Funk is a distinct style of music originated by African-Americans,
e.g., James Brown and his band members (especially Maceo and Melvin
Parker), and groups like The Meters. Funk best can be recognized by its
syncopated rhythms; thick bass line (often based on an "on the one"
beat); razor-sharp rhythm guitars; chanted or hollered vocals (as that
of Marva Whitney or the Bar-Kays); strong, rhythm-oriented horn
sections; prominent percussion; an upbeat attitude; African tones;
danceability; and strong jazz influences (e.g., as in the music of
Herbie Hancock, George Duke, Eddie Harris, and others).
Soul music is a combination of rhythm and blues and
gospel which began in the late 1950s in the United States. Rhythm and
blues (a term coined by music writer and record producer Jerry Wexler)
is itself a combination of blues and jazz, and arose in the 1940s as
small groups, often utilizing saxophones, built upon the blues
tradition. Soul music is differentiated by its use of gospel-music
devices, its greater emphasis on vocalists, and its merging of
religious and secular themes.