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Chord Splitting (Guitar Lesson)

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Mark Lettieri

Chord Splitting

We're still working in the double track universe in lesson 22. In this lesson Mark discusses taking a large chord and breaking its sonic parts into two, which are then played by different guitars.

Taught by Mark Lettieri in Mark Lettieri Guitar Method and Master Course seriesLength: 18:05Difficulty: 3.0 of 5


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Mark Lettieri Guitar Method and Master Course

Found in our Beginner Lesson Sets

Three time Grammy award winning guitarist, Mark Lettieri shares his concepts, techniques and inspirations for playing in his style. This course will cover rhythm, lead, time feel and composition.



Guitar Method with Mark LettieriLesson 1

Guitar Method with Mark Lettieri

Grammy award winner Mark Lettieri brings his jazz fusion and session chops to JamPlay in what he calls Mark Lettieri's guitar method. This master course is designed to teach you how Mark thinks, plays...

Length: 2:36 Difficulty: 0.0 Members Only
The 2 Chord: Simple Shape, Not So Simple SoundLesson 2

The 2 Chord: Simple Shape, Not So Simple Sound

The first module of Mark's lesson series is all about harmony, voicings and progressions. The first lesson in this module is on what Mark calls the "2" chord. More specifically, this is a chord that...

Length: 19:56 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Drawing Pictures: Scales as Chords - MajorLesson 3

Drawing Pictures: Scales as Chords - Major

Lesson 3 is all about visualizing a scale in a linear fashion, instead of as a box. Mark discusses and demonstrates how to draw chord shapes from scales and you'll apply this technique over a backing...

Length: 18:03 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Drawing Pictures: Scales as Chords - MinorLesson 4

Drawing Pictures: Scales as Chords - Minor

Lesson 4 picks up where you left off on lesson 3. This time you'll be looking at minor chords.

Length: 13:44 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Keep it Tight: Two Note Chords with PurposeLesson 5

Keep it Tight: Two Note Chords with Purpose

Sometimes when working in an ensemble, those big luscious chords just create mud in the mix. In lesson 5 Mark demonstrates and discusses how to use simple 2 and 3 note chord voicings in order to cut through...

Length: 14:22 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Point/CounterpointLesson 6

Point/Counterpoint

In lesson 6, Mark takes queues from gospel, modern jazz and classical harmony to demonstrate counterpoint and how to use it to navigate a chord progression.

Length: 19:25 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
To B or Not to B: Pivoting Shapes off the B StringLesson 7

To B or Not to B: Pivoting Shapes off the B String

Using a single string and a single note, it's possible to build different types of progressions with different shapes. In lesson 7, Mark shows you how!

Length: 18:02 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Soulful Shapes and Extensions 1Lesson 8

Soulful Shapes and Extensions 1

Starting to round out this first module, Mark takes a look at soulful sounding triad shapes that can be used with R&B and Pop recordings.

Length: 15:05 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Soulful Shapes and Extensions 2Lesson 9

Soulful Shapes and Extensions 2

Lesson 9 expands on the concepts taught in the previous lesson.

Length: 14:52 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Muting and Ghost-NotesLesson 10

Muting and Ghost-Notes

Lesson 10 starts the second module of this course. Called "Groove, Rhythm, Technique and Time-Feel" this module covers everything about grooving and rhythms. To start off, Mark talks about ghosted notes...

Length: 20:41 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
One at a Time: Single Note GrooveLesson 11

One at a Time: Single Note Groove

In lesson 11, it's time to start thinking about the tick-tack or stick rhythm. There are various names to this technique, but Mark breaks it down here to help with a funk groove.

Length: 22:10 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Up for the Downstroke: Clavinet PickingLesson 12

Up for the Downstroke: Clavinet Picking

Lesson 12 is all about super short staccato notes. So short in fact that they sometimes feel and sound like a clavinet.

Length: 15:42 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Off the One: 16ths and DisplacementLesson 13

Off the One: 16ths and Displacement

In lesson 13, Mark discusses and demonstrates displacing notes by a sixteenth. This is an often used rhythmic trick that helps create push and pull in a song or tune.

Length: 16:41 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Thumb Bass StyleLesson 14

Thumb Bass Style

In lesson 14 Mark debuts a thumb and fingerstyle technique used to create some separation in the bass and chords or melody.

