Top Worship Songs in 6/8

Our favorites additions to a worship setlist

When building an engaging worship set, variety is your friend. Too many songs with the same tempo or feel can run together. One great way to add variety to your worship set is with a time signature change.

What is 6/8 time signature?

Time signature is a notational convention that specifies how many beats are counted in a single measure of a song. It consists of two numbers. The first number being the number of beats in a single measure and the second specifying which note value gets that count. For example, a song in 4/4 time is going to have four beats in a measure and a quarter note will get one beat. Worship songs in 6/8 have six beats per measure with an eighth note getting a full beat. 

How do I know if a worship song is in 6/8 time?

There are two ways to tell what time signature a song is in. The first is to simply look at the song notation. The time signature will appear directly to the right of the key signature with the beat number sitting above the note value. That means that 6/8 will appear as a six sitting above an eight.

The second way is to simply listen to the song and identify the count. All this fancy theory and notation talk just means that instead of the typical 4/4 count of 1,2,3,4...1,2,3,4, you count 1,2,3,4,5,6...1,2,3,4,5,6. When counting 6/8 there is often an emphasis on the 1 and the 4 beat. Try counting it out loud. ONE, two, three, FOUR, five, six. That emphasis on the one and four are what give 6/8 its unique musical feel.

What are some worship songs in 6/8 time?

The best way to understand 6/8 time is to actually play a few songs that use it. Worship Artistry has you covered in that department. Here are a few of our favorite worship songs in 6/8 time:

Good Good Father by Chris Tomlin: This is one of the easiest songs to hear the 6/8 emphasis on one and four. The acoustic guitar broadcasts it from the first measure.

Who You Say I Am by Hillsong Worship: This marriage of melody and rhythm highlight a unique feature of a 6/8 song. The the six count makes the instruments and tempo feel fast, but the lyrics are slow and singable. This can really work well in a 6/8 worship song.

Follow You Anywhere by Kristian Stanfill: This song kicks off with the rhythm right away so it's easy to identify the different feel. The marriage of big dynamic with medium tempo makes it a great song to kick off a worship set.

There Is A Cloud by Elevation Worship: Even without the drums at the beginning of this song, the electric guitar riff guides the timing and clearly identifies this as a 6/8 worship song.

Run To The Father by Cody Carnes: While this is one of our favorite songs in the song tutorial library, the lack of drums and sparse piano work at the beginning can make it a little tricky to identify the time signature. Listen to the vocal melody and see if you can count it out. If you can, it makes a great transition song in your worship set because the change is more subtle than one that kicks off with drums.

Time to Learn

These are just a sampling of our 6/8 song tutorial collection. Worship Artistry has a lesson library of over 500 worship song tutorials for guitar, bass, drums, keyboard and vocals that feature songs in 3/4, 4/4, 6/8 and some that even switch between them! You can try out a sample lesson or get 21 days free

Jason Houtsma is the co-founder and guitar teacher at Worship Artistry, where he is helping musicians of every level answer the call to worship with passion and confidence. Jason has been leading worship and writing music since he was 15 years old and currently serves as Worship Pastor for Mosaic Church in Bellingham, WA. He is husband to Alli and father to Bjorn and Asher.

Login to post comments