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I stopped playing in public some year ago. It was’nt something I planned, it was just one of those things that starts out in a faint whisper and before you know it has taken on its own life entirely. People frequently ask me why and how I view things today and although things are clear to me now, it’s not always easy to explain. This is a summary of sorts, abstract as it is.      Between the years 2002 and 2008 I travelled approximately 8 times around the world. And that’s counting only intercontinental journeys, not distances within a continent or a country. But because I always wanted to see the world as a traveling musician, I didn’t complain. I still don’t. To be allowed to do what you’ve dreamt off and worked hard for is a blessing I wish for everyone. And to be honest I didn’t know any other life. By then I had been doing it for almost 25 years; happy to work hard every day, never saying no to a concert offer, squeezing an extra piece of music in to an already overloaded repertoire. But something was slowly starting to change. A little less enthusiasm about new challenges, a little less eager to go away for a long time and, worse of all, a level of playing that every now and then started to slip... In 2009 I decided to take some time off and stay at home with my family. What was supposed to be a short brake turned out to be much more. Both regarding time and content. It is not so interesting to elaborate on all that has passed but I would like to sum it up with words by T.S. Elliot. He said something like this: “We shall not cease from exploration And the end of all our exploring Will be to arrive where we started And know this place for the first time” We can all find a personal meaning in those words. As a dear friend of mine, the great luthier Philippe Poizzonies, said “the only way to go forward is to go deeper”. Of course it’s important to learn about new ways and to be open to new ideas, but sometimes to go deeper and to further explore your original ideas, is even more important. Being a traveling musician, my childhood dream, had become more of an incentive than being truthful. Perhaps it always was, only it didn’t matter to me when I was young. I really don’t know. What I know is this: today, whenever I hear a good and honest violinist on the radio or in a recording, that inner focus and happiness that I remember from long ago comes back.  And that means the world to me. When I was about 15 years old I wrote the following on a piece of paper:   “I am just taking the garbage outside, said Time, and never came back”. I was never been able to understand the meaning of those lines and I somehow came to accept it as curious nonsense. But when the sleeve for the recording of the Paganini caprices was being prepared I insisted on having the Latin phrase “Tempus anima rei” written on the inside. Meaning “Time is the soul of things”. Much like the physical universe the boundless universe of the human mind is vastly unexplored but I think I can say that my time has been well spent. About two years ago I very tentatively mentioned to my wife that perhaps I should make a recording. I started rambling about various choices of repertoire when she interrupted me and said she thought the 24 caprices by Paganini would be a good start. I was very surprised and the thought crossed my mind that she wanted to kill me. You know, it could be the perfect murder: “middle aged man, for all intents and purposes on a lifelong vacation, dies from mental exhaustion after attempting to record a ridiculous amount of difficult things in a very short time”. No one would ever suspect her. But it turned out to be the perfect thing to do at the time. The caprices by Paganini is something I have loved since I was a boy, so reconnecting with them in such a serious and focused way became a bridge back to a time when my love for the violin was fresh and innocent. And for that too I am for ever grateful. This recording is dedicated to my wife.