Go back, way back to the early 50's
and if you turned your radio dial to 1510, maybe, just maybe you'd be
able to catch what might have been the greatest group of DJs
assembled at one station.
     Here they are in 1970,(from left to right) John "R" Richbourg,
Gene Nobles, Bill "Hoss" Allen and Herman Grizzard. The gentleman
in the back is news announcer Don Whitehead.
    John"R" is the man that is credited with launching
James Brown's career, a man that most listeners thought was
black, a man that could sell darn near anything and did.
He came to WLAC in 1942 and stayed until 1973,
like his fellow DJs at WLAC he played mostly black R&B on his
show, and helped many black artists get airtime on a major station.
     Gene Nobles was a bingo caller at carnivals before
becoming a DJ at WLAC he was the first DJ with a large mixed
race audience to consistently play black R&B. He developed a
style that was copied by DJ's across the country.  Sometimes
called the "Apeman" by his listeners, because of his use of a
Tarzan ape call, Gene hosted "Randy's Record Hi-Lights".
        Bill Allen grew up in Gallatin Tennessee,
raised by his grandmother and her black housekeeper, many of his
childhood friends were black and he acquired an appreciation for black
spiritual music and the blues.
By 1948 he was hosting a program called "Harlem Hop"
on WHIN in Gallatin, he then auditioned for WLAC and in 1949 he
became their man-on-the-street interviewer but soon moved to the late
night spot.
Herman Grizzard joined WLAC in the 30’s and hosted many different
programs, until he joined the late night lineup in the 50’s. 
His show was sponsored by Buckleys Record store, and  pushed
the sale of R&B records, most of these records were available
by mail order in packages of 4 or 5.