Mark Whitfield (c. 1967) is an American hard bop and soul-jazz guitarist born in Syosset, New York, probably better known for his recordings as bandleader for both the Verve and Warner Bros. labels. He has worked with Jack McDuff, Jimmy Smith, Courtney Pine Nicholas Payton, and Chris Botti, among others.
Whitfield graduated from Boston's prestigious Berklee College of Music, the world's foremost institute for the study of jazz and modern American music, in 1987 having studied composition and arranging as well as all styles of guitar performance. Upon graduation, he returned to his native New York to embark on a career as a jazz guitarist that afforded him the opportunity to collaborate with many legendary artists including Dizzy Gillespie, Art Blakey, Clark Terry, Jimmy Smith, Carmen McCrae, Herbie Hancock, Quincy Jones, Jack McDuff, Betty Carter, Shirley Horn, Ray Charles, Gladys Knight, Burt Bacharach, Joe Williams, Wynton Marsalis, Bradford Marsalis, Stanley Turrentine and his greatest teacher and mentor George Benson.
Along the way, the New York Times dubbed Whitfield "The Best Young Guitarist in the Business" and in September of 1990 Warner Bros. released his solo debut, "The Marksman". The success of this release has led to a recording career that has produced 14 solo projects and a myriad of collaborative efforts with some of the most important artists in recent years; Sting, D'Angelo, Mary J. Blige, Chaka Khan, John Mayer, Jill Scott, Roy Hargrove, Diana Krall, Lauryn Hill, Sy Smith and Chris Botti.
In September 2005, Whitfield accepted an invitation to join the faculty at his alma mater, teaming up with Joe Lovano, Ralph Peterson, Danilo Perez, and Terry Lynn Carrington as "Artists in Residence" at Berklee.
While maintaining a teaching schedule that requires his presence on campus one day a week for 14 weeks a semester, and a touring schedule that includes at least 100 concert dates per year with trumpeter Chris Botti, Whitfield still manages to remain active as a solo artist and 2008-2009 saw the release of his latest solo effort; a Stevie Wonder tribute entitled "Songs Of Wonder" and two collaborative projects with long time friends Christian McBride and Nicholas Payton.