funk Funk is an American music genre that originated in the late 1960s when African American musicians blended soul music, soul jazz and R&B into a rhythmic, danceable new form of music. Funk de-emphasizes melody and harmony and brings a strong rhythmic groove of electric bass and drums to the foreground. Funk songs are often based on an extended vamp on a single chord, distinguishing it from R&B and soul songs centered around chord progressions.
Like much African-inspired music, funk typically consists of a complex groove with rhythm instruments such as electric guitar, electric bass, Hammond organ, and drums playing interlocking rhythms. Funk bands sometimes have a horn section of several saxophones, trumpets, and in some cases, a trombone, which plays rhythmic "hits" or "stabs".
Many of the most famous bands in the genre also played disco and soul extensively. Funk music was a major influence on the development of disco music, and funk samples were present in most styles of house music and early hip hop music. It is also the main influence of go-go.