TYPES OF SONGWRITERS

If you're a songwriter who writes worship music, I feel your pain. Not only is it an extremely difficult songwriting genre (maybe the hardest), but the culture is also overrun with too many worship songs as is.

Let me encourage you to keep at it, though! If God's given you the gift of songwriting, He most definitely has a place in mind where those songs need to go! Keep listening and learning and praying - and keep writing!

I believe there are three types of worship songwriters. In my experience, these three categories cover the entirety of songs written for the church. Some of us write in all three categories, but most of us seem to be gifted specifically in one area. As you read, think about your songwriting and where you might land. Or even better, pass this post to a friend and ask them their opinion of your writing.

EXPRESSERS
These are the songwriters who capture it. My wife says this all the time when she hears a great worship song: "It says exactly what I feel and think about God." Expressers' songs won't seem like much on paper, but they will perfectly capture truth and adoration without even knowing it. Expressers typically write from a very personal place about what they're thinking/feeling about God, but their songs end up reaching people because they fit what other people are thinking/feeling, too.

PROCLAIMERS
These are the songwriters who teach it. These songs won't be as personal as the "Expresser" songs, but they'll have much more in the way of sound doctrine. Proclaimers' songs will typically have longer lyrics and more predictable melodies. These writers create from a place of responsibility, crafting songs that will instruct and educate God's people as they sing. We are in desperate need for writers like this!

ARRANGERS
These are the songwriters who present it. As of late, there's been a recent increase in Arranger writers. These songs typically have deep, nuanced musical settings - extremely creative, unexpected song-orders and top-notch musicianship. You'll find Arranger songs in the ambient worship genre as well as the hyper-produced pop field. Arranger's lyrics may be much more simple than the other two categories, but will make their mark by creating unforgettable soundscapes.

Knowing your identity and skill set as a writer will help you to take on the right projects. If you know what you're best at, you won't waste time trying to write things that you're just not gifted for. We all want to grow as writers, but don't neglect the thing you do best!