Actually, one of the great things playing Bach teaches you is a sublime feeling for rhythm. OK, this might sound paradoxical. If you hear the words "feel" or "rhythm", you might think of jazz, of latin music, of rock, maybe of Carl Orff, but chances are you don't associate the flowing, linear music of Bach.

Rhythm is essential to it, though. The slow stylus fantasticus parts in the toccatas, for example, are near impossible to execute well if you don't feel that beat kicking up your spine that tells you how to time those figurations of hemisemidemiquavers so they fit and sound like something people actually like to listen to.

It has been said that Bach invented jazz. Of course that's ridiculous -- no single person ever invented jazz, not even Jelly Roll Morton, no matter how often he claimed it, and certainly nobody invented jazz before 1800. But it's true that, for example, certain preludes from the Well-Tempered Clavier, especially those with repetitive patterns undergoing chord progressions (such as the nos. 1, 2 and 6 from WTC I), carry a groove. You could have a drummer play a swing beat to these without having to modify the feel for the beat to fit. (Jacques Loussier has made quite a buck from the inherently jazziness of Bach, by the way.)

Let me conclude: Bach is good for you, maybe in more ways than you can imagine. I would never have thought that my jazz comping and my Bach playing would have benefited from each other, but they did.