We’ve created a guide for you with all of Bethel Music’s favorite gear and equipment for Sunday’s, touring, and recording! Scroll through to find your instrument and learn more about what kind of quality gear is best for your sound at your local church!
Brian and Jenn Johnson founded Bethel Music as a label in 2010 with the dream of marrying the excellence of musicianship with the edge of prophetic worship. The couple wanted to write songs for the global church while also facilitating a global worship community and family. The next step was to raise up musicians and singers who’s talent matched their anointing. That’s when Brian, Jenn, and their team began to push each other creatively and experiment with new things, stewarding and multiplying what God had already breathed on.
You were created to do the impossible and do it with excellence. Proverbs 22:29 tells us that a man of excellence will “stand before kings.” The Bible says David was excellent with his harp and sling, and because of that he was asked to play over the King and later sleighed Goliath.
At Bethel Music and WorshipU, we have made it our responsibility to co-labor with God by linking arms with Him and being good stewards of what we have. One of the ways that we pursue excellence in our craft is by investing in quality instruments and musical gear for worship sets, performing, songwriting and recording. We started from scratch with a small budget, and after almost a decade of experimentation, trial and error, we have learned some things that we wanted to share with you.
Through our partnership with Sweetwater, we created a collection of our favorite suggestions for instruments, gear, hardware, and software. Scroll through to find your instrument and learn more about what kind of quality gear is best for your sound at your local church!
- Tama 14″ Steel Regular Snare Wires – 42 Strand
These snare wires provide a depth of sound with the 42 snare wires, while most snares have around 16 wires.
- Evans E-Rings Standard Pack
These E-rings pave the way for a focused, controlled and singular snare sound!
- MRTOM Moongel Drum Damper Pads – Blue
This Moongel will take care of the last bit of overtone that happens in drum sound.
- Remo Vintage Emperor Coated Drumhead – 12″
These drumheads have a classic tone that can’t be replicated and doesn’t clash with the other sounds that are happening at the same time while drumming. The coated heads are tuned a bit lower to make the drums feel more cohesive with the best balance of punch and sustain.
- Remo Clear Ambassador Drumhead – 12″
With the emperor on top and the ambassador on the bottom, this drumhead gives the perfect balance of sound for what we’re trying to achieve. This is a great combination of dark and bright at the same time.
- Remo Powerstroke 4 Coated Drumhead – 14″
We like to have control when looking for a snare sound, and this drumhead has a warm sound, with a focused punch. The inlay enhances the midrange sounds to give a warm and punchy tone.
- Remo Clear Ambassador Drumhead – 14″
Made from a single layer of 10-mil Mylar, Clear Ambassador heads have the freedom and flexibility they need to fully respond to every stroke, giving them the sharp attack and full-bodied sustain you need.
- DW 9000 Series Drum Throne – Tractor Seat – Air Lift
This drum throne comes with a quad-leg folding base that resists toppling in any direction. Its oversized tractor seat with thick foam padding cradles your spine and legs for all-night relief.
- DW 9000 Series Pedal – Single – Standard Footboard
This pedal comes with DW’s Tri-Pivot toe clamp system, a non-slip rubber grip base plate, and the new EZ Adjust cam that lets you morph between Accelerator and Turbo drive. You can also switch between the chain drive and the included nylon strap.
- DW DWCP9300AL 9000 Series Air Lift Snare Stand
The pneumatic shock allows your snare drum to float on a cushion of air for quick, effortless, and exact adjustments every time.
- DW DWCP9500D 9000 Series 3-Leg Hi-hat Stand
This hi-hat stand has DW’s patented Double Eccentric Cam and Adjustable Locking Spring Tension feature, combined to give you the sensitive response and balance you need to play your best.
- DW 6000 Series Ultra Light Boom Cymbal Stand
The stand’s DW 6700UL’s light-gauge steel tubing and low-mass joints are engineered to provide stable placement without weighing down your hardware bag.
- DW Top and Bottom Cymbal Felts
This set also includes two washers, so you’re covered there as well.
- Cymbal Protector
This forms a protective barrier that keeps out dirt, protects the metal from oxidizing and prevents fingerprints in handling and stick marks through play.
- Beyerdynamic M 88 TG
- DW The Moon Mic
- Shure SM57 Cardioid Dynamic Instrument Microphone
- Sennheiser MD 441U
- Sennheiser MD 421-II Cardioid Dynamic Microphone
- AKG C414 XLII/ST Crash Mics
Drum Kit for Small Churches
- Yamaha Stage Custom Birch Shell Pack
If you are playing at a smaller church, the smaller the room, the warmer the kit should sound. Rather than a bright sound, go for something more punchy. The Yamaha Stage Custom is a great value for the price, easy to tune, keeps its tone, and Yamaha has some of the best hardware out there. Everything is high-quality and durable from the kick pedal to the high hat stand.
- Ludwig Black Beauty Snare Drum
This snare is what started Bethel on the journey of discovering high-quality snare sounds. Without the black beauty, we wouldn’t be where we are today!
- Fender Twin Reverb Tube Combo Amp
The EQ on this amp is well rounded as a whole and not too bright, giving it a really nice breakup tone. It growls and punches without getting muddy.
- Fender Blues Junior III Tube Combo Amp
This amp is a cheaper option that offers a wide EQ range, a bright top end, and a sweet breakup tone. It has a good speaker in the back that gives you room to do what you want with it.
- Fender Princeton Reverb Tube Combo Amp
This amp has a really good breakup tone because it’s smaller with a 1×10 speaker. It offers a great tone but can be made quieter if you need it to if you’re in situations where you can’t isolate amps.
