Linkin Park fans are a curious bunch. They're intriguing, compelling and downright different! The fact is that we get lots of questions concerning vocalists Chester Bennington and Mike Shinoda, guitarist Brad Delson, drummer Rob Bourdon, DJ Joseph Hahn and bassist Phoenix. Justifiably so, but in the past year, linkin Park's special combination of talent, dedication and artistic vision has resulted in a powerful musical statement that's being embraced by headbangers throughout the world. Their debut album, Hybrid Theory, is well past double platinum and the group is diligently compiling music for their second effort, which hopefully will emerge by next summer. We have picked through the hundreds of questions submitted to Hit Parader by dedicated Linkin Park fans around the world. We then posed them to vocalist Shinoda. Here's the skinny...

Tom, Richmond, VA: Why did you decide to do the Family Values tour?
Mike Shinoda: Part of the reason we wanted to do it is we love Stone Temple Pilots. Family Values is something we've always looked up to- it's always been a cool tour as far as the diversity it brings, mixing up rock and hip-hop groups.

Cheryl, Boise, ID: How did you like doing the Ozzfest?
MS: Ozzfest was cool because we hadn't done a metal festival before. We were able to introduce kids to our type of music and the different things that we bring- the hip-hop elements, the metal elements and the electronic elements. And then at the same time there were kids coming from kind of the same background as us, checking out some metal bands for the first time.

Chuck, Levittown, NY: When you are on tour with other bands, do you think of collaborating with them?
MS: It's gone through our heads before. On our next album, I don't think that a cameo appearance by another artist would really work. We're open to doing things with other people; for instance, I just did a track with the Executioners. It's called It's Going Down; it's a hip-hop track that I sampled some guitars on. It will be on their next album.

Vinny, Los Angeles, CA: How do you keep your voice from getting hurt when you belt out those songs such as Crawling?
MS: The heart of vocal work in that sense is done by Chester. Somehow he manages to play entire shows and not even get hoarse. I think part of it is he's singing from his diaphragm, which is important for every vocalist! He's also just built that way... his voice is really strong.

Julio, Porto, Portugal: Do you guys get nervous with the "second album pressure"?
MS: We are feeling pressure, but we don't feel nervous. Naturally, the label and the media ask a lot of questions about the second album, but we spent a lot of our earlier years as a band learning how to write songs, which comes easily at this point.

Bink, Carroll, IA: Recording on the that a novel concept for Linkin Park?
MS: All six of us are more pressure per- formers, so it's interesting to see us creating without a big deadline looming over our heads. But at the same time, we really enjoy going through the creative process.

Bill, Fresno, CA: I was a huge rap freak until my friend made me listen to your music and now it's just Linkin Park. How does it make you feel to know you've changed people's entire perspective on rock?
MS: That's very exciting! I think everybody in our band listens to all different kinds of music, and we like sharing that with other people. Hopefully, no matter what you listen to, there's something from another genre you can like.

Dex, Wigan UK: You guys have a DVP coming out soon, I would like to know what is on the DVD, and the expected release date please? !
MS: It's coming out in the winter, probably late November. It's going to have ail of our videos, including live videos, as well as backstage footage, other live stuff, inter- views with the band, interviews with other bands, and all that. We're also trying to put a feature on it where you can switch cam- era angles while watching a show.

Gina, Miami, Fl: When exactly is the Hybrid Theory Remix coming out?
MS: Hopefully, in the early part of this year. Tentatively, let's say March.

Cletis, Garner, NC: What bands/artists have influenced Linkin Park?
MS: Lots. Everyone from Run DMC to the Beatles to STP and Jane's Addiction to Prodigy, Nine Inch Nails, the list goes on and on and on.

George, Bettendorf, IA: HEY MIKE!! I was wondering, what's currently in your CD player?
MS: The new Jimmy Eat World, D12, Sunny Day Real Estate, Helmet, and a bunch of other stuff. Hey man, thanks for asking!

Andrea, Appleton, WI: If, I remember correctly some of you guys were graphic artists before this gig. Do you think your work in the communication field influenced your stand on the message in your music?
MS: Studying art definitely prepared us for the music writing process in a great way. I used to be in classes with 30 other painters where we'd spend 40 hours on a project. Classmates would critique your work. You take the criticism and make your project better. It gives you an open mind when you're writing songs with people. Regarding lyrical content, craftsmanship is always an issue. I hope that the high-level craftsmanship I was taught worked its way into our music.

Biji, Sofia, Bulgaria: Where can I find the lyrics to My December?
MS: Good question! I should tell our guy to put them on our [web] site. You can ask on our message I board. I'm sure one of our fan sites , has lyrics posted.
Bob, Birmingham, AL: How often do you visit your official web site?
MS: As often as I can. Some weeks I go every other day, and then sometimes I go twice a month. When .I'm home, .I'm on there a lot. Now we're renovating the site. It'll be flash-based with a lot of new information, attractions and pictures, and Phoenix! We haven't been able to get much up of him on the site so far.

P.J.,Mesquite, TX: Why was it that songs such as Carousel, High Voltage, and Part of Me were never released when you guys were called Hybrid Theory?
MS: We made 2,000 copies of our EP. You can find them on eBay, but they're really expensive. I hope in the future we can find a way to use those songs in some way or another.

Benji, Tempe, AZ: What are some of the downfalls of success?
MS: Impersonators! I have been hearing about all these people impersonating different members of the band. Apparently, they go to fan sites and pretend they're us. They post or chat and tell people all kinds of crazy crap. Remember: unless you're on, you're NOT talking to or hearing from one of us! official site is the one we communicate through; so If It's not there, It's not the real deal!