BOOTSY COLLINS PUT THE BASS IN MODERN MUSIC. His Funk University aims to keep it there, and he has enlisted the most legendary bass players alive to help him for Year Two, commencing today. British bassist/songwriter/vocalist Jack Bruce made history alongside famed guitarist Eric Clapton as one third of Cream, the hugely successful and influential rock trio whose hits like “Sunshine Of Your Love” and “White Room” are classic rock staples, but those are only the songs that made him famous. It is his over 50 years spent charging into genres like blues, avant-garde, fusion, jazz and world music with acts like Manfred Mann, John Mayall & The Bluesbreakers, Frank Zappa, the Mahavishnu Orchestra, Peter Frampton and many more that has made him one of the world’s most respected musicians. Today he takes his place as a Funk U professor alongside fellow Year Two additions Stanley Clarke, Larry Graham of Sly & The Family Stone, Verdine White of Earth Wind & Fire, upright bass master Ron Carter and Hansford Rowe. They join Funk U Year One professors Les Claypool of Primus, Meshell Ndegeocello, Victor Wooten, John B. Williams, Beyonce bassist Divinity Roxx, Dennis Chambers, Thee Ram Jam, Frankie “Kash” Waddy, Bakithi Kumalo, P-Nut of 311, Blackbyrd McKnight, Public Enemy bassist Brian Hardgroove and Billy Bass.
If your stereo has a bass setting – and it almost certainly does – thank Bootsy Collins. From his work with James Brown and Parliament/Funkadelic to Deee-Lite’s “Groove Is In The Heart” all the way to his new album Tha Funk Capitol Of The World, the world has been a brighter, funkier place since the Rock & Roll Hall of Famer stepped into a world of treble and gave it some low end. Committed to music education, Collins founded the Bootsy Collins Foundation, its main goal to provide “an instrument for every child”. Now part of the Foundation, the Funk University is another manifestation of that same vision: a world where the gift of music is respected, preserved and passed on. To that end, Funk U is offering scholarships for financially challenged funkateers courtesy of exclusive sponsors DR Strings, Warwick, AKG and Gig FX, as well as savings for purchasing six months at a time.
For $29.99 a month, Funk U students get access to the ‘virtual campus’ at thefunkuniversity.com, where original lessons and tutorials geared to beginners, intermediate and advanced players along with lectures about the music industry and recording will be available, all on-demand to fit the busiest of schedules. From exercises on slapping from the players who created the technique, all the way to no-holds-barred observations on what it takes to ‘make it’ from the guys who actually did, Funk U compresses decades of experience into hour upon hour of invaluable tutelage. Staff reviews of students’ performance will be conducted periodically, and professors will also hold office hours to answer students’ questions. In addition to a wealth of brand new content, students will also have access to all Year One material. By Year Two’s end, a record will be completed featuring axework from Funk U’s sharpest students. Funk University is produced by SceneFour, the notorious L.A. creativity house responsible for projects with Al Gore’s Current TV, MTV-U, Nine Inch Nails, the RZA, Marilyn Manson, The Pixies, and Beck.
Funk U Year Two has a 1000 student cap on enrollment. Get exclusive updates and enroll at www.thefunkuniversity.com.