FREEHAND new music from Rich Osborn (featuring artwork by claude smith)

I am pleased to announce the release of Rich Osborn's latest collection of music, "Freehand".   Its a special honor to have had my artwork chosen for this project.   Rich is one of the principle exponents of the  American Raga style of acoustic guitar music on the scene today.  He was a protege' of guitarist, Robbie Basho, and has been influenced  by Ali Akbar Khan, master of the Indian sarod.  Find him at 

In addition to being a fabulous and  inventive guitarist, Rich is also one of the most articulate writers on the subject of American Primitive Guitar, and has recently been called upon to write articles and liner notes on several high profile CDs of this genre.  As part of the liner notes on "Freehand", Rich  had a few things to say about my 'MARGINS'  blackboard paintings, featured on the cd ……..

"…'s the dark space of the  blackboard that intrigues me, In Claude's painting on the cover, the place of speculation and possibility and discovery, its association with thinkers and dreamers working out equations and relationships and imagery, re-imagining their understanding of the universe… reveals that the darkness is not truly empty; like the universe's deep space, it is a delicate but resilient and living membrane, an "empty fullness", a vast matrix of invisible gravitational lines laced with speeding light and energy. It embodies the fragility, boldness, anxiety and joy of reaching out to something unsuspected, the pentimentos of erased areas and residues from past events, all birthing new lines that are not afraid to appear awkward, or whose beauty requires a new vision…."

"……Freehand means drawing freely beyond templates, patterns, known forms, but informed by hard-won mastery. The guitarist's hands are his voice and brush, seeking and finding and expressing all in the same moment, revealing the totality of his state of being.  This is the edgy yet wonder-filled experience of free exploration in the darkness of unknowing: both empty and full, tentative and assured, riding ahead on the point of the arrow of time.…."