Taco Wagon was originally the brainchild of one Jon "Crazy
Pablo" Roren. In 1991, while a student at the State University of New
York, College at Oswego, Pablo, ever the broadcasting major, had a
regular radio show on the college's cable-only radio station, WOSR.
That station, now WNYO, went FM in April of 1992, and with it came
Pablo and his collection of every esoteric import CD known to man. Some
folks had college loans for college. Pablo's were for his account at
the CD shop.
In 1992, Pablo was searching WNYO's walls for interesting new music to
play when he found a scratched volume of College Music Journal. This
particular volume contained a track by the Young Fresh Fellows,
entitled "Tacowagon". Pablo had already become familiar with the
Fellows from the song "Twisting" from They Might Be
Giants' 1990 release, "Flood". The TMBG reference led him to
the Fellows' "Electric Bird Digest" album, which includes such
classics as "Sittin' on a Pitchfork" and "Hillbilly Drummer Girl". One
spin in the CD player later, Pablo had found his signature song.
Enter Jismo. Meeting Pablo as a freshman in 1992 in an Oswego residence
hall, Jismo, a.k.a. "Little Matt" Willis, immediately clicked with
Pablo with their mutual love of R.E.M., Ned's Atomic
Dustbin, Camper Van Beethoven, and Dr. Pepper. They began a
friendship which eventually spanned the width of the country, spawned
some petty larceny, and still stands strong today.
After much prodding, the non-FCC licensed Jismo became a regular
accompanying Pablo on his radio show, now entitled Taco Wagon, in early
1993. Their off-beat, radical, tell-it-like-it-is,
what-the-hell-it's-safe-harbor-hours, style of radio announcing and
kvetching endeared them to few listeners, but did gain them a
Pablo's graduation from SUNY Oswego in 1995 not only surprised many,
but it also brought the end of an era for WNYO. In addition, the
demands of Jismo's technical theatre degree pulled him away from his
love of the radio mic. Taco Wagon made it's final radio broadcast in
The next chapter:
While perusing the net, Scour.net in particular, in
late 1999, Jismo happened upon a small app, myCaster, that promised to
allow him to put up his own radio station quickly and easily. He had
been experimenting with ways to play his extensive CD collection at the
office without dragging it from home. Always the skeptic, Jismo
download the app. Within minutes he was able to stream music to whoever
The proverbial "light-bulb" appeared about his head.
Seventy bucks and a quick stop at Network Solutions later, Jismo had
his prize in hand, the domain tacowagon.com.
Immediately Jismo emailed both his ex-radio partner
Pablo, and also their long-time mutual friend Mikey. Excitement and
energy was high. And why shouldn't it be?
Taco Wagon was to live again...digitally.