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dogfood 03-26-2014 03:11 PM

ethnic instruments in worship
Does anyone or any of your churches use these?

Last night I had the privilege to blow a large shell during worship. Very nice sound.

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AlphaSigma 03-28-2014 05:04 PM

What makes an instrument 'ethnic'?

dogfood 03-28-2014 05:12 PM

Something from your local people group? ... where do you live?


zedman 03-28-2014 05:59 PM

I've never used that--although I guess in a way--for me, the guitar & bass are ethnic...

But if used tastefully--I don't see why not.

Forgiven-Sinner 03-28-2014 06:22 PM

Each person is going to have their own ideas & opinions. To me - as long as the instrument is adding to the Music being played it belongs. There's a Huge difference between making Music sound better & taking away from what the others are doing.

Kind of like playing a Guitar that's badly out of tune, with other Musicians. It will take away from what the others are playing. As long as an instrument doesn't take away, many unique instruments can be added.

That's Awesome that your being Creative. I wouldn't over use it. But, adding it in from time to time sounds good to me. You could try other instruments too. Such as a Harmonica, Pan Flute, Native American Flute, Egg Shakers, spoons (if your good enough with them) & so on.

The main thing is remembering this is Praise to God, not putting on a performance. If you feel this give Glory to God - Go with it!

dogfood 03-29-2014 03:53 PM

Well yes. Its not so much about performance or fitting in. For us here in nz we use them as something to give an xtra kick in the service. Something quite eerie and cool when during a quiet and tense moment a native warrior sound gets produced. It lifts and stirs people.


Forgiven-Sinner 03-29-2014 05:06 PM

Interesting - Sounds Good to me!

bobthecockroach 03-30-2014 04:06 AM

I think we (as the big c Church) need to do a LOT more of this. The same God-given creativity that produced pop rock and electric guitars produced all the other thousands of styles and instruments on Earth. Modern worship music draws from an incredibly narrow range of influences.

Giuseppe 03-30-2014 04:13 AM

Our trumpet man always plays all kinds of weird percussion instruments when he isn't using the instrument.
A few years back they always had someone playing Congas for worship (we have a large group of Africans in church).
I usually undust a friends Cajon during church retreats and I love using my charango for worship.

I love worship that has a unique sound to it. It is a great way to use the creativity that God has put in us for his Glory. And even when playing a "standard" instrument, to me it is important to play it in my own way/style. I don't like the thought of being an exact copy of X guitarsist, but I want to serve God with the "tone" that he has put in my heart :)

AlphaSigma 03-31-2014 10:28 AM


Originally Posted by dogfood (Post 3831343)
Something from your local people group? ... where do you live?


Minnesota. Not sure what our native instruments would be, ice?

bobthecockroach 03-31-2014 11:43 AM


Originally Posted by AlphaSigma (Post 3831575)
Minnesota. Not sure what our native instruments would be, ice?

Flutes and drums. See:

Of course, those aren't the instruments of our European ancestors. Europeans invented a staggering selection of instruments, of which we use basically none.

You can literally count on one hand the number of instruments generally recognized as usable in modern worship music: drums, guitar, bass, keyboard/piano, and violin (strangely regarded as particularly inventive).

The rest of this list we just pretend doesn't exist:

And don't even get me started on the issue of every modern worship song sounding like it could be a U2 song.

Ted Logan 03-31-2014 01:07 PM

Yesterday, we sang a song to the tune of "The Foggy Dew," a particularly awesome Irish anti-impressment song about the Easter Rising of 1916 (hear Sinead O'Connor sing it with the Chieftains here). Anyway, the hymn we sang was "Am I a Soldier of the Cross," and I literally fulfilled a longtime dream of mine by playing it on the Octave Mandolin accompanied by tin whistle.

It's not the first time I've played the Octave Mando in worship, but it was the first time I got to do so in a true Irish tune. I've been playing my darbuka in worship lately, too, but that's just because we don't have a drummer - I think they'd prefer a drum set to my piddly little hand drum. I expect to have my banjo and hammered dulcimer worked in there at some point, too.

Are the hammered dulcimer and the banjo "ethnic instruments?" I suppose that depends on your definition of "ethnic." They're not idiomatic to Chicagoland and they're seen as strange.

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