To Click or not to Click (Using backing tracks and click tracks pt. 1)

What is click? Click is the “new” way to say metronome. But instead of just practicing with it, you (with the help of in-ear monitors) actually play live with the metronome constantly clicking away in your ears. This is great for tempo but can take a few Sundays to get used to. Click can be huge help to get your drummer not to rush or slow down (Or to get your worship leader to not speed up or slow down.)

One step further is what is called backing or enhancement tracks. This often includes a two channel mix where the click (metronome) is on the left channel and the enhancement or backing track (this is often synth sounds, pads, perhaps a drum beat or electronic sound and sometimes even instruments that you are missing.)is on the right channel. Also on the left channel along with the click you will often have vocal cues. These vocal cues actually tell you what part of the song is coming up. This is also great because if utilized well you can cut down on group practice time by quite a bit. This sounds like, “Verse two three four…” by a usually siri or animatronic like voice. (like the one in

The downside of the enhancement track of course is that you are locked into the song progression and won’t be able to deviate without cutting the whole enhancement track.

Advantages include a more consistent and accurate tempo, a full sound, a better ability to time the service (especially if you are doing multi sites), everyone knows where you are and where you are going.

Disadvantages include being stuck to a certain program possibly limiting where you are “lead” during the service, the inability to slow down and speed up for certain parts of the song.

There are of course more advantages and disadvantages but for this blog I am going to talk about the process I have gone through to include more backing and enhancement tracks in MCC’s worship sets.

 

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