All Funked Up

City of Bath College

City of Bath College

This post is for my students at the City of Bath College.

Some important elements of funk guitar playing:

  • Syncopated sixteenth note rhythms w/groove and feel
  • Use of major, minor and dominant 7, 9, 11 and 13 chords
  • LH muting and dampening
  • RH chucking (for effect, do not over use)
  • Use of effects – Wah Wah and Envelope Filters

You can download the suggested chord voicing sheet for the two chord improvisation sections found in the Rockschool Grade 5 piece ‘All Funked Up’ here –> All Funked Up (Chord Improv Suggestions).pdf

Be sure to check out some of these great funk guitarists:

  • Jimmy Nolan (James Brown)
  • Nile Rodgers (Chic)
  • Leo Nocentelli (Meters)
  • Steve Cropper (Booker T)
  • Melvin Raglin (Temptations/Marvin Gaye)

Check out this awesome live version of Nile Rodger performing Le Freak with Chic.

…and footage of James Brown performing a medley of I Feel Good and Sex Machine live in the studio.

About Richard Perkins

Richard Perkins is the founder of Bath Guitar School and has worked for the International Guitar Foundation, Brit Awards, Rockschool, B&NES Council, Mid Somerset Festival, Bath Music Plus, and appeared on BBC and ITV television and radio programming as well as being featured in Guitar Techniques, Total Guitar, Venue, Bath Life magazines and the Bath Chronicle newspaper. Richard is a graduate of the Commercial Music degree programme at Bath Spa University and has a HND in Popular Music from Oxford College.
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