As nightfall has descended upon the National Capital Region, I was supposed to be back home in Birmingham, where I would’ve likely been writing about the Bottega Café on Highland Avenue. A freak snowstorm forced the cancellation of my flight so I’m here instead and going in a different direction. Earlier today was the 2017 Interior Toastmasters Holiday Party & Open House. As the point man for this year’s open house, I did an incredible amount of leg work to ensure we put on a great event…to include securing the South Penthouse during holiday party season, securing a donation of lunch from a nearby eatery and getting a guest speaker. As I was helping the audiovisual team nail down the acoustics a couple of hours before the event, I had a bit of a nostalgic moment from my days in Japan. That brings me to this week’s moment in the Flashback Friday series: the FCF sound booth.
How I first came across this moment? Unofficially, I came across the sound booth at Faith Christian Fellowship on May 30, 2007 during my first visit to the church on invitation from the senior pastor, whom doubled as my immediate supervisor at the time. It was in passing. Officially, I came across the sound booth 2 ½ weeks later, when one of my first friends in Japan—a guy named LeTray Womble—invited me to hang out with him in the sound booth during a Sunday service. He showed me everything he did and that’s how I came to get familiar with the sound booth and the equipment.
What it meant to me then? Not too long after returning from the deployment to Iraq, the senior pastor kinda volun-told me to take over in the sound booth. I didn’t really have any objections. Seeing and hearing the service was different in the booth. I particularly enjoyed all of the sound cues I got from staff up front and all of the little things people were saying in their mics on the low. I actually craved the pressure of putting on a good show as far as the sound was concerned. When we added a projector screen in the Summer of 2008, I got a chance to have some control on what audio and visual before service. I liked it. It was a great time and I felt like I was serving the Lord.
What it means to me now? I haven’t stepped into a sound booth of any kind since leaving FCF in May 2010. All of the churches I’ve attended since had sound teams and I never really got a comfortable feel for their operations so I opted not to volunteer. I’m pretty sure my career in sound operations for church services is done but I’m still fond of the time I had back in Japan, running sound at FCF.