3 Free Guitar Lessons to Funk Up Your Rhythm Chops

3 Free Guitar Lessons to Funk Up Your Rhythm Chops

Any given funk tune relies on the rhythm chops of their guitar player – it’s their job to lock in with the drummer and bass player to drive the tune as well as keep the groove interesting and fresh. Mark Tuinstra will teach you how to do exactly that with his new TrueFire course, Funk Rhythm Guitar Guidebook. In these lessons taken from the course, he’ll take you through three performance studies that highlight successful funk rhythm playing with a band. Let’s get funky!

Colder Sweat: Performance

Download the tab, notation, and jam track for this funk rhythm lesson on TrueFire.

“Colder Sweat” is a blues of sorts that uses 9th and 13th chords. It has Jimmy Nolan’s signature sound in an uptempo James Brown funk groove.

6-9 Exploration: Performance

Download the tab, notation, and jam track for this funk rhythm lesson on TrueFire.

Here we’re exploring typical funk chords in a minor key. By using substitutions on different positions on the fretboard, we’ll create that typical Nile Rodgers sound. In the bridge, there’s a little riff that’s played in unison with the bass.

6-9 Exploration: Breakdown

Stevie in G: Performance

Download the tab, notation, and jam track for this funk rhythm lesson on TrueFire.

This is a 12/8 groove that is typically divided into 4 times 3. Here we’re inserting a different division of the beat by playing 3 times 4. It also has a minor 6th riff to spice things up.


There are sx more performance studies to help you dial in your rhythm playing in the full course on TrueFire. As always, each performance study comes with the tab, notation, and jam tracks required to practice on your own. Check it out and lock in to the rhythm!