Watch the Club 54: 1 online guitar lesson by Chris Buono from Guitar Cubed
Whip out the platforms and drop off the polyesters at the dry cleaner because at this weekend’s jam session you’re going disco, baby! Club 54 drops the ball on the dance floor with its upbeat hi-hat laden groove and slick i-vi-ii-V progression in F minor. What? Not an ABBA fan? Frankly, neither am I--there's way better disco that graced the 70’s. The point in throwing a jam such as Club 54 into Guitar Cubed is to further color your palette and having a lot of fun doing it! Looking back on Guitar Cubed this is not the first off-track style we’ve encountered. There was Sus Scrofa with its airy fusion-esque leanings and Granola with its combining of myriad approaches coming together to create a vibe all its own. Fun stuff, right? And, what could be more fun than totally rocking a I-IV-V as we did in Down and Dirty? Admittedly, there was an additional hidden agenda to take your attention away from some seemingly complex chord voicing arrangements and substitutions with a completely cheesy style such as disco. Rest assured, the explanations are in the breakdowns and you’ll be plenty prepared when/if you need to explain yourself as to why you’re making your friends do this!
Guitar 1 lays down the four-chord progression with a personal favorite approach for voicing extended minor chords by stacking 4ths and adding a 5th on top. This is the deal for the first three bars while something different all together is employed in the final bar. Rhythmically speaking the comping pattern in Guitar 1 is closely related to Sus Scrofa with its consecutive playing of 16th notes on every 1st beat of the measure. In Guitar 2 the Sus Scrofa similarities continue conceptually as a call and response scenario is in place. The difference here is Guitar 2 plays more chopped up 16th note grooves on the perfect 5th components from Guitar 1’s voicings. Keeping in line with Guitar 1 the final fourth bar breaks off the pattern of events and does something once again all together different, albeit in the pocket. The final Guitar 3 part of Guitar Cubed brings back the infamous solo (yeah, no third guitar part here, guys). BUT, not without a catch!
Note: Contrary to my professing in the video segment this was the first time in Guitar Cubed we encounter four changes, we now know that’s not the case as stated in the first paragraph. Sorry!