Here's something to ponder for you.... when I was in Junior high playing trumpet the music instructor had to be gone and he actually (not sure the circumstances) let the janitor student teach. He had the cheesiest looking suit I've ever seen, but I also remember him playing the trumpet like I had never heard.. The guy was actually F'ing amazing. So was he a professional. ? NO he wasn't but he was an amazing player, and I always have to chuckle thinking back to that way back when (Who knows maybe he was a pro that had 'issues' that resulted him in becoming a janitor) Personally I think if you get paid to perform music you are a professional. It doesn't mean that you adhere to a "Professional" code of ethics. It just means that you are employed to make music. Doesn't mean that you can sustain yourself on nothing else. I have friends who have played professionally and did nothing else but have gone back to keeping the day job and doing music more on a part time basis. A similar case would be someone I know that is a professional writer and published author but he doesn't make his money writing novels as it is very difficult to become the elite few that make it such as professional muscian, writer, actor, basketball player, NFL player.... etc. etc. ... So maybe there are different classes of professionals such as 1. Do you make 80-100% of your living from playing music, 2. What is the quality of your work? (i.e. playing piano in the mall on Saturday or playing with an orchestra?) or having serval CDs produced 3. Another thing is calling yourself a pro, but also getting recognition by other people that would be in the position to call you a pro. a.k.a. what reputation do you have?