Where I grew up, jazz was a rumor, a footnote in our schools' history books. Nobody I knew actually listened to it. Or talked about it. Jazz was as abstract an idea to me as the exotic, far-away locales I associated with the art - Harlem and New Orleans.
The earliest years of adulthood found me in Nashville, where, contrary to the assumptions both then and now, much more than country music is played. Here I found jazz clubs, radio stations playing the music, college courses with musicians teaching the history. Ahh, so much education!