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Friday, May 11, 2012

Jean Hiraga sensei-san

Two weeks after the Koln meeting with my audio pals, I’ve someway settled the several impressions and chatting and swapping ideas, disk titles and sharing useful suggestions and hintings... as I got from them all…

... I must admit I really was quite anxious and nervous in meeting one of my audio mentors, Jean Hiraga: he inspired my audio choices since I read his several books and essays from early ‘80s onward in “Les Cahier de l’Audiophile”, visited, always in mid-'80s “La Maison de l’Audiophile” in Rue de Belfort in Paris when he was still behind it all - having my VERY first Western Electric 15A exposure ever - and, most of all, joining shortly after his musical and audio vision becoming a fervent follower and a proud and satisfied user and owner of his Le Classe A 30W and 20W stereo Class A power amps for decades, now.

My (remote) fear was I was going to meet – yes, must say it – my absolute audio hero and mentor and possibly finding a tired guru living on his past and present laurels or also a selfish individual, a God on his Olympus' top… never really thinking the above, of course, but I was so much waiting for this very meeting I had a mixed “ifs” tourbillon ;-)

What I found, instead... meeting Jean Hiraga, I met a sincere, hardcore audio enthusiast, a music lover, an humble, cool, witty and down-to-earth music addict, an audiophile among the audiophiles, both a technician and an amateur (in the very best meaning of this...), a smooth and gentle persona, he who travelled a lot, who met people in the six continents and listened to the nicest music systems around was showing such an enthusiasm and a sincere attitude to share and teach and... definitely having good time, in music and empathy and friendship.

A master and a gentleman, approachable, unintimidating, open and friendly and easygoing as only truly great personalities are!

Dear Jean, sincerely, has been a pleasure meeting you in person, listening you and learning a lot in terms of pure musical enjoyment… something which – I already was aware of the following – makes our passion one of the... no, in my opinion THE most enriching and complete and multi-layered passions on the planet.

Thanks a lot, Hiraga sensei-san… and again thanks, a BIG one, to Klaus, Reinhard and Bernd our Kolner friends for so masterfully planning our gathering.

... waiting for next edition, live music included;-)?!?

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