Unlike most pedals, the wah-wah isn’t just an effect - it’s actually an instrument unto itself, and when applied to a solid rhythm guitar part — especially a funky guitar part — the groove is undeniable.
In Carl Burnett's Wah Guitar Grooves, you’ll focus on learning how to "play" a wah-wah pedal properly to create a wide sonic palette of wah-wah rhythm guitar that you can use when covering popular tunes, jamming, or crafting wah-wah rhythm parts for your own original material.
"Across the ten wah-wah performance studies in this course, we’ll explore wah-wah effects like warbles, waves, cat cries, wah-wah Watson inspired waterfall tricks, and many other techniques and approaches. We’ll play over a variety of tracks I produced to help you take a session guitarists approach to craft wah-wah rhythm parts that really make the track groove.”
Bad Mother ”Throughout this course, I'll make many references to the grooves and the tracks that inspired my playing. For "Bad Mother", check out the epic playing of the late Charles "Skip" Pitts on this live version of The Theme From Shaft.”
Son of a Bad Mother ”Part of being serious about getting into playing any style is to look at its origins. Check out the documentary Wattstax featuring artists from Stax Records. The must listen is the performance by the Bar-Kays Son of Shaft.”
Who's Gonna Take the Blame Pt. 1 ”Before "Celebration", "Ladies Night", "Joanna" and many other of their pop hits, Kool and the Gang was playing FUNK. On their earlier recordings, there is a wealth of funky guitar playing by the late Charles Smith. I'm thankful to have seen him perform for me on the best funk wah tunes Who’s Gonna Take the Weight.”
Who's Gonna Take the Blame Pt. 2 ”This is a continuation of the funk which began in Part 1, but now kick it up a notch! What's being added is more syncopation and pedal action to accent the rhythm.”
True Love's Fire ”Barry White...what??? Well, check it out. The song, Love’s Theme has some great guitar parts, and with this course, I'd like you always think about the parts that drive the song and create a thread that holds the groove together. The wah rhythm is a bit different from what I played in that it's two 1/16 notes accenting on the downbeats. See if you can capture this feel as well. Also, check out the other guitar, how it propels the groove and has some very tasty fills, too.”
Papa Was Stoned ”Everybody will agree that the music of Motown has remained as cool today as it was back in the day. For this one, check out The Temptations classic, Papa Was a Rolling Stone with Wah Wah Watson on guitar. The sustained chords with the wah creating the rhythm to the soulful wah fills are simply perfect. In my example, you mostly tap the pedal to the beat. The trick comes with the 1/8 tap on the sustained chord in the second bar on beat 4. Check out Temps for further inspiration.”
Hang with Me ”Are you hip to Wah Wah Watson? If not, he was an iconic master of the wah. Simply add Maxwell's Urban Hang Suite to your library and check out all that's there. Though I didn't mention this is the video, the other essential listening is the Herbie Hancock tune co-written with Wah Wah, "Hang Up Your Hangups". This is a song I always have in my performances. The live version is killer (sounds like Wah Wah is using a phaser) and also has Ray Parker (yes, from Ghostbusters). Did you know about the funk he can lay down on guitar? This is perfect to show that the Wah doesn't make you funky...first you have to BE funky!”
Inner City Chill ”The idea with this track is to focus on holding and floating your chords while using the Wah to create a rhythm. Concentrate on 1/4 triplets. If you have a delay pedal with a tap tempo that is a great addition for adding space and texture. You'll hear how I use it to echo the percussive rhythm.”
Mojito ”Mojito is a song idea that came about while performing at a restaurant/bar that was known for their mojitos. The track was edited from my soon to be released Life Before MIDI III. I really love this groove, and wanted to share it with all of you to have some fun working on your performance ideas!”
Peculiar Cat ”We conclude with a shortened performance of a song from my first CD Life Before MIDI, "Peculiar Cat". Included is the full song! I give a tutorial and you can use the jam track to try all out all the ideas and concepts out. Crank up the gain and think about being a jungle cat when you create your sounds!”
Carl will explain and demonstrate all of the key concepts and approaches along the way. You’ll get standard notation and tabs for each of the performances. Plus, Carl includes all of the backing tracks for you to work with on your own. In addition, you’ll be able to loop or slow down any of the videos so that you can work with the lessons at your own pace.
Grab your guitar and wah-wah — let’s get funky with Carl Burnett!