During his thirty years as host of the WUOM radio show Jazz Revisited, Hazen Schumacher amassed 50,000 78s, 10,000 LPs, and 400 CDs—enough to fill five rooms at various university locations. Then, in 1997, WUOM changed its format, ended the show, and wanted the space back. Schumacher was delighted to find a museum in Hamburg, Germany, that was eager to have it. As he watched the movers pack up the collection, he remembers thinking, “that part of my life is over.”
Only it wasn’t. Jazz Revisited has since been the subject of three books, one of them by Schumacher himself (A Golden Age of Jazz Revisited, 1939–1942, coauthored with the late U-M professor John Stevens). The others were written by Bix Eiben, the founder of the Hamburg museum. A retired businessman, Eiben inherited his love of jazz from his father, who managed to listen to the quintessentially American music even when it was forbidden in Nazi Germany.
Schumacher not only gave Eiben his music collection, he also shipped tapes of the shows to the museum. Eiben has since rebroadcast them on German radio, and two dozen episodes of Jazz Revisited can now be heard on the museum’s website, www.bixeibenhamburg.com. Among the regular listeners: Schumacher himself, who often tunes in while shaving.