January 2017

Getting the “Feeling”

The top-selling song of 2016 was by Justin Timberlake. Here’s how to play it.

Click on the thumbnail photos below and you’ll find basic “Can’t Stop the Feeling!” accompaniment charts for a standard Modern Band ensemble (guitar, keyboard, bass, drums).


A few notes about the symbols and terms here:  1) The C pentatonic scale is a five-note scale consisting of C, D, E, G, and A—in other words, it’s a major scale without the fourth (F) and seventh (B).  2) The guitar chord diagrams show how the chords should look on the fretboard. Their positions on the neck are indicated by the number to the left of the diagrams, which tell you what the lowest fret is. The numbers inside the black dots indicate which fingers of your fretting hand to use on which notes. 3) The Xs above the guitar and bass diagrams represent strings that shouldn’t be played, while the Os are strings that should be played open.  4) Near the top of the bass chart are two lines of tablature, which map out the four strings of the bass. The numbers on the lines stand for frets, so if you see an 8 on the bottom line, that means you should be playing on the 8th fret of the bass’ bottom (E) string. 5) The  “comping pattern” (“comping” is short for accompaniment) in the keyboard chart shows the different rhythms established by the left and right hands; the left hand (black) plays quarter notes, while the right hand (light gray) holds out its chords for one full measure each.

If you still have questions about what’s in these charts, ask your teacher.