Chord Alchemy with John

Genre and Style Guitar Course from John March

A different approach to harmonic applications on guitar and developing a modern chord vocabulary.

31 Lessons

Complete course with step-by-step lessons and practice examples.

Multi-Camera

Course filmed with 6 cameras for the perfect angles.

89% Appoval

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Tabs & Info

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Included

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Full Course Breakdown

John March, a long time student of the late Ted Greene and a self-proclaimed "chord addict", opens up a fresh way to view the guitar fretboard. A different way to think, introducing the idea of how chords work and how to develop a “vocabulary”.

Begin the Course
1

Bio and Series Introduction

Welcome to this fresh new look at understanding the guitar fretboard as a whole! John March, a long time student of the late Ted Greene, introduces himself and his guitar series.

6:23 Runtime

2.0 Difficulty

2

Simplicity & Exploration

Take a new look at the fretboard and learn where to find a voicing that works. There are techniques that simplify the fretboard and steps that can be taken to find the chord you are looking for.

11:32 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

View this Lesson
3

A Look at Dominant Chords

It's time to learn what makes up a dominant chord and understand what extensions are. John covers simple movements and his overall viewpoints on how to best apply dominant sounds.

10:20 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

4

Thinking About Colors

When applied to music, the term "color" usually refers to various extensions and alterations within chords. John demonstrates how he adds color to chords in order to change the overall tone and mood of a piece.

10:51 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

5

Understanding Inversions

What is an inversion and how does it generate chords? Well it's time for John to lend his talents and techniques to break this topic down in a very easy manner for anyone to understand.

11:21 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

6

Chord Vocabulary: Geometry vs Geography

With a quick recap of inversions, John now discusses geometry vs. geography on the guitar and how each factor is used to create a whole new harmonic vocabulary. Shifting registers and octave displacement are used to generate new voicings.

12:53 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

7

Find the Voices

John dives deeper into the topic of simple note movement. This lesson covers topics like shifting register, bass development, and finding the best way to create new chord options.

16:31 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

8

Taking It All a Step Further

Continuing on with chord voicings, John now demonstrates how to take what has been taught already to the next level. Some examples include how to play advanced jazz material over blues sounds.

17:13 Runtime

3.5 Difficulty

9

Relationships

John now provides more insight into the relationships between intervals and how the colors can vary depending on how the notes are used - whether in a full chord, small solo, or lick.

11:13 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

10

Chords: Dominant 7th

Now it is time for John to take the detailed concepts he has taught so far and apply them directly to certain chord shapes. This first "chord" lesson will touch on dominant 7th shapes.

13:17 Runtime

3.5 Difficulty

11

Part Two Introduction

John expands on his Chord Alchemy series with different concepts and practical applications to carry you further down the road of becoming a chord master! This video gives you a clue as to what you can expect in Chord Alchemy, Part 2.

4:47 Runtime

0.0 Difficulty

12

Application and Purpose

Kicking off part two of this series, John gives direction as to where we're headed, including looking at the four basic elements of music and choosing your own path moving forward.

15:40 Runtime

2.5 Difficulty

13

Neck Mapping

A big part of visualizing and committing these concepts to memory is doing the physical work of neck mapping. In this lesson John explains what that is and gives you your first neck mapping assignment!

11:07 Runtime

2.5 Difficulty

14

Alternate Fingerings

There's always a different way.... a different way to finger chords, that is! John opens us up to the idea of alternate fingerings in this lesson, and why you want to explore this path in your playing.

13:20 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

15

The Humble D Chord

In this lesson, John explores the D chord, taking the basic shape that we all learned early on in our playing, and twisting it into the coolest possible inversions and voicings!

13:18 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

16

Creating Chromatic Chord Scales

In this lesson John creates different sounds by exploring the intervallic relationship of notes to the root note of a chord.

12:26 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

17

Fundamentals of Practical Ear Training

Having a good ear is not just based on natural ability. There are steps you can take and exercises you can do to train your ear. In this lesson John gives you an exercise to start training yourself to recognize certain key intervals in music.

9:06 Runtime

2.5 Difficulty

18

The Value of a Single Note

Earlier, John explored moving higher notes in chords against a consistent root note. Now the opposite: moving the lower notes in a chord while keeping the higher notes consistent. This makes for some very colorful chord voicings!

9:52 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

19

String Groups

The way you group strings goes a long way to determining how colorful your chord voicings can be. Certain close intervallic colors can only be achieved through odd fingerings using "big stretches". John explores a number of these "big stretches" in this lesson.

11:47 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

20

Chromatic Triads Over Bass Notes

John shows us yet another great technique for generating options in your playing. Superimposing chromatic triads over the same bass note gives you chord tones that you might not have thought of otherwise!

9:03 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

21

Alternative Options for Generating Chords

Of course, all of this discussion and chord knowledge only comes together when using it in context. In this lesson, John explores what that means and how it can generate even more chordal options.

14:23 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

22

Chord Sequencing, Part 1

Taking the application process a step further, John now explores what we've learned so far in the context of chord sequences.

14:31 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

23

Chord Sequencing, Part 2

John continues applying our new found knowledge to chord sequences, this time using the I-Dominant-IV sequence.

11:38 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

24

Chord Sequencing, Part 3

John takes a look at even more sequences, bringing out the melodic content from the chords.

14:49 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

25

Chromatic Approach Chords

A very simple trick to expanding your chord tones is adding chromatic approach chords. John shows us how to do this in the most effective way.

8:25 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

26

Chords for the Blues

Now, John takes a turn in Chord Alchemy towards the blues. The blues provides us with a consistent structure to apply all the explorations thus far in Chord Alchemy!

