Before I was old enough to have like – minded friends , as a young boy growing up in San Francisco, jazz became part of my life. It wasn’t just the music, as great as it was, it was the sense of goodness that it embodied – a way of bringing smiles to peoples faces and warmth to the spirit. I wish I could describe to you what it feels like to play jazz. There is nothing like the exhilaration which the challenge of improvising invites. Sometimes when I am in the midst of a really good performance my mind will switch to automatic pilot and I find myself just standing there while the spirit of jazz, occupies my body, choosing the correct note , the correct phrase, the correct idea , and I play it. It is a profound spiritual experience!