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Funk Bass

6 Chapters 52 Lessons Intermediate

About this course

In this course I teach you how to play forty killer funk bass grooves. Along the way, you will learn:

  • Essential funk bass techniques (alternate plucking, raking, rolling, hand shifts, hammer-ons. pull-offs, bends, slides, vibrato, slap, plectrum, Bernard Edwards chucking)
  • How to develop speed, accuracy, stamina, coordination, and strength
  • The scales, modes, and arpeggios commonly found in funk bass playing
  • How to make up your own lines
  • Playing with patterns
  • How to develop a rock-solid sense of rhythm and groove

If you want to learn how to play some cool funk bass lines then this is the course for you. However, it goes much deeper than that. By the end of this course, you will have learned so much more that will dramatically improve your bass playing.

Course Structure

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Introduction & Funk Bass Workbook 6 Lessons


This video introduces your teacher for the Funk Bass course, Dan Hawkins. Learn in what order to approach the lessons and how you can get the most out of the course.

Funk Listening Playlist

Immerse yourself into the world of funk bass playing with this twelve-and-a-half-hour-long playlist!

How To Use The Drum Loops

You will find a drum loop for each of the forty grooves. This video explains how to import them into your Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) and loop them around for practice.

Download The Funk Bass Workbook

All forty grooves taught in this course can be found in the downloadable workbook. As well as the grooves, you get all the scales, modes, and triads mapped out for you to memorise.

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Fingerstyle Grooves 10 Lessons

Groove 1 – The Funk Formula & Counting

Common notes used in funk and the importance of counting.

Groove 2 – Dorian, Alternate Plucking & Holding The Bass

The Dorian mode plus crucial bass techniques.

Groove 3 – Shuffle & Ghost Notes

Introduction to ghost notes plus the shuffle feel.

Groove 4 – Stamina & Consistency

How to develop stamina and consistency (plus strength and accuracy).

Groove 5 – Raking & Dominant Arpeggio

The raking technique plus dominant arpeggio.

Groove 6 – Hand Shifts

Developing hand shifting.

Groove 8 – Developing Coordination

How to get the hands working together.

Groove 9 – Natural Minor & Intervals

The Natural Minor scale and what intervals are.

Groove 10 – Counting Tip

A deeper dive into counting.

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Articulations 12 Lessons

Groove 11 – Slide

Learn the different bass slides.

Groove 12 – Hammer-On & Blues Scale

The hammer-on plus Blues Scale shapes.

Groove 13 – Pull-Off, Mixolydian

Mixolydian mode plus the pull-off.

Groove 14 – Plucking Hand Placement (Tone)

Coaxing different tones from your bass using your hands.

Groove 15 – The Shake & Slides

More slides plus the 'shake'.

Groove 16 – Left Hand Muting

Francis Rocco Prestia's left-hand muting technique.

Groove 17 – Playing Over Chord Progressions

What to do when you see a bunch of chords.

Groove 18 – Octaves

Octave shapes and how to use them.

Groove 19 – What Fingers To Use?

Different fingering systems and which one to use.

Groove 20 – Internalising Rhythms

How to work on your sense of rhythm and make it all automatic.

Groove 21 – Dotted 1/8th 1/16th Rhythm

A common and tricky funk rhythm.

Groove 22 – Double Stops

Not quite a chord but very useful nonetheless!

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Chucking/Plectrum 7 Lessons

Groove 23 – Chucking Technique

Bernard Edwards' remarkable 'chucking' technique explained.

Groove 24 – Crossing Strings

What to do when you move to different strings.

Groove 25 – Plectrum Technique

The basics of using a pick explained.

Groove 26 – Improvising Made Easy

Tips to make up your own lines.

Groove 27 – Ear Training, Funk Modes

Common modes found in funk bass playing plus how to strengthen your most important asset.

Groove 28 – Developing Dexterity

How to fly around the bass neck.

Groove 29 – Left Hand Pat

A cool rhythmic generation technique.

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Slap 11 Lessons

Groove 30 – Slap Technique

Basic slap techniques.

Groove 31 – Think Like A Drummer

How to think about rhythm.

Groove 32 – Slap Articulations

Add serious flair to your slap funk playing.

Groove 33 – Practice Tip

The most important skill of all...

Groove 34 – Hammer On From Nowhere

A technique Victor Wooten uses a lot to generate more notes.

Groove 36 – Power Chord

Root/5 played together creates a very powerful sound.

Groove 37 – Efficient Slap Technique

Economy of motion and how to refine your technique.

Groove 38 – Slap/Pop On Same String

Louis Johnson style technique.

Groove 39 – 1/16th Note Triplets

super fast machine gun-like rhythms.

Groove 40 – How To Make Up A Bass Line

More tips on how to quickly and easily compose bass lines.

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Outro/Bonus Lessons 6 Lessons

Funk Bass Gear Tips

Thoughts on strings, compressors, EQ, and basses.

Funk Bass Playlist

Here's the playlist again for you to listen to.

100 Funk Bass Grooves For Electric Bass

The book that the forty grooves came from.

Bonus Funk Lessons!

Lessons from my site featuring funk music and techniques.

Bonus Timing/Rhythm Lessons

Develop rock-solid groove