includes about every translation out there today.
Angry Birds. I use this app when I’m needing to take out my frustration with that one band member or the associate pastor. I’m kidding (maybe, I’ll let you decide), but it is one game that gets my mind off of life for a few minutes. I encourage you to have a little fun at least a few minutes a day — if not with this app, find something.