All Ages Radio History
The story of All Ages Radio is much like one that you would read in your favorite book of worship, but this time, you don’t have to pretend to read it to please your parents. If you even have parents.
The current edition of the show would not have been possible if it were not for the solid foundation poured by the individuals you are about to meet. Without these people, you would have no idea how you even landed on this site, yet alone why it is that you tune your radio to 89.1 FM WONC in Chicago, or log onto the internet every Friday night. It is a tale much like the Vietnam War, except we are winning.
Over 7 years ago, a young African American lad - Big Black - collaborated with a sweet flower child - Amber Payne - and recognized the gaping hole and desperate need for a punk rock radio outlet. Black and Amber truly laid the framework from the ground up, amassing legions of loyal listeners who were hungry for commercial free, punk rock. The Chicago scene soon after, began to take notice.
With countless interviews and live on-air performances with the bands the listeners demanded, both national and local, the show felt it needed to expand. A third voice was added to the mix - Devin 'the white boy' Johnson - and provided some serious, comic relief. Devin fit his 'whipping boy' role well and soon became a permanent Friday night fixture. Devin's inter-scene connections only added to the array of bands that appeared on the program, and his creative head bred new and innovative features.
As Black and Amber decided that they had said what they had to say, they stepped back and passed the controls to Devin for a shot at a solo stint hosting the show for nearly a year. With this change came the young and eager talent of a Mr. Ryan Manno and the two took the revolution a step further. More new features were popping up weekly, as the fan base of punk rockers grew steadily by the hour. It is from here that the current state of All Ages Radio was fertilized and planted and ready for mutation.
As Devin realized his efforts could not keep up with the high energy of punk rockers in Chicago, he signed off of All Ages Radio one last time. Ryan hit him in the ass with the door, and turned a page in the history book. As he experimented with weekly features that added colorful character to the blistering punk rock playlists, Ryan continued to build on the All Ages Radio foundation. From here the show became more than punk rock on the radio, it became entertainment, a lifestyle, and most of all a pyramid, get-rich quick scheme. Sadly the money was lost in a dirty game of dice.
In the fall of 2001, Ryan was paired with a new duo of eager, young punksters - Kevin and Gordon. The trio immediately fit like a tight condom, as they embarked on an entirely new era of All Ages Radio. The three of them triple-handedly revolutionized the art of punk rock radio, by adding special celebrity interviews, sketch comedy-esque segments, phone pranks, band interviews, live sets and other various punk-as-hell features. Not only did they entertain the listeners but became each other’s biggest fans in the face of a crazy industry and a demanding scene. All Ages Radio began to be a low-income, household name.