Mark Teixeira / Blog

New project " 3X "

INTRODUCING 3X. JOE SPINA ON BASS, LOUIE LE COCHE ON DRUMS, MARK TEIXEIRA ON GUITAR. In math X is always the variable. Anything can be plugged into the formula. Joe, Louie and I have a wide range of musical taste and ability, sometimes motivated by our sense of humour, therefore, anything goes.

" Land of many waters "

"Land of many waters" is a six part jazz composition based on a book called "Wild Coast" by John Gimlette. Traveling on South America's untamed edge Gimlette takes us deep into a world of swamp and jungle ,from hideouts of runaway slaves to the vegetation-strangled remnants of penal colonies and forts. He recounts Guyana's complicated ,often surprisingly bloody history .I hope this 50 min composition will be just as fabulously visual and entertaining as the book "Wild Coast" . All musical sections are based on the flow of water . Guyana was called land of many waters because it has over 1,500 rivers.The flow of water ,the flow of nature ,the flow of explorers ,leaders ,gold ,sugar ,slaves ,the flow of love and hate .All this flow in the heat and mud of the Land of many waters. ...Hope you enjoy it ! Mark

Frets and Lines = Frets and Match sticks

What's with the matchsticks ? Guitar players are asking about the match sticks under the strings in the photograph on the first page of my website. I got the idea in the 1970s from an article, "Sonic Shapes," written by Howard Roberts in Guitar Player Magazine. It interested me because it wasn't about music theory but more about shapes, something I knew well from art and drafting. I started looking at the neck of my guitar from a none musical view, and more like an Xs and 0s game. I got a sketch book and drew six lines for strings and 12 frets. When I have time, like sitting on a plane, I'll draw shapes first and think about it after. I have been playing this game for 35 years. If I modify the shapes to support musical theory I forget them. If I keep the shapes simple I always remember them. In jazz we have the opportunity to artfully go outside the harmony and return back. Symmetrical shapes are so strong the listener can follow if it's played with confidence. I know more music theory now than I did in the 1970s so I explore from the oposite direction. First, I draw all the dots of a scale like a melodic minor, then play a game of dot to dot with the intention of finding easy no brainer shapes. Shapes so simple I can easily remember them and they fit under my fingers naturally. I wrote the song "Lines" this way. The shapes can be used to out line chord changes, bass lines, or even what you want to avoid. You make the rules. New ideas will arise from the obstructions you created. The more limiting the design, the more creative you will have to be. Hope to hear some of your approaches in creating fresh ideas.

Cheers, Mark

Warren Greig
Warren Greig  (over 6 years ago)

Triadic invervisons superimposd over varius chords provides a lot ideas when combined with chromatics. Anyway enjoying your playing, very melodic for a guitarist lol....I did something different with sonic shapes before I read the article, graphed out and colour coded all the intervals, I was into art before switching to guitar....