Life without music,” the philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche said, “would be a mistake.”

Boy, would it.

I must get it from my father, who had a large collection of big band record albums and listened to a country-and-western radio station in the car, and my mother, who loved classical music and Broadway show tunes. And it was pure fate that the seventh-grade art class I signed up for was filled, and the only elective available was orchestra. Initially mortified – “Orchestra?!” – it turned out to be one of the best things that could have happened, opening a door to a lifetime of music playing and appreciation.

The Honolulu Symphony Pops will host jazz great Diana Krall on March 19 and 20. We’re pleased to feature Ms. Krall on the cover of this issue, and to bring you an in-depth look at the woman and her music. This is a talented beauty with great depth and quite a story. (Check our calendar of events for opera and symphony schedules.)

Also on a musical note – pun intended, sorry, can’t help myself sometimes – we take a look at some of the coolest guitars, drums and pianos for musicians or the music lovers in your life.

But there’s more to life, and especially the good life, than music.

There are also, well, diamonds.

You’ll see some stunning sets in our photo feature Diamond Desire. Despite remarkable planning from a group led by creative director Gina Lambert, including detailed, movie-like story boards, the photo shoot at a Honolulu residence had our staff quite nervous. “All I could think about,” says Gina, “was a diamond going down the drain.” The car we used, by the way, is a 1959 Porsche that prior to the shoot had not been driven in a year.

With this issue HILuxury begins a new feature on gardens and gardening. Coming from a family of gardeners, and as the gentleman farmer of a small herb and vegetable garden, I love gardens and the human quest of working with nature to create something approaching the divine.

A garden, it occurs to me, is a lot like music. As author Kurt Vonnegut wrote of music, “It makes practically everybody fonder of life than he or she would be without it.”

tagged in Kurt Vonnegut