Referring to the role of the artist, he said, "If he just follows the leader and accepts what's been done before, naturally, that can be brought to a very high skill. But if he wants to change it in some way and do it differently, then it jumps up to the major league." To Gene, Michael Jackson was one who made this leap.
Gene would be the last person to want new generations to mimic his work. He always encouraged young people to take what he did and go beyond. Similarly, he would never wish for those following in his footsteps to forget the important role he and others played in both the creation and execution of the masterpiece that begat this new production.