Funk equipment ideas?

Discussion in 'Music, Theory, Tab and Such' started by Ralph124C41, Sep 21, 2018.

  1. Ralph124C41

    Ralph124C41 Squier-holic

    Feb 10, 2016
    A somewhat local funk/soul/whatever band has asked me to play guitar. I am really a classic rock bassist but I took a week to try to learn the guitar parts, and even a lead, to some funk(ish) songs and I think I was OK. The band has asked me to join ... although I've warned the members I am NOT a lead guitarist.

    Anyway, I need some thoughts on equipment. First Itried using my Bugera V22 and I added an auto wah. I already had a compressor. But then I thought about using my Fender Mustang III V2.0 and I downloaded some "funk" presets and then I crafted my own and I think I got the sound pretty good. So I'm thinking of just using this amp and we also have a p.a. that I can link the amp to.

    The Mustang has an auto wah setting and a standard wah ... but the latter really requires you to buy the expression pedal to produce the wah effect. I like the auto wah for rhythm but it's a little lacking for lead work so I'm thinking about buying some form of standard wah pedal. I already have both the 4-button and the 2-button footswitches.

    I am using one of my Strat copies so I think I'm OK on the guitar end.

    Is there any other equipment, particularly pedals, you folks think I need if I use the Mustang?

    Also any suggestions on setting the Mustang up for a good funk sound? I've tried virtually all of the user-defined presets and really nothing just sounds right to me.

    Btw, I tried playing funk on my Squier Bullet Mustang and that was a baaaaad idea. Really, really bad. I do think I can use my Squier Affinity Tele or some other single-coils as a backup guitar.
     
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  2. Davis Sharp

    Davis Sharp Squier-holic

    Jan 7, 2016
    Maryland, USA
    Play that funky music, white boy!
     
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  3. Ralph124C41

    Ralph124C41 Squier-holic

    Feb 10, 2016
    Yes, that song I can play ... but not the lead.
     
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  4. archetype

    archetype Squier-Meister

    431
    Oct 24, 2017
    Williamsville, NY USA
    The Mustang will get you closer to big, loud, and clean than the Bugera will. I'd base funk tone on the BF or '65 Twin voice. I don't know what guitar(s) you have, but traditional funk is usually built around the various tones available from the Stratocaster and ES-335/345/355, depending on whether you like your funk tone singlecoilish or humbuckerish. The goal is clean, defined top end with good note separation playing chords. If you need to go cheap, a late model Squier Bullet Strat with SSS pickups will get the job done after a proper setup.

    If you're just starting out with funk guitar, I'd forget about wah or pedals for a long while. Learn how to play funk, first, and don't mask your playing with anything. Listen to the guitar lines in James Brown's music before the mid-70s. No pedals... just funk. You'll go a lot, lot farther than you think just by learning to play solid, consistent funk rhythm, knowing where the beat is at all times, and becoming aware of where the singer and rest of the band is.
     
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  5. dtsreiuqs

    dtsreiuqs Squier-Meister

    427
    Oct 18, 2015
    France
    Funk & Soul ? Easy and pleasant to play...







    Any single coil guitar, a wah pedal, maybe a fuzz, and a Fender with reverb.

    But it's me, OK ? :D

    A+!
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2018
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  6. Ralph124C41

    Ralph124C41 Squier-holic

    Feb 10, 2016

    Yes, the two funk presets I used are based on a Fender Twin and I think a BF would also be appropriate. I have guitars similar to what you recommend.

    Yes I've been attempting for years to play funk, even before I got any pedals at all or maybe one or two I no longer use. I just wanted advice on a pedal ... or seven ... to help me improve my game.

    However I have to admit I don't think I will go on with the band. Just as we were closing I asked to play the bassist's P-Bass ... and I went into some walking blues and I just felt that I was "home." For me a guitar is something I play in my bedroom or maybe at a friend's informal jam but that a bass is made for when I play out before the public. For example, I've never played guitar at an open mic; the closest is a few times when I played in a church and even then I wished I was playing the bass.

    So, thanks anyway. I may change my mind ... but I may change my mind about changing my mind.
     
  7. Bell bottom slacks and a pair of platform shoes … just a thought :D. Sorry man, I'm of absolutely no help.
    Chees, Barrie.
     
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  8. archetype

    archetype Squier-Meister

    431
    Oct 24, 2017
    Williamsville, NY USA
    Cool. I'd keep playing funk at home, though. No pedals.
     
  9. Jmv668

    Jmv668 Squier-Nut

    Age:
    40
    597
    Feb 21, 2017
    Chile
    Afro hair and golden jacket can help
     
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  10. Ralph124C41

    Ralph124C41 Squier-holic

    Feb 10, 2016
    I think this may be the clincher for me. Remember when I described this project as a "funk/soul/whatever" band?

