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Funk creates an intense groove by using strong bass guitar riffs and bass lines. Funk was built on Motown recordings, which put bassists such as James Jamerson to the forefront. Like Motown recordings, funk songs used bass lines as the centerpiece of songs. Notable funk bassists include Bootsy Collins, Bernard Edwards, George Porter, Jr., Louis Johnson and Larry Graham of Sly & the Family Stone. Graham is generally credited with inventing the percussive "slap bass technique." Slap bass' mixture of thumb-slapped low notes and finger "popped" high notes allowed the bass to have a drum-like rhythmic role, which became a distinctive element of funk. Some of the best known and most skillful soloists in funk have jazz backgrounds.





Funk is an American musical style that originated in the mid- to late-1960s when African American musicians blended soul music, soul jazz and R&B into a rhythmic, danceable new form of music. Funk de-emphasizes melody and harmony, and brings a strong rhythmic groove of electric bass and drums to the foreground. Unlike R&B and soul songs, which had many chord changes, funk songs are often based on an extended vamp on a single chord.





The word "funk", once defined in dictionaries as body odor or the smell of sexual intercourse, commonly was regarded as coarse or indecent. African-American musicians originally applied "funk" to music with a slow, mellow groove, then later with a hard-driving, insistent rhythm because of the word's association with sexual intercourse. This early form of the music set the pattern for later musicians. The music was slow, sexy, loose, riff-oriented and danceable. Funky typically described these qualities. In jam sessions, musicians would encourage one another to "get down" by telling one another, "Now, put some stank ("stink"/funk) on it!" At least as early as 1907, jazz songs carried titles such as Buddy Bolden's "Funky Butt." In the mid-1950s Little Richard and his saxophone-studded road band were the first to inject funk in the Rock n Roll beat, according to James Brown and others.



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