How to Play “Uptown Funk” on Bass

This article is a collaborative effort, crafted and edited by a team of dedicated professionals.

Contributors: Andranick Tanguiane, Fred Lerdahl,


A step-by-step guide on how to play the catchy bass line to Bruno Mars’ “Uptown Funk.”

Choose the right bass

The first step in learning how to play “Uptown Funk” on bass is to choose the right bass. The best bass for this song is a fretless electric bass. This type of bass will give you the best sound for the style of music. If you do not have a fretless electric bass, you can use a standard electric bass or an acoustic bass.

Learn the notes

“Uptown Funk” is a song by Mark Ronson featuring Bruno Mars. It was released as a single in 2014 and achieved massive commercial success, spending 14 weeks at the top of the Billboard Hot 100 chart and becoming one of the best-selling singles of all time.

If you’re a bass player, you’re probably wondering how you can get in on the fun and play this catchy tune yourself. Luckily, “Uptown Funk” is a fairly simple song to play on bass, and in this article we’ll show you how.

The first step is to learn the notes that make up the melody of the song. For this we’ll be using a technique called tablature (or “tab” for short). Tablature is a way of representing music using numbers and symbols instead of standard notation. It’s very easy to read and is ideal for beginners.

Here’s the tab for the melody of “Uptown Funk”:


As you can see, each note is represented by a number. The numbers tell you which fret to press down with your left hand, and the vertical lines represent the strings on your bass guitar. The lowest string is the E string, so that’s where we start our melody.

Now that you know the notes, it’s time to start playing them in time with the song. Listen to “Uptown Funk” and try to feel the groove of the bassline. When you’re ready, start playing along with a metronome or drumbeat at a slow tempo, around 60 beats per minute (BPM). As you get comfortable with the groove, you can gradually increase the tempo until you’re playing at the same speed as Bruno Mars himself!

Find the groove

First and foremost, you need to find the groove of the song. “Uptown Funk” has a pretty pocket, so once you find that you can lay down the foundation for the whole song. You’ll feel the pocket by tapping your foot and letting your body feel the music. The best way to find the pocket is to practice with a metronome or drum machine so you can lock in with a click track. Playing with other musicians is also a great way to find the pocket. Once you’ve found it, you can start laying down the bass line.

Put it all together

Now that you know the basics of how to play “Uptown Funk” on bass, it’s time to put it all together. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you get started:

1. Start by practicing the basic groove with your right hand. Use your left hand to play the root note on the first beat of each measure.

2. once you have the groove down, try adding in the syncopated notes from the hook. Play them on the “and” of each beat.

3. Next, add in the chords from the verses. Play them on the first and third beats of each measure.

4. Finally, add in the bassline from the chorus. Play it on the first and third beats of each measure, but be sure to hit that low note on “Funk” (the fourth beat).

Similar Posts