14:37 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

27

Exploring Dominant 7th Chords for Blues

John continues to look at the blues, this time exploring dominant 7th chords. Specifically, how to draw out the melodic content to give your voicings more color and purpose in the context of the blues.

10:34 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

28

Mid Series Review

Now, a recap of some key ideas so far in Chord Alchemy 2. This should help solidify some concepts and techniques to help you move forward through the last part of the series!

20:49 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

29

Blues Inside to Outside, Part 1

The blues can range from very simple to quite complex. In the next two lessons, John takes us on a journey from very "inside" sounds to jazzy colors that lie "outside" the norm.

11:47 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

30

Blues Inside to Outside, Part 2

In this lessons, John continues to take the blues from and "inside" sound to and "outside" sound, exploring all manner of colors and voicings!

16:44 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

31

Utilizing Open Strings

Working in open strings when you can gives your voicings a much wider range of color and timbre. In this lesson, John shows us some of his favorite ways to use open strings.

10:19 Runtime

3.0 Difficulty

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  • Playing since 1920
  • 31 lessons at JamPlay
John March, a professional musician, audio craftsman/technologist and consultant with 30 years in the Industry, is focused on creating opportunities that utilize his aggregate skill-sets and diverse professional experience to creatively solve problems for projects and events that serve the greater good.

John March, a professional musician, audio craftsman/technologist and consultant with 30 years in the Industry, is focused on creating opportunities that utilize his aggregate skill-sets and diverse professional experience to creatively solve problems for projects and events that serve the greater good. By bridging the gap between artist and technical craftsman, March is able to solve complex problems and function as a liaison between fiscal, technical, logistical and creative team members. His specialties include advanced creative problem solving and consulting, and utilizing cutting-edge and evolving technologies. March’s resume includes having been trained at the Record Plant in NYC, and working with some of the best musicians in the world such as Michael Jackson and Sting, functioning as the lead mixer for Fox Family Channel, Director of Audio Operations for TCI International’s interactive division, designing recording studios, and working on large-scale productions for entertainment corporations such as Warner Bros, DreamWorks, and Oracle. John currently plays and records with the Zen Blues Quartet featuring; Mike Finnigan – B3 and Vocals (Grammy award winner and Platinum Artist, performed with Jimi Hendrix, Etta James, Peter Frampton, Rod Stewart, Ringo Starr, Phantom Blues Band and Taj Mahal, Dave Mason, Joe Cocker, Bonnie Rait, Crosby Stills and Nash…), Steve Ferrone – Drums (Grammy award winner and Platinum Artist, performed with Tom Petty, Eric Clapton, George Harrison, Average White Band…), Tim Scott – Bass and lead vocals (Jack Mack, Tower of Power, Robben Ford, Stevie Wonder…), and can be seen playing around LA with the “Existential Cowboys”, comprised of session musicians Jimmy Earl – Bass (Chick Corea, Robben Ford and The Jimmy Kimmel show), Jeff Paris – KBDS and Vocals (Dave Stewart, Ringo Starr, Keb Mo), and Sergio Gonzalez – Drums. Although the focus of March’s work has been music, audio production and post-production, he has always operated at the cutting edge of technological possibility. As a serious technologist with a strong ability to realize technological and production methodologies and solutions, as well as develop and manage teams of production and design personnel, March’s top priority is always to bring out the best in the people he works with in order to create the best possible end product. Recent projects have included consulting and sound design for multiple iPhone and iPad apps and sound supervisor for various film and TV projects. A message from John: I am a career musician/guitarist, sound mixer and audio/technology consultant, and have been since since 1980. I am also a single dad with an amazing and wonderful 19 year old son, a scuba diver, zen student, teacher, writer, Buddhist facilitator in training, and amateur photographer. I have spent most of my life exploring the connection between art and spiritual practice, service and engaged social activism. My zen teacher used to say that; “the quality of your Life is dependent on the focus of your attention.” I am deeply interested in situations and opportunities that move me towards the most creative place and the best possible solutions for each and every project that i work on. I believe that it is within our grasp to create situations and opportunities that transform and re-write the cultural status quo. To re-imagine the global culture as a communal work of Art. The great Zen teacher Suzuki Roshi said things very clearly in his book Zen Mind, Beginners Mind, when he said, “All self-centered thoughts limit our vast mind. When we have no thought of achievement, no thought of self, we are true beginners. Then we can really learn something.”
Reviews & Feedback 89/100 with 114 ratings
Gtork

Very good.

kodosthealien

Great explanation of chords and their construction. Always good to think differently about approaching this topic. Excellent lessons

shawnmccann

I like his approach. I can see his trajectory and look forward to future lessons while enjoying the current exploration. Fav teacher so far

jim6044

I really want to learn this stuff, but find it may be impossible for me. I will keep at it.

1989033b

Instructor seems both very competent and very passionate.

guitarman416

Love it! Looking to add creativity to the basic progression. Perfect. Well done.

jp93722

Nice teaching style. Interesting concepts/ideas.

leeloftus

Teacher and content are great very helpful

scannon120

The first time I saw John was live at the live summer event. I wasn't sure how the Star Spangled Banner was going to be presented. John captured my imagination and I'm still between Phase 1 and 2 but I'm really excited and enthusiastic about

NickLeeMusic1

This guy knows what's up. I'm excited for this course. Rare to find a teacher who truly wants you to develop your own artistic voice.

surf7

this lessons help me to understand more the chord chamestry book.

joshmorrow

This seems like a great lesson to take me out of a "playing rut." Easy to understand, and versatile lesson.

philbilly

your an absolute genius !