Something Near and Dear

In 2005 Crumbacher along with Undercover, The Altar Boys, The Choir, and 441, all bands that had released albums on Frontline Records, got together and played a concert in Irvine, California. It was an amazing night and we had so much fun. We recorded the concert on video with the intent to make it available to friends and fans soon after. Getting all the legal signoffs and such took time and well, life went on.

The time has finally come and my friends at Take 2 Productions are ready to finish and release this 5 band 3 1/2 hour concert. KickStarter to the rescue. 

Read more here

The Most Important Training a Tech Director Can Provide

One of the best parts of being a TD in a church is the diversity of things that must be done to support the ministry of the organization. Some of this is actual physical work but most of being a TD is working with people. I tell up-and-coming TDs and tech leaders, “Make no mistake, this is a people business”. And that is a good thing. Jesus is in the people business. Read more here


I Don't Know

I see this all the time. People speaking authoritatively from a position of ignorance. The internet is awesome for this. Just check out any of the online forums or groups. And pick a topic—any topic. I of course see this in church tech groups, but it exists everywhere. I also see it in every day life. I’ll hear someone make a fairly definitive statement that obviously comes from a place of no knowledge or background. But boy, are they convinced they’re right. My mom used to have a magnet on the fridge that said, “My mind is made up—don’t confuse me with the facts.” 

What does this have to do with being a technical leader in church? Quite a lot, actually. I’ve removed a large amount of equipment from various churches over the years, and I’m sure it was all installed confidently. That is, whoever installed it was confident in their choice. Even if that choice was not based in any kind of knowledge or experience. Even if it didn’t work. At all. That wastes a lot of money and undermines trust in our profession. 

Mr. Know-It-All

Why does this happen? Well, I think there is an unnecessarily engrained concept in most of us that we have to be right all the time. And we have to know everything about our jobs. Now, the truth is, it’s impossible to know everything about a subject. And if you ask people that have been doing a particular thing for a long time, they will likely tell you that the longer they do it, the more they realize they don’t know.

But not so when we’re starting out. We know everything! And that is a dangerous place to be. Look, I’ve been doing production/tech/design now for going on 30 years. I’m the expert. I get paid to tell churches what they need. And I can’t even tell you how many times I say, “I don’t know.” There are literally tens of thousands of pieces of gear in the AV universe, and it’s impossible to know the details of all them (let alone know that all of them exists!). Often times, the best thing I can tell someone is, “I don’t know.” But I don’t stop there.

Let Me Find Out

When I say, “I don’t know,” it’s almost always followed by, “but let me find out.” Then, I call or email someone who knows more about this particular thing or topic than I do. I have a deep contact file filled with smart people who I call when I don’t know something. Once I get an answer, I report back, and life goes on. The problem is solved and everyone is happy. 

But you know when people are not happy? When I (or someone like me) make up an answer that we think might be right and it doesn’t work out. Best case, we waste some time. Worst case, we break stuff. Find out the right answer and move on. There is no shame in not knowing everything. But there is in breaking stuff because you made up a wrong answer.


If you want to last in this business, you need credibility. One senior pastor I worked for once said to me, “Mike, I’ve worked with a lot of tech guys and they all come in and tell me the last guy didn’t know what he was doing and it all needs to be changed. Why should I listen to you?” That is a legitimate question. Two years later, he was listening to me. Why? Because I made smart decisions, after consulting with smart people that made real improvements. 

Know that when you start as a TD of a church, you start where I did. Why should anyone listen to you? Don’t burn the tiny little bit of credibility you have as the new guy by making stupid decisions. Don’t do things confidently out of ignorance. Get help. Find good advice. Make smart decisions. Don’t gamble your church’s money on ideas you think might work. And please, for the love of all that’s good and holy, don’t listen to every commenter in a Facebook group that thinks that XYZ product is the “best ever!!!” when it’s the only thing they’ve ever used.

Make sure the people you’re getting advice from actually know what they’re talking about. And a good way to tell is that they will often say, “I don’t know. But let me find out.”

DPA Microphones

CTA Reviews: DiGiCo S21

Here's a quick video review of the DiGiCo S21 that I've been playing with for the last few weeks. 

This post is brought to you by Shure Wireless. The new ULX D Dual and Quad wireless systems feature RF Cascade ports, a high density mode with significantly more simultaneous operating channels and bodypack diversity for mission critical applications. Visit their website at