Song Leaders Resources

«Back to Hymnal | Page 2 | Back to Member Resources

SUBJECT: Song Leading

QUESTION: Are there any sources on the Internet to help us with song leading?


Yes there are. Following are a number of web sites we found which will provide information on the subject of Song Leading. We offer these only as sources from which you may glean information and we, in no way, necessarily agree with nor indorse everything you might see at any of these sites.

If you find additional sources that could be added to this list, contact us at

Resource 1: From the Girl Scout Organizations-some good basic information and resources here.

Resource 2: Principles of Song Leading by L Leroy Neff. This document is in .pdf (Adobe Acrobat) format and is located here. You can obtain a free Adobe Acrobat Reader here.

Resource 3: The Seven Deadly Sins of Song Leading. See this complete text on Page 2 of this section.

Resource 4:


A Guide to Song Leading

by Danny Jones

Availability: Usually ships within 1-2 business days

8 used & new from $1.99

Edition: Paperback


Leading the Church's Song

by Robert Buckley Farlee (Editor), et al (Paperback - March 1999)

Usually ships in 24 hours

List Price: $25.00

Buy new: $17.50

Used & new from $13.95


Resource 5:


BEGINNING SONG LEADING TECHNIQUES by Steve Attaway. This video production is well done and the music used as samples is excellent. There is an introduction to musical notes, demonstrations for leading various types of music (2,3,4,6, and 9 beats), and various pointers for church song leading. At-A-Boy Productions, P.O. Box 62, Argyle, TX 76226. (817) 464-3149. Please note that it is possible that Attaway has changed his musical styles since first producing this video, and we cannot guarantee that he currently promotes sound Christian music.

CHORAL DIRECTOR'S REHEARSAL AND PERFORMANCE GUIDE by Lewis Gordon (Parker Publishing Company, West Nyack, New York). This book was described by a reader as follows: "It is easy reading with excellent ideas about working with your group, building their vocal quality (breathing, warming up, etc.). It shows the basic directing patterns and conducting techniques. It also includes a brief description of Music history."

ESSENTIALS IN CONDUCTING by Gehrkens (Presser). This book is out of print, but it is possible to obtain archival copies for those willing to pay for it. Presser Company, 1 Presser Place, Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania 19010. (610) 525-3636 (voice), (610) 527-7841 (fax), (e-mail), (web site).

HOW TO DIRECT MUSIC. A course in church music direction. Swan Productions, 7122 Franklin Rd., Murfreesboro, TN 37128. (615) 904-2156.

YOU CAN LEAD SINGING: A SONG LEADER'S MANUAL by Glenn Lehman. Order directly from Lehman at (850) 477-8812. Or order via the web at Amazon Books, P.O. Box 80387, Seattle, WA 98108-0387. (800) 201-7575, (e-mail), (web site).

Resource 6:

How to Lead Songs

  • The name of the song: Announce each song clearly and name the tune if it is not an original song.
  • The pitch or key: Sing a few notes to give the pitch. Be sure the whole group has it. If you are too high or too low, stop and start again.
  • The tempo - beating time: Start everyone at the same time. Shout in rhythm with the time: "Let's go," or clap your hands, or tap your feet and start on the next beat. Use simple hand motions; the up and down pump handle motion, to keep the group together.
  • Information about the song: The words, the tune. Be sure the whole group knows the song. If they don't, teach them. It is best to sing with the songbooks closed.
  • Pep
  • enthusiasm: Don't insist on volume, at least not at f first. Let the group know that it is singing you want, not noise or volume.
  • Leadership
  • control: Plan your selections carefully. Choose songs that fit the group and occasion or the messages hear today. Avoid parodies or songs that may offend someone. Don't ask the group what they want to sing - tell them.