Length: 16:59 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Hybrid Pick'd CompingLesson 15

Hybrid Pick'd Comping

Similar to the thumb bass style previously learned, this lesson is all about the country flare of Hybrid Picking.

Length: 16:11 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Feel Shifting and SwingLesson 16

Feel Shifting and Swing

Music doesn't always correlate directly with it's many parts. Often you may shift styles and feels over various parts of a song. In this lesson Mark discusses playing swung over a straight feel and also...

Length: 18:45 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
The Sample: Muted Chords and HipHop RakesLesson 17

The Sample: Muted Chords and HipHop Rakes

Playing off some of the techniques already discussed, Mark breaks down a technique where you can get an R&B "sample" type sound from the guitar. This will be useful when playing anything with a soul or...

Length: 18:10 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Groove Formulas 1: Riffs with Chordal PunctuationLesson 18

Groove Formulas 1: Riffs with Chordal Punctuation

Lesson 18 starts the next module in this course. This module covers groove construction, part arranging and composition ideas. To start off with, Mark introduces the idea of punctuation and grammar to...

Length: 15:58 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Groove Formulas 2: Chords with Riff PunctuationLesson 19

Groove Formulas 2: Chords with Riff Punctuation

In lesson 19, Mark reverses the ideas from the previous lesson. You'll be thinking about riff vocabulary from a different angle.

Length: 14:56 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Stacking Chord Shapes 1: Groove ShapesLesson 20

Stacking Chord Shapes 1: Groove Shapes

Lesson 20 is all about double tracking. Specifically tracking stereo guitar parts that are similar or identical.

Length: 24:45 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Stacking Chord Shapes 2: Ambient/Textural ShapesLesson 21

Stacking Chord Shapes 2: Ambient/Textural Shapes

Lesson 21 continues with the same ideas discussed in lesson 20. This time mark discusses making more ambient and textural sounds instead of basic double tracking.

Length: 17:10 Difficulty: 0.0 Members Only
Chord SplittingLesson 22

Chord Splitting

We're still working in the double track universe in lesson 22. In this lesson Mark discusses taking a large chord and breaking its sonic parts into two, which are then played by different guitars.

Length: 18:05 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Adding Melodies to ChordsLesson 23

Adding Melodies to Chords

In lesson 23, Mark discusses composition when you have a starting foundation based off of a chord progression.

Length: 15:10 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Adding Chords to MelodiesLesson 24

Adding Chords to Melodies

Lesson 24 is the reverse of lesson 23. Mark discusses how to add chords and progressions to your composition if you already have a melody.

Length: 17:41 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Creating Chord Progressions with the Interval SystemLesson 25

Creating Chord Progressions with the Interval System

What if you are trying to compose, but you don't have...anything at all? Mark discusses and demonstrates a handy way of creating a chord progression by using a single note and using varying intervals.

Length: 14:30 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Singing and RappingLesson 26

Singing and Rapping

Lesson 26 starts the next module in Mark Lettieri's course. This one titled "Soloing, Improvisation and Specialized Techniques" will guide you through aspects of creating meaningful solos as well as concepts...

Length: 18:29 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Grammatical Soloing: Chord Punctuation in Lead LinesLesson 27

Grammatical Soloing: Chord Punctuation in Lead Lines

Solos don't always have to be about single note lines. In lesson 27 Mark discusses the aspect of chord punctuation to add harmony to your solos.

Length: 18:22 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Linear Two Note GroupingsLesson 28

Linear Two Note Groupings

Mark helps you "get outside the box" by exploring linear scales up and down the neck. By using two adjacent strings, you can create some interesting intervalic chord groupings to add to your playing.

Length: 20:30 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Out Stuff: The Funky Flat 5Lesson 29

Out Stuff: The Funky Flat 5

Lesson 29 is all about getting funky with chromaticism. Mark discusses the use of the flatted five in blues and rock phrasing and how it interacts with tonality.

Length: 18:07 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Out Stuff: Altered Scale Dominant and Minor BluesLesson 30

Out Stuff: Altered Scale Dominant and Minor Blues

In lesson 30 Mark explores the half-whole diminished scale, commonly referred to as the "altered scale." He discusses and demonstrates how he uses it to color his playing.

Length: 18:49 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
The Blur: Bend/Slur Hybrid TechniqueLesson 31

The Blur: Bend/Slur Hybrid Technique

In lesson 31 mark introduces a bend and slur technique that he uses to give a bit more spice to a simple bent note by adding a slide effect.

