Top tip - songs

by Ishmael
Posted at 09:47am on 18th March 2013

Of course it’s good to include a couple of fun songs with actions, but the best worship songs are the simple ones with very strong melody lines. How can we decipher a strong melody line? Easy! If we can whistle it after listening to it twice, it’s strong! We must not be afraid to include well known hymns and songs, even if we personally think they may be past their sell-by date. Remember to choose songs that people enjoy singing and that work on different levels – and when teaching new songs, try and teach them methodically, only introducing one or two each time. Finally, if we have a complicated word in a song like ‘resplendent’ we must explain what it means… even if we need to consult a dictionary first!


Ishmael has been travelling internationally in a full-time capacity as a musician since 1970.  He has written and recorded over 500 songs, released over 40 albums of his and other writers' songs, and has produced 15 of these.  He has also released 5 music DVDs and written many books, some of which have been translated into German, Dutch, Czech, Danish and Romanian.  He has appeared on national television and radio many times.  Ishmael was ordained into the Anglican Church in 2007 and is now licensed to Chichester Cathedral as their  'Deacon Missioner' and is affectionately known to the Bishop, Dean and Chapter and congregation as 'Deacon Ish'.  He was diagnosed with leukaemia in 2008 but is now in remission having completed chemotheraphy treatment in August 2010.  After 3 years of chemotherapy and hospital visits, a whole new ministry has opened up.  He has now become a volunteer chaplain and visits his hold haematology ward at least once a week, and travels far and wide to visit cancer sufferers to encourage and pray for them.