Welcome back! In this article I wanna help you expand your rhythm guitar library; keep reading,
you are gonna like what is coming.
I think Funk is one of the most rich genres out there; the grooves we learn from funk, the whole
vibe and structure is just full of rhythms and patterns. If you wanna play funk you will most
definitely have to play 16th notes and learn how to move your wrist. Funk rhythms are
oftentimes a combination of fast but yet groovy patterns with syncopations and anticipations.
For the most part, and I would actually say most of the time, we combine open notes with muted
notes; If it makes you dance, it’s funk.
I wanna show a really cool modern funk rhythm that can be applied to different genres like Pop,
R&B and EDM music. It is a combination of 16th notes, 8th notes with anticipations and muted
notes. It is composed in E minor so you can use the E Minor Pentatonic scale if you wanna jam
over it. It goes like this:
The chords are obviously Em, D and C. If you are just starting out, I would recommend you to
play it at a slower tempo, like 70bpm. I originally made this rhythm to be played at 128bpm,
which is a very common tempo in Pop.
Using the same rhythm and chords, you can alter it a little bit without losing its essence, like this:
We are basically delaying the first chords and dragging the rest of the chords a bit later as we
go on. The rhythm is almost the same, we just moved everything a bit further.
Another thing you can totally do is invert the rhythm pattern; for instance, you could send the
16th notes to the end of the bar like this:
By doing this you preserve the essence but change it a little so it’s not boring. As I have explained before, I recommend you use an alternate picking technique with these type of rhythms. Just keep your wrist moving at the speed of a 16th note, even if you are not playing all those notes; trust me, it will make any rhythm pattern way easier to play.
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