Fine-tune your rhythm chops with this lesson on classic disco funk

Nile Rodgers
(Image credit: Dimitri Hakke/Getty Images)

A fierce funk movement that developed during the thriving nightclub scene of '70s America, disco funk is a much aligned – and misunderstood – genre, perhaps best represented by the infamous Studio 54 in Manhattan. 

Unlike earlier funk, this music was much more heavily produced, and more costly, too, with the addition of lush string sections and more complex arrangements. Here, I'll be delving into the styles of three of disco funk's most influential champions: Nile Rodgers, Claydes Charles Smith and Al MacKay.

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month**

Join now for unlimited access

US pricing $3.99 per month or $39.00 per year

UK pricing £2.99 per month or £29.00 per year 

Europe pricing €3.49 per month or €34.00 per year

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Prices from £2.99/$3.99/€3.49

Steve Allsworth

Steve is one of the UK’s most versatile guitar players and professional music educators. He has toured and played for the likes of Mica Paris, Lily Allen, Ronan Keating, Lulu, Westlife and Lianne Rimes. Between performing in the West End and recording as a busy session musician, Steve also regularly writes for Total Guitar and Guitar Techniques magazines. He’s also BIMM London’s Head of LPW (Live Performance Workshop) and one of its senior guitar specialists. He loves to share his knowledge and passion for playing and getting the best from guitarists, whatever the level.