Worship Leading Software
I used to have a great big lever arch file of printed out songs with chords on and scribbled chord key changes. They would get out of order and be slow to find if someone started a song during congregational worship. A couple of years ago I installed OnSong on my iPad and have never looked back.
OnSong stores chord charts for all your songs, that can either be downloaded from paid services like CCLi, free websites like www.worshiptogether.com or from sites by worship musicians like Matt Graham.
Songs are stored in the chordpro format, which allows quick tranposing to another key and adding a capo too.
Chordpro uses square brackets to mark up chords. Here is an example from the public domain hymn Oh Come all ye faithful
Title: O Come All Ye Faithful
Original Key: G
O[G] come, all ye[D] faithful
[G]Joyful and trium[D]phant
[Em]O come [A]ye, oh c[D]ome ye to Be[A]–thl[D]ehem
[G]Come and be[D7]hold [G]Him
[D]Born the [Em]king of [D]angels
O [G]come let us adore Him
O [G]come let us adore Him
O [C]come let[G/B] us ad[D]ore Him
[G]Christ [D]the [G]lord
Once you have imported songs simply via dropbox or google drive or other means, you can build a set list of songs for a service.
Then songs are displayed individually and a swipe up or down moves through the song and a swipe to the left or right moves to the previous or next song on the list. I have a bluetooth pedal that makes that simpler, which is available on Amazon UK* and Amazon US*. The pedal I have has five easy to tap buttons for left, right, up and down, which makes moving around a set in OnSong much easier during a service.
It’s very simple to change the key or add a capo setting for easier chord patterns. Just click on the second icon from the right at the top of the screen, which brings down a menu. There you can easily change key, capo and even transpose for a transposing instrument.
Here’s the same hymn transposed into the key of G…
If others in your worship band or orchestra have the OnSong app, then you can share wirelessly and even control the page turning, so you are all on the same page. Lastly you can print all the songs in a set out for those who don’t have the app.
It’s a simple, well designed piece of software and therefore does have a price tag – £29 when I bought it, but I consider it money well spent! One annoyance is if you have an CCLi SongSelect membership and want to change key, but have no internet connection… you can’t! I ended up getting all our songs from other websites!
While you are here – check out my friend Olly Knight’s fantastic new song about the resurrection “The Risen King”