evening all.

im looking for some pointers on getting a good funk piano technique down. as usual there's been some great help offered here when i asked for tips on how to approach playing like stevie wonder but he's not the only funk player around...
i've looked on youtube and there's an excellent tutorial based around herbie hancock's chameleon. i've also searched ljp and it seems that there is no printed material on funk piano that is above beginner level.
looking on you tube and trying to follow various people playing at 100mph i'd say that a lot of fourths were involved, with minor pentatonics and occasional blues runs.
does anyone else have any tips on funky piano playing ? they'd be appreciated.
thanks. shaun
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hi shaun, do you have any musicians/recordings in your mind when you're talking about funk?  there are so many different levels of funk playing, different styles, etc, that it will help to know what you're looking to focus on.
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hi scot - and thanks very much for responding to this topic.

ok i'd primarily like to work on this piece..


i've been going through this piece and would appreciate any tips on transcribing it as well as observations on what he's doing - what scales he uses, what devices (i think he uses a few 4th intervals in his right hand) but most important (and elusive) how he gets that 'feel'. even using transcribe is not that easy - as the backing track 'muffles' the sound so its harder to pick out notes.
as well as this i've looked for funk piano playing on you tube and there is a tutorial on herbie hancock's 'chameleon' that i'm about to start working on. if you (or anyone else) has any good excercises on improving interplay between the left and right hands i'd like to know of them.

as ever - help on the first video mentioned (jd73 plays the nord electro 3) would be appreciated.

for this d7 jam, try using some 1st inversion minor chords.  for example bm - am (all over the d7 groove of course)  the bm (df#a) forms a d6 and the am (cea) creates a d9.  that might get you started.  the rest you'll get from listening and experimenting
well that d6 would actually create a d13 if it's over a d7
i wish i could edit my typos and overly quick responses (too much coffee)  i should have said the bm creates a d13....jeesh
the funk thing isn't really my forte, but you might also want to check out some youtube lessons posted by a guy called jonathan wilson - if you follow the lessons, he breaks down a fairly advanced funk groove into its constituent parts.  here is the first clip:


by the end of the lessons you end up with this:


one point about right/left hand co-ordination, the underlining feel of the kind of keyboard grooves in the video you posted is a triplet feel with the lh playing two notes to one rh chord for each triplet.  they don't really co-ordinate as such as they aren't playing rhythmically different things against each other and don't play together very often.

it may help to think of a funk groove as one 'line' split across the hands rather than conceiving it as a bassline under chords as you may when playing jazz.

hope this helps.

ps lol@dr whack - i think it's clearly not enough coffee!  i'd like to make it clear on the good dr's behalf that regardless of whether the chord is bm, d6, d7 or d13 it does not have an a# in it! rotflmao
pour yourself a cup dr. barry.  i didn't type a# - you did lol - but i did intend to type df#a instead of df#b - dohp!! :)
i can't even get my corrections correct!!  i hope by now everyone know what was intended after sifting through the labyrinth of mistakes and corrections!
this is one funky thread:)
ha ha! oh dear, we truly suck!  if anyone needs me i'll be hanging with dr. whack over at www.learntoreadproperlybeforeyoupresspost.com
lol - we do mean well :)
lol dr whack and barry - you guys are great - with or without coffee :)

thanks ever so much for your contribution to this funkiest of threads - looks like i've got a lot to work on.

a bit more funkified shaun
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