Thinking Out Loud

April 18, 2014

I Screwed Up

Filed under: music — Tags: , , , , , — paulthinkingoutloud @ 2:56 pm

A title like that one is almost guaranteed to bring in readers because we love to read about others’ mistakes. So today I’ll be one of the others.

I totally messed up a piece in this morning’s Good Friday service. A major brain cramp. It was a medley of two songs, two verses each, and when I finished the first verse of the first one, my eyes went back to to the top of the page, but my hands went on to the second piece. So there I was at the keyboard, and I just kept going because I couldn’t stop. About a dozen painful bars of this, and my brain reset enough to go into the next section.

We’ve been practicing this piece since February.

When the service was over, I went into the prayer room which is just off the front of the sanctuary and just sat on the couch in the dark.  I would probably still be there now if my family hadn’t found me. (Slightly exaggerated, perhaps; I probably would have eventually got hungry.)

Still, I haven’t had one of these screw-up in a long time.

Right now, music is a four-letter word. I think it’s time to retire.  Do you ever feel like giving up when things crash?  What’s the worst thing you’ve ever done on a church platform? Please comment; I need somebody else to be one of the others now. 



  1. The last two solos (offertories) I dood, I screwed.

    The first time, I think it was (honestly) a bit of ‘performance pride’ where God wanted me to get out of the way so He could use the lyrics being sung. I flubbed an entry point into the rather-new-to-me song.

    Next time was last Sunday – my own song! (well, Nancy’s lyrics). This time I had only 4 hours sleep (if that) and so I forgot the amount of shaker beats that led into the song and was ahead a bar. THEN I lost focus (confidence) because of that and there was a back-track drop out to boot which further fouled things up.

    But here’s the thing. I was told that my ‘after song apology’ wasn’t necessary. That the music, the message and the lyrics are what counted. My apology made the song about me, in other words. Lesson learned: you’re gonna mess up but God works in spite of flubs and failings. Even in music. I recall a famous pianist (I mean REALLY famous) laughing about ‘all the notes that fell under the piano’. Kinda good to hear that a few 32’s get flubbed in the hands of a master. :-)

    Don’t be so hard on yourself. Music worship is about Him, not you. I’m just starting to get that … even now.

    Comment by Flagrant Regard — April 18, 2014 @ 6:03 pm

  2. Okay – you may or may not delete this, I don’t know. But here, for all the world, is the ULTIMATE PODIUM FLUB of all time. Enjoy!


    Comment by Flagrant Regard — April 18, 2014 @ 6:08 pm

    • For now it’s still there on the grounds that nobody reads the comments anyway.
      But Mrs. W. objects to it on the grounds that it’s “years old.”

      Comment by paulthinkingoutloud — April 18, 2014 @ 7:47 pm

  3. Ah, but a good flub is TIMELESS! How long has America’s Funniest Videos been running? Huh?

    ps: Only the musician notices the degree of any musical flub – the average congregation member … not so much. It’s been proven to me many time and yet I still don’t want to believe it. Pride … an awful thing…

    Comment by Flagrant Regard — April 18, 2014 @ 7:57 pm

  4. This morning I began reading the Scripture for a community Good Friday service and my eyes began to get blurry and I nearly had a panic attack as my leg stared nervously twitching and I had to grip the pulpit to focus and get through the passage i was reading. That hasn’t happened in 24 years!

    Comment by rickda — April 18, 2014 @ 10:22 pm

    • RICKDA: You should have read the passage in the voice of ELVIS … kept the leg twitch. ;-) Maybe it would not be so well-received on Good Friday, mind you…

      (ps: hope you’re getting tested for stroke – and I’m not being funny here.)

      Comment by flagrantregard — April 19, 2014 @ 12:06 pm

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