    Well after looking at the overall set list I find unfortunately that the "whatever" category includes quite a few disco songs. Yes. Disco.

    It's one thing to learn funk ... but how the heck do I learn to play the guitar to disco songs?

    I survived the Disco Era (or Disco Error). I don't want to go back there again.

    Disco. My, my, my.
     
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  11. mikesr1963

    mikesr1963 Squier-Nut

    Age:
    55
    951
    May 6, 2016
    Virginia
    What’s the set list?
     
  12. SquierTap

    SquierTap Squier-Meister

    Age:
    37
    346
    Jul 14, 2018
    Nashville, Tn
    First off, congrats on making the band!
    Now, I'm not a funk player, but IMHO I'd say this is a great opportunity to break out your Tele... That awesome single coil tele "twang" can be harnessed for funk really easily, and cut right through the band/mix... I think you're on the right track... A lil compression and a serviceable wah, and you're in there... If it was me, this would be a great chance to A: Buy a wah pedal you dig, and B: Spend a lil time learnin how to use it... And not just the "conventional" way... Autowahs are awesome, but with a dedicated wah pedal you have alot more control, and you can "****" it to get a world of new tones...
    I think the main thing with funk is to just HAVE FUN! And find your own voice... The conventional funk guitar sound has been done to DEATH... Think of everytime someone makes a risque remark; Bow chicka wow wow... Lol... But at the same time, hey, it works... Or people wouldn't still be doin it...
    I play a lot of reggae and it's the same way... A balance of "tried and true" and my own thing... But there's a space between "tried" and "tired" and that's where ya wanna be, my friend...
     
  13. SquierTap

    SquierTap Squier-Meister

    Age:
    37
    346
    Jul 14, 2018
    Nashville, Tn
    Lol! The thread censored me when I mentioned using "the positions on the wah between all the way up and all the way down"... I guess a better (and less risque) way to say it would be a "cocked wah" position... Lol...
     
  14. Ralph124C41

    Ralph124C41 Squier-holic

    Feb 10, 2016
    Yes I also tried my Squier Affinity Tele and it seemed pretty good for funk, but I still prefer the "quack" of the Strat that seems to also copy the "quack" of the wah. Yes the wah pedal would be best for lead work but I bought the auto wah because originally I was under the impression the band would just want me to play rhythm. However in my tryout I found they have changed some personnel and apparently they want me to play rhythm AND lead ... which I would never have tried to do if I had known it. In fact I would never have tried out for any band needing a lead guitar player because I certainly am not in that neighborhood ... maybe secondary leads or chord-based leads over some basic scales and some riffage ... but that would be it.

    And that was before I found out about the disco songs.

    However if I get another chance later to play funk ... but not lead ... I think I will be able to handle the chores.

    Btw, reggae is another form of music I like and I've failed miserly to play , both on guitar and on bass. I just don't have the groove for it I guess. So good for you!!
     
  15. archetype

    archetype Squier-Meister

    431
    Oct 24, 2017
    Williamsville, NY USA
    Disco is just R&B and funk, with the drummer playing the back beat on the high hat, instead of the snare. Just play R&B and funk, and let the rhythm section (and any horns) turn it into disco. Simple for you, as you don't play differently.

    Example: Low Down by Boz Scaggs. For most listeners, that's the first they'd heard of him and they thought he was a disco guy. He was a R&B guy, having played that and a broad range of styles all thrown together, for a decade before Low Down. That was just an R&B song that he turned into disco/pop just by adding a repeating flute riff and having the drummer hit the high hat, instead of the snare, on the 2 and 4.

    You're concentrating on what you think you can't do instead of what you can. Just learn to play clean, concise, rhythm without effects and you'll fit whatever that band plays: it works with funk, disco, pop, R&B, etc. Don't complicate anything. Just play and you'll sound fine.
     
  16. dtsreiuqs

    dtsreiuqs Squier-Meister

    427
    Oct 18, 2015
    France
    Funk & Soul... & Disco ? Easy and pleasant... And funny to play...

    Here there's a Tele and a White Falcon, and a bunch of SF Twins :


    Carlos Santana :cool: goes Disco with a Yamaha SG3000 and his usual Boogie MKI :


    Here the guitar leads are done through the famous trebly JEN Fuzz III (I had one and sold it :confused:). The backing rhythm guitar uses a Morley WVO :


    Earl Hooker playing Wah Wah and slide on his album called... FUNK (1969) :


    Maybe one of the best rhythm wah along with Theme from Shaft :


    OK...

    If you have the feeling, then any guitar should do it nicely (more or less). A part of the Funk/Soul/Disco arsenal is : phaser, wah, fuzz, tremolo - on request, of course...

    But it's me, OK ? :D

    A+!