- Strymon BigSky Multidimensional Reverb Pedal
Anything from Strymon is amazing! This pedal allows for a large amount of customization with the different types of reverb, all while sounding very high quality. The stereo image of the reverb is really wide, allowing a single guitar player to fill a huge space on their own.
- Strymon TimeLine Multidimensional Delay Pedal
This pedal is similar to the Bigsky, and there is a large amount of customization for each of the different types of delay. It’s very out of the box, having some of the truest and widest sounding delay tones, where other pedals fail to accomplish a simple wide sound or take hours of programming to do what the Timeline does by itself.
- Strymon Zuma 9-output Guitar Pedal Power Supply
This power supply offers 500ma of power with little to no hum. It also converts international power automatically, which makes it ideal for a touring guitarist. You can chain the Strymon Ojai off of it, making it extremely easy to add more powerlines to your board. It also comes with its own power cables.
- Strymon Ojai 5-output High Current Guitar Pedal Power Supply
For smaller boards, or for being able to lay out your power more strategically, the Ojai gives a ton of power for such a tiny box. You can easily chain them together, to give you more than enough power for a pedalboard. It also comes with its own power cables.
- Strymon El Capistan dTape Echo Pedal
This is a bit cheaper and smaller than the Timeline, but one of the most quality stereo tape delay pedals out there!
- JHS The Kilt V2 Overdrive Pedal
This is a tasteful mid-range overdrive and distortion pedal. The V2 lets you access a higher gain setting with the push of a button, giving you multiple gain stages through one pedal.
- Walrus Audio Julia Analog Chorus / Vibrato Pedal
Even though it’s a mono modulation pedal, it sounds extremely lush and huge with a lot of customization for the chorus and vibrato. It’s also a small pedal and can fit easily on a more compact board.
- Boss TU-3 Chromatic Tuner Pedal with Bypass
This is an accurate tuner that also has a buffer in it if you’re looking for a cheaper option that gives you both in one.
- JHS SuperBolt V2 Overdrive Pedal
This is a great first-mid stage gain pedal that can clean up and act as a lightly colored boost or can be used for lead lines.
- Dunlop DVP4 Volume (X) Mini Pedal
This is a cheap but high-quality pedal with a small footprint that can fit on a smaller board and can be used as an expression pedal. It has a smooth sweep from heel to toe and you can adjust how much pressure is needed to increase or decrease volume.
- Mogami CorePlus Instrument R Cable – 20′
This cable lasts a long time and won’t lose signal or quality quickly.
- Dunlop Tortex Standard .88mm Green Guitar Picks or .73mm Yellow
These are sturdy and high-quality with a good grip on them. .88mm works for our tonality because it doesn’t give too much pick attack, neither is the pick too thick—it’s the perfect middle ground and it’s become a fave of all our guitarists. You get a lot out of these picks for a very good price.
- D’Addario Nickel Wound Electric Strings -.011-.049 Medium
These have a greater lifespan and they don’t get dull as quickly as other strings we’ve used.
- D’Addario EXL115BT Nickel Wound Medium Electric Strings -.011-.050
These have pretty much the same quality but without the same lifespan. These are great for guitarists who play a lot, need to change their strings quite often but also don’t want to break the bank
- Martin OM-21 with LR Baggs Anthem pickup installed
This is the guitar you buy when you know you want to be an acoustic player. It’s the industry standard. We use it in our studios, on tours, and on Sunday’s. We discovered it after making dozens of purchases, searching for a guitar with the most consistent sound and tone. Josh Baldwin uses it, Paul McClure uses it—it’s our go-to guitar.
With this pickup, you can blend between the microphone and the piezo pickup, which lets you have more control over the sound your guitar produces beyond just EQ. It does a great job without feeding back. John-Paul Gentile, our main acoustic player swears by it. “It rules, man.”
- MacBook Pro 2015 or later, with at least 16GB of RAM and with SSD
- Nord Stage 3 88 Stage Keyboard
If you’re using onboard keyboard sounds, Nords are the best! They’re very natural-sounding and upgradeable.
- M-Audio Oxygen 61 Keyboard Controller
If you plan on using computer-based keyboard sounds, this is very useful.
- iConnectivity Play AUDIO12 Dual-USB Audio and MIDI Interface for Live
This is an excellent audio interface for keyboardists wanting to use stems while playing keyboard. It’s very reliable with great sound quality and the ability to have redundancy.
- Korg nanoKONTROL2
This is a very small and affordable keyboard MIDI controller. It allows you to control various parameters inside your keyboard software or DAW.
- Ableton Live 10 Standard
Ableton is a great host application for keyboardists wanting to use stems live. Its internal sounds are quite poor, but it can host 3rd party high-quality instruments and play stems at the same time. It Includes the ability to spontaneously change stem arrangements on the fly.
- Reason Studios Reason 11 Suite
This is the best all-around instrument for keyboardists, including thousands of sounds and covering nearly every genre.
- Spectrasonics Keyscape Collector Keyboards
This has very solid sounds in the piano and Rhodes category.
- Spectrasonics Omnisphere 2.6 Software Synthesizer
This has great sounds for synths.
- Avid Pro Tools
- Celemony Melodyne 4 editor
This is ideal for tuning vocals in post-production.
- Antares Autotune Pro
This is Ideal for tuning vocals in live production.
- Waves SSL 4000
This is the best channel strip and compressor bundle.
- Waves CLA Classic Compressors
This is the best compressor bundle.
- Steven Slate Trigger
This allows you to enhance your poor drum tones.