Howdy- To the List at Large: Here is a simple question.......was Jackson Pollack an artist? Why? At the time of his creating and ravings (which I understand being a Friend of Bill W. for over eight years), most would not give him the time of day. Let's add Andy Warhol, Roy Liechtenstein, etc. to the list. Were they artists? John Cage? Hmmmmmmm........ Man has an innate desire to explore, understand, and create (not just pro-create as the net seems to suggest), wouldn't you all agree. It is in the creating that makes man the artist. The inspiration we often call the 'muse' is from a source of power beyond our understanding. Ego-centric man is the first to criticize and the first to take credit. I always find that so amusing. This is, of course, my opinion based on personal experience. I am myself am not a musician, not by the musicians standards anyway ( my dad was a pro jazz clarinets player, so I do know what a musician is). I am one who benefits from the efforts of individuals like all of you. I am a part of your creations of art, because I am the listener. I also take the loops you create, and that are sold, or provided on the net, and reshape them into new art/music forms. Am I an 'artist'? I always have to go back to Andy, Roy, and Jackson when I wonder if the music I am making is a 'sham'. Self doubt is a bitch when you are the sensitive artist type. I digress; when I think of those men, whose art is now in VERY HIGH DEMAND, I realize that I am no more, and no less the artist then any other human being, who puts out the effort to create, for the enjoyment of himself and others. One (er two?) last point(s): I have another sensitive artist type in my life. My twelve year old son. He has been playing the guitar for almost four years now. When we go to our local Mars Music or Guitar Center (a small advantage of living in Orange County, Calif.) we do two things together. The first: He straps on the most awesome, expensive guitar that he can get away with, plugs into the biggest Marshall Stack available, starts to play, and that quiet, sensitive boy comes ALIVE! Can he play well? Hell no....but when you see the look in his eyes (and you all know that look, don't you?) the sounds of the tarnished chords and crummy twelve year old lead runs (that he has practiced and practiced on with his teacher), you can't help but smile. He isn't very good compared to Steve Vai, but then Pollack wasn't Matise either. When he plays, I hear the Force, the Muse, the Power exiting an other human (in this case, my son) to bring pleasure to another (in this case, just me, I suppose). I may be the only one in his audience that loves what I hear, but the circle of art, the circle of the Power, is completed, none the less. Second: After that is done, we go over to Keys/Synth toys section (my favorite..boy's love toys). We find the most expensive sets of Poly synth batteries, and the two of us start to make our own impromptu art, what we all call music. It is not uncommon for a small group of people to gather back there, to see who is creating all this sound (and it sounds pretty good, cause we both have 'the juice'). Mind you, neither one of us has studied piano (i.e., can't play keys), and if modern SYNTHS weren't programmed computers with keyboard triggers attached, none of this would be happening. But the audience gathers any way, because the Force is flowing baby! Tell someone Andy's Soupcans are not 'art' at an auction for one of them!!!!! I have written to much, and I apologize, but when giant intellects (like mine ;} )start to ruminate, and ponder about others 'art', I am reminded of this argument and all the individuals I have brought forth as examples. Pretentious? Perhaps...... If you really want to do something worthwhile, that will actually mean something when you are not 'here' someday, take a kid(s) and SHOW THEM how the muse works through you. Show THEM your process, for no money or glory. You may be the spark that ignites the flame of the next Stockhausen, Brubeck, or Vangelis! We have all been blessed/cursed with this artist thing. It is not for us to judge, but strictly to share....there in lies the eternal joy. Please send Patrick (my son) and I your web site links, so that we may share your in your 'muse'. Thank you all for your creativity. Let the Circle be unbroken. Your new friend, Brad Chas aka 'tHE wALLcLANmAN'