Bettina studied music, she even wrote a few compositions, and so had some basis for understanding what was new and beautiful about Beethoven's music. Nevertheless, I ask this question: was it Beethoven's music that captivated her, its notes, or was it rather what the music represented, in other words, its vague affinity to the ideas and attitudes that Bettina shared with her generation? Does love for art really exist and has it ever existed? Is it not a delusion? When Lenin proclaimed that he loved Beethoven Appassionata above all else, what was it he really loved? What did he hear? Music? Or a majestic noise that reminded him of the solemn stirrings in his soul, a longing for blood, brotherhood, executions, justice, and the absolute? Did he derive joy from the tones, or from the musings stimulated by those tones, which had nothing to do with art or with beauty?
-- Milan Kundera, Immortality
I fell in love with jazz when I was still in my teens. While my classmates were listening to the Beatles, I was discovering Ornette Coleman. I also was making contact with like-minded musicians. Although it seemed unlikely that in the distant suburbs I would come upon anyone serious about a genre inextricably linked to city life, I did find such people and