My name is Ryan Tapert, I’m 30 years old and I live in the beautiful PNW. Im married to the love of my life Signe, and I have an amazing song named Anakin. I have been involved in local church ministry for most of my life, but actively pursuing it with a passion for about 15 years.
I grew up in a small town called Snohomish, WA, about 30 minutes north of Seattle. My parents are both hard-working people, who both share a passion for music and the Lord, so naturally I grew up in the church and on the worship team. From a young age, I began taking piano lessons from my mom, which turned into drum lessons from my dad. I took private lessons in both over the years but by the time middle school rolled around, I leaned heavily towards the drums.
We went to church in the neighboring town, but when that church decided to plant a new church in our home town, it was a no brainer for our family to be one of the first families to sign up to join the team. My parents both lead worship and when the church finally had the funds to purchase their own land, and build their own building, my dad, being a carpenter, not only helped build the church physically, but he also helped installed all the audio, lighting and visual gear as well. This is where I got my first taste of serving in ministry. My dad would take me with him early every Sunday morning, hot chocolate in hand, to help set up the stage for the band.
After weeks and weeks of begging him, he eventually let me sit in on drums one Sunday. Although I wasn’t the sharpest tool in the shed when it came to my craft at the time, I knew this was something I wanted and needed to be apart of for the rest of my life moving forward. The opportunity to serve alongside my dad while leading other people in worship of our creator ignited something within me that I could not resist. The passion to create ministry that doesn’t suck was born.
In middle & high school I joined every music group possible at school. Jazz band, marching band, wind ensemble, jazz choir, pep band, concert choir and even a barbershop quartet. Yes that’s right, a barbershop quartet. I wanted to soak up every opportunity to improve my craft on the drums, with my voice and as a overall musician. My family also ended up going back to our old home church, who planted the one we had been at for the past decade or so, right as they were building a brand new 1500 person, state of the art worship center. A new creative arts pastor had just been hired and I just knew I needed to be apart of what was going on here. I continued to play most Sunday mornings, and every Sunday night for youth group. During my senior year, I had the privilege of auditioning and accepting the drum chair in the touring/recording, award-winning vocal jazz ensemble from Edmonds Community College, Soundsation. I toured with them all over the west coast and Europe playing many schools and festivals for 2 years, as well as recording on two of their yearly albums.
When my time at the college was finished, I found out about a Seattle local band by the name of This Providence that was looking for a new drummer. I sent them a message on MySpace, yes this was back in 2005, got an audition and the next thing I knew, we were playing sold out local shows. 6 months later we signed a record deal with Fueled By Ramen Records, at the time, home of Fall Out Boy, Paramore, Panic! at the Disco, Gym Class Heros and many more. This began a whirlwind of non-stop touring for 2 years, as well a releasing our debut album for the label.
In 2007, I stepped away from the band and spent some time at home, just serving on the worship team at my home church. I started a new local band with some friends called Sight vs. Sound. We played a lot locally, recorded a few EP’s and did a couple of west coast tours, but a few years in, I found myself in the same place, super busy, doing what I thought was going to bring me joy, and instead I felt empty. I was just feeding myself with what I thought I needed. Fame.
In 2009, a job opened up at my home church in the creative arts department, they were looking for an admin to help support the worship pastor and creative arts pastor. I thought to myself, this is it! I can do the things I love to do from being in bands, playing music and doing tech, but the end result is to help spread the gospel and the name of Jesus, instead of my own. I jumped at the chance and accepted the job. This first taste of full-time ministry as a profession helped me grow in so many areas of my life. In fact, I ended up marrying the daughter of our worship pastor, so now he’s my father in law! The biggest thing I can now take away from all the time and effort that goes into ministry, is that is all about PEOPLE. Creating and investing in relationships.
The past 8 years have brought me through 6 different churches, of all different shapes, sizes and denominations, with two different stops at two different bible colleges. I’ve experienced the highest of highs, and some of the lowest of my lows, I’ve created life long friendships and lost a few others along the way, but most importantly, through all of it, the goal has remained the same, to love PEOPLE. I’m so grateful for all of my experiences, as they have played a significant role in shaping me into who I am today.
This brings us to 2017, and the beginning of this new adventure. For the first time in a long time, I find myself not on staff at a church, but instead just entering a season of serving my church, in whatever direction God calls me. This has freed up my schedule a bit so I have decided to devote my time into creating a resource for other people in all forms of ministry. Each week I’ll be inviting a friend of mine, that I have had the opportunity to serve alongside in ministry, to join me for a discussion on a wide array of topics. From teaching and preaching, to planning and producing, from youth ministry to worship & tech, to social media and communications, and more. The goal is to hit every aspect of ministry and to give you practical and help tips on how to make it NOT SUCK! Far too many times have I gone to a church and seen things that can be done so much better. We want to give God and his people, THE BEST, because they deserve it.
So please join with me as we create a community of believers who desire to be better at what they do, for the sake of PEOPLE.
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