During my studies of American History and Journalism in the mid 90s at Berlin’s Freie Universität, I was also working as a bartender at one of Kreuzberg’s Mexican restaurants until a friend of mine one day told me about a new, small, commercial radio station playing Jazz 24/7 and if that’s something I wanted to try out as well in addition to my studies. So one day I was calling the station and was asked in to introduce myself.
I had imagined writing pieces for the radio DJs, like biographical things for specialist shows, stuff like that. I never intended to work at the mic myself. The music director at the time had his own afternoon show and Tania Maria was in town to play at the Quasimodo club. I was literally thrown into his live show to interview her right there and then and that’s how my career in radio started. The music director was Christian Broecking. We’ve spent a lot of time going out after his shows, talking Jazz and all kinds of stuff.
Christian went on to work for a classical radio station, published several books (he had already published “The Marsalis Complex” when I met him), and worked as a longtime editor for Jazzthing magazine where he produced the successful “Community Talk” series. But it was Christian who was responsible for my career as a radio DJ and music director for that same Jazz station, where I’ve worked for over 20 years until 2015. I owe him a lot. Christian lost his fight against cancer last week. He was only 63 years old.