music: Cory Wong, rhythm guitar ace

YouTube recommended Vulfpeck to me, mid-West funky players with a killer bassist Joe Dart, but a bit too whitey-tighty. They occasionally play with rhythm guitarist Cory Wong, who is just great. The love child of Nile Rodgers, Prince, John Mayer, and an unnamed percussionist.

In the opening to “Companion Pass” he unleashes a machine gun triplet chickata-chickita-chickita which had every other guitarist going back to school to learn how he does it[*]. Video below (stick around for his hallway meeting with ZZ Top’s guitarist) or on his new album Motivational Music For The Syncopated Soul.

His home-town return concert Live in Mpls is a lot of fun, stuffed with music in-jokes. In the middle of the middle song in the show (“Frogville // Airplane Mode”), he plays the greatest rhythm guitar solo break I’ve heard this millennium. It actually starts at 50:28 but it’s worth hearing the weak instrumental before it just for “Alright Kev, let’s show them we went to music school.”

I bought a VIP pass to see him on tour to meet in person before the show, can’t wait!

Vulfpeck’s best song, “It Gets Funkier”, is up to version IV (with Cory Wong), video below or on the album Hillclimber. Someone made a video tracking its evolution and BPM increase.

* Cory Wong slows and steps through “The Wong Triplet Rhythm Porcaro Paul Jackson Jr. Ripoff Lick” in this lesson, how hard can it be 🙂 You know there’s some kid watching who is going to play it twice as fast while solving a Rubik’s cube and playing Rock Band drums on hardest difficulty with his feet.

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