Length: 16:11 Difficulty: 3.5 Members Only
The Pitch Bend: Micro-bends for ChromaticismLesson 32

The Pitch Bend: Micro-bends for Chromaticism

Lesson 32 is all about emulating the pitch bend effect commonly used by keyboard players. Mark discusses the technique and demonstrates it's uses.

Length: 19:34 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Groovy Legato PivotingLesson 33

Groovy Legato Pivoting

To close out his series, Mark offers up his take on legato playing that uses a barred finger to allow additional hammer-ons and pull-offs on adjacent strings.

Length: 18:35 Difficulty: 3.5 Members Only
Mark Lettieri

About Mark Lettieri View Full Biography

Mark Lettieri is a guitarist, composer, producer, and instructor based in Fort Worth, TX. Proficient in a multitude of styles, he records and performs in virtually every genre of popular music with both independent and major-label artists. He also composes and produces original instrumental music under his own name.

Born in the San Francisco Bay Area, Lettieri came to Texas via Texas Christian University (TCU), studying advertising and public relations, and competing in track and field. A passionate guitarist since middle school, he began his music career in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex area upon graduating from TCU.



Mark Lettieri is a guitarist, composer, producer, and instructor based in Fort Worth, TX. Proficient in a multitude of styles, he records and performs in virtually every genre of popular music with both independent and major-label artists. He also composes and produces original instrumental music under his own name.

Born in the San Francisco Bay Area, Lettieri came to Texas via Texas Christian University (TCU), studying advertising and public relations, and competing in track and field. A passionate guitarist since middle school, he began his music career in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex area upon graduating from TCU.

Playing in the vibrant Metroplex gospel and R&B scene led Lettieri to join jazz/world group Snarky Puppy in 2008, where he contributes as guitarist, as well as arranger and composer. His work with group has resulted in three GRAMMY Awards: Best R&B Performance for "Something" feat. Lalah Hathaway in 2014, and Best Contemporary Instrumental Album (Sylva in 2016, and Culcha Vulcha in 2017). Snarky Puppy tours constantly, having performed on every continent except Antarctica.

Outside of Snarky Puppy, Lettieri has released five albums as a leader: Knows (2011), Futurefun (2013), Spark and Echo (2016, #2 on iTunes Jazz and #11 on Billboard Jazz charts) Deep: The Baritone Sessions in (2019, #21 on Billboard Jazz), and most recently, Things of That Nature (2019, #1 on iTunes Jazz). Due in large part to Lettieri’s vibrant social media presence, these records have created a sizable buzz among fans of instrumental music worldwide. He performs this music live with the Mark Lettieri Trio, featuring Wes Stephenson (Funky Knuckles) on bass and Jason “JT” Thomas (Snarky Puppy, Forq) on drums.

In 2018, Lettieri joined up with Vulpeck spin-off group The Fearless Flyers, featuring Cory Wong and Joe Dart of Vulfpeck on guitar and bass respectively, and drummer Nate Smith (Chris Potter, Pat Metheny). The quartet has released two EPs, The Fearless Flyers in 2018, and The Fearless Flyers II in 2019.

As an in-demand session guitarist and touring sideman, Lettieri has logged miles with neo-soul icon Erykah Badu, gospel singer Anthony Evans, and American Idol: Season 11 winner Phillip Phillips. He's also performed with a myriad of other artists, including Nelly, Anthony Evans, Chrisette Michele, Myron Butler, N'dambi, Bilal, and even comedians Dave Chappelle and Harry Shearer.

Recent recording work includes David Crosby, 50 Cent, Snoop Dogg, Eminem, Adam Levine, Kirk Franklin, Fred Hammond, Tori Kelly, Ledisi, Tamela Mann, Eric Roberson, Lecrae, Lupe Fiasco, Keyshia Cole, Xzibit, as well as numerous radio and television jingles. Lettieri is also a member of SKP, a production collective led by GRAMMY Award-winning producer Symbolyc One (Kanye West, Beyonce).

He can also be seen on television, in the house band for the Marcus & Joni Show, a Christian morning talk/variety show broadcast in over 200 countries Daystar Television Network.

Lastly, Lettieri serves as a clinician and gear demonstrator, often on behalf of companies he endorses; namely J. Rockett Audio Designs, Supro, Grosh, Collings, Paul Reed Smith, Jim Dunlop, and TC Electronic.

He resides with his wife, daughter, and two cats.

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