Vincenzo Pati. The passion struck me at the age of 14. Thedials, switches and blinking lights of hi-fi control panelsstirred a curiosity that, soon enough, became amazementas I spun vinyl and funk flowed forth: Archie Bell & the Drells,Average White Band, Brass Construction, Cameo, ColonelAbrams, James Brown, Roy Ayers, Steve Arrington, andothers. Soon enough, I realized that music was becomingmore than a passion. Gripped by the soul music dubbedPhiladelphia sound and, soon thereafter, the wider world ofAfro music, it dawned on me that music had become a drug.I began working in a bank at the age of 23. The drabsurroundings, however, never pulled me away from music. Iwas becoming hooked on house music, at the time anascent yet quickly rising movement. A close childhoodfriend, was becoming a DJ and producer of internationalcaliber. Watching him spin vinyl was an inspiration. I alsobegan to follow the impressive work of other internationalDJs, including Danny Krivit, Frankie Feliciano, FrankieKnuckles, Hed Kandi, Joey Negro, Little Louie Vega, andMiguel Migs. All still work today.My tastes in music have expanded over the years as Iembraced such artists as Erykah Badu, Randy Crawford,Floetry, Michael Jackson, Maxwell, Me'shell Ndegeocello,Raphael Saadiq, Jill Scott, Lisa Shaw, and others. T he topflightproducers who have most influenced me includePatrick L. Chappell, Andy Daniell, Simon Dunmore, JamieLewis, Victor Simonelli, Soulmagic. From them, I learned thatthe time to act was approaching. I needed to become aproducer, communicating not just with words, gestures,dances and colors, but also by offering to others the gift ofnew music.