worship

BeatBuddy

If you have ever been involved in the ministry of praise and worship, on large or small scale, you’ve probably heard some worship leaders say that a good drummer is as scarce as hen’s teeth. In my experience this seems to be very true.

I have tried everything, from offering free drum lessons to anyone who wants to learn (even though I knew this would mean that if the person learns fast, it will be at least a few months or even a year before they will be able to play in church), to putting up signs at all the local music schools saying that our church is looking for a drummer that loves the Lord and would like to join a worship team. With all this effort I still struggled to find a drummer that was willing and able to commit to the team. I have had a couple of great drummers over the years but still at times found myself wanting on a Sunday in the percussion department.

One day I stumbled across a YouTube video of a guitar player that controls the drums with a foot pedal and this immediately caught my attention.  This nifty device is called the BeatBuddy. It was designed by David Packouz from Singular Sound and after watching a few video tutorials about it, I realized that this device could become my Worshipbuddy/Drummer.

I managed to get my hands on a BeatBuddy and after playing around on it for a couple of days, I realized that this tool can definitely be of great benefit for many worship leaders who do not have a drum kit or drummers in their churches.  The BeatBuddy comes with 200 pre-made loops and a very big variety of drum beats and fills that can be used right out of the box. You can also buy a footswitch that makes the device more adaptable and realistic.

We as worship leaders know the importance of dynamics. Worship in itself has many different styles and genres. I have found that the pre-made beats on the BeatBuddy does not always accommodate the variety we find in Praise and Worship. For your average modern worship song, you will probably require your drummer to play at least 4-6 different intensity levels as the dynamics of the song builds and fades away. It is because of this very reason that I started to dig into the midi editor tool of the BeatBuddy Manager software.  The biggest benefit of the BeatBuddy is that everything is adjustable and editable. I started playing around on the BeatBuddy Manager software and realized that I can write my own beats and fills to the extent where it is exactly the way I would play it on the drums in church on a Sunday. The songs I have written the drums for are saved on the BeatBuddy’s memory card and freely available whenever I want to play that song again.

The BeatBuddy has been accompanying me to band practices over the last couple of months. It has been giving my band the benefit of drums even though the drummer for that Sunday could not attend a midweek practice. I have used the BeatBuddy live in services when necessary and found it easy to use with the added benefit of sounding great over our system. Some congregation members were amazed by the great sounding drums without seeing a player behind the drum kit.

I have realized that there’s a big need for more Worship song beats on the BeatBuddy, and also more custom parts that can be used for praise and worship as this is an amazing tool to use for this cause. I have started to write drums for Worship songs to be used on the BeatBuddy and published it on my YouTube channel. I play the song using the BeatBuddy, showing how I transition from one part to the next on each video explaining how it’s done. All my beats are free to download and found in a link in the description of each video. Here’s the URL for my channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCeMabfSQd6SuDN6TDyjwERQ

With my drumming background of almost 20 years and my worship leading experience over the last 10 years, I have realized that I am in a very unique position where I can really make a difference on a more global scale by creating drum parts and songs for churches to use. That is why I would like to help churches to acquire the BeatBuddy and also do one on one training where I show how to upload songs and use the BeatBuddy for playing those specific songs in the local church.

I know that playing with a live drummer will always be number one, but the BeatBuddy is definitely the next best thing if you don’t have a drummer for a Sunday.

Please contact me if you are interested in buying a BeatBuddy or would like a demo of how it works, I would love to help out J

Antonie Botha

Worship Sound Solutions

beatbuddyworship@gmail.com

0845454016