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Rockin’ with Ryles

Caramie SchnellVail, CO Colorado
AE Riley Babcock PU 8-23-07
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MINTURN – Rylie Babcock is 14, but his taste in music is circa ’60s and ’70s – Bob Marley, The Beatles, The Monkees and The Clash usually top the set list by his side at Radio Free Minturn’s studio. “Everyone thinks it’s so weird that I like this old music,” he said, saying his friend’s often rib him for preferring The Who over the The Strokes. “I got three CD’s from a friend – The Who, The Ramones and The Doors. I downloaded them and started listening.” He liked them all but “The Who just really got to me – I really liked them.”Babcock is an 8th grader at Minturn Middle School. This summer he broke his neck jumping on a trampoline with his older brother and so this fall, rather than enduring physicals and strapping on football pads, he’s picking out songs to play for his new radio show called “Decades, dude” on 107.9 FM. “It’s really affecting me,” Babcock said. “I was really sad for awhile. I felt like I messed up and I really wanted to play sports and I messed that up for my themself. But I’ve realized that accidents happen – there’s nothing to do about it.”

Just over a month ago, Babcock attempted a backflip on a trampoline. He landed on the soft part of the trampoline, but on his head. A CT scan at the emergency room showed that Babcock had ruptured and broken two vertebrae in his neck.”I was in immense pain,” he said, “it hurt so bad.”Wearing mirrored aviator glasses and a plastic neck brace, Babcock leans over the radio to introduce his next song – Marley’s “Three Little Birds,” before continuing.”I felt really lucky,” he said, “I was very close to being paralyzed. I was pretty freaked out when I found out.”Babcock spent two weeks at Children’s Hospital in Denver – a week waiting for the swelling to go down before doctors surgically fused his vertebrae, and another week recovering. Babcock is feeling much better, he said, and though he is a bummed about missing football and basketball season (he hopes he’ll be ready to run track come spring), he’s happy to have the chance to broadcast his own radio show every week.

Liz Campbell, Radio Free Minturn’s board director, said she’s been talking to Babcock about doing his own show for over a year now. “His parents donated some seed money to the station when we first started,” Campbell said. “I conviced them that this a great thing for kids to do after school. Most kids are involved in sports so they don’t have the time, but if their interests lie outside of sports, it’s really a lot of fun.” When Campbell saw Babcock walking down the street in a neckbrace, she reintroduced the radio show idea and Babcock agreed.”I love to put music out there that other people like,” Babcock said. At first, he was a little nervous about being on air, but after three or four training sessions in Radio Free Minturn’s 8×8 foot closet-like studio with Campbell, Babcock is feeling pretty comfortable in front of the mixing board and mic. “It’s pretty amazing how well he’s done,” Campbell said. “I’m anxious to hear how he does on his own.”==============



Rockin’ RylesWho: Rylie Babcock, aka Rockin’ RylesWhat: “Decades, dude” – a radio show with a classic rock focus.Where: 107.9 FM, Radio Free MinturnWhen: Monday from 5 – 7 p.m.=============


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