Learn Funk Guitar
The methods of learning funk guitar are vastly different than just learning basic rock guitar. Everything from the strumming patterns, chords and solos has a very unique sound that fit into the funk genre.
The defining staple of funk music is the groove that is generated. If you listen to any James Brown song you can distinctly hear the groove created by the bass and the guitar.
As stated earlier, playing funk music on the guitar has it's own unique sound and this sound is generated from the types of chords that are played with it. Most funk songs don't really use major chords or bar chords that are associated with traditional rock music. When you learn funk music you will see that chords such as minor chords, dominant 7th chords and 9th chords.
Here is a diagram of a D9 Chord with the root at the D note on the 5th fret. Check out the sound clips to check out the different funk sounds.
In addition to these chord types, the actual playing and picking of these chords are very unique. A lot of funk guitar players only play the top three strings associated with these chords to give it that distinct funky sound.
The Wah Pedal And Funk Guitar
The use of the Wah Pedal is also used frequently in funk music. The Wah Pedal combined with a strong bass line can give a great groove that is the hallmark of funk music. Check out any George Clinton music to hear this effect. The are many different types of wah pedals and the best known ones are Crybaby, Vox and Morley