Saturday, June 27, 2009

Jazz on German radio - part 2

Going to a seminar on jazz and film last week in Linz, run by Bernd Hoffmann of WDR, made me realise all the more the differences between radio in UK and in Germany, something I alluded to a while back
First, radio is able to be highly reactive to its environment and its musicians. For example in Linz, there was a small festival in a club called Cheeese (sic), which was recorded by ORF and WDR. So all six bands were recorded and the broadcast went out live or just delayed by a day or a few hours. Furthermore, one at least from Cologne, co-led by saxophonist Niels Klien, was a new Franco-German collaboration encouraged by WDR. How often can that happen over here? Not that often, where decisions at the BBC are made so centrally, the shows are much shorter and broadcast at graveyard times. Meanwhile the enthusiasm of the presenters and producers over there - not just Bernd Hoffmann but also the likes of Arne Schumacher of Radio Bremen or Guenther Huesmann - and their ability to translate ideas into practice is so different.
No wonder jazz over here remains so much in the hinterground.

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