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Sylvia Alvarado interview, April 12, 2019: transcript






Interviewed by Rodrigo Vazquez, Monserrath Hernández, and Barbara Tabach. Sylvia Alvarado talks about growing up in North Las Vegas and her Catholic upbringing in a Mexican household. Her studies in Journalism & Media Studies led her to her career as a radio host on English and Spanish-speaking programs. She also talks about speaking "pocha" Spanish and the Latinx influence in radio programming.

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Alvarado, Sylvia Interview, 2019 April 12. OH-03683. [Transcript]. Oral History Research Center, Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.


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i AN INTERVIEW WITH SYLVIA ALVARADO An Oral History Conducted by Rodrigo Vazquez & Monserrath Hernández Latinx Voices of Southern Nevada Oral History Project Oral History Research Center at UNLV University Libraries University of Nevada Las Vegas ii ©Latinx Voices of Southern Nevada University of Nevada Las Vegas, 2018 Produced by: The Oral History Research Center at UNLV – University Libraries Director: Claytee D. White Project Manager: Barbara Tabach Transcribers: Kristin Hicks, Maribel Estrada Calderón, Nathalie Martinez, Rodrigo Vazquez, Elsa Lopez Editors and Project Assistants: Laurents Bañuelos-Benitez, Maribel Estrada Calderón, Monserrath Hernández, Elsa Lopez, Nathalie Martinez, Rodrigo Vazquez iii The recorded interview and transcript have been made possible through the generosity of a National Endowment for Humanities (NEH) Grant. The Oral History Research Center enables students and staff to work together with community members to generate this selection of first-person narratives. The participants in this project thank University of Nevada Las Vegas for the support given that allowed an idea the opportunity to flourish. The transcript received minimal editing that includes the elimination of fragments, false starts, and repetitions in order to enhance the reader’s understanding of the material. All measures have been taken to preserve the style and language of the narrator. In several cases photographic sources accompany the individual interviews with permission of the narrator. The following interview is part of a series of interviews conducted under the auspices of the Latinx Voices of Southern Nevada. Claytee D. White Director, Oral History Research Center University Libraries University of Nevada Las Vegas iv PREFACE Sylvia Alvarado proudly smiles as she describes herself as a Mexican American, who is a Las Vegas “native” since she was eleven months old. In February 1989 she was born in California to parents Rosa and Rudy Alvarado. They soon moved to Las Vegas for work and because they liked the community. Sylvia’s radio broadcasting career in 2009 as a receptionist at Lotus Broadcasting in Las Vegas, while also attending college: CSN from 2008 to 2012 and then UNLV from 2012 to 2015. She learned to never say no to an opportunity and managed her studies and work simultaneously for KOMP 92.3. By 2013, she jumped into Spanish-language broadcasting, though she claims not to be proficient in Spanish, and quickly won the hearts of the listeners. She hosted and created content for Los Sabados del Top 10 for La Buena 101.9 until 2016. At the time of this 2019 interview, Sylvia is known as a co-host on the Dave and Mahoney Morning Show on X-107.5 (KXTE), a CBS Radio affiliate. Soon afterwards, in June 2019, she returned to Lotus Broadcasting to be Promotions Director and on-air talent. v TABLE OF CONTENTS Interview with Sylvia Alvarado April 12, 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada Conducted by Rodrigo Vazquez & Monserrath Hernández Preface…………………………………………………………………………………………..iv Begins with biographical background, born in February 1989, in Santa Monica, CA into a Mexican immigrant family; in 1990 her parents moved to Las Vegas where an aunt lived; father eventually worked for the phone company and mother was a housekeeper at hotels, then got a degree in accounting. Live near Broadacres; describes her childhood neighborhood and attending parochial schools, St. Christopher’s, Bishop Gorman High School……………………………………..1 – 6 Describes her decision to have a quinceañera, her poufy dress and Shirley Temple curls, the reception with a chocolate fountain and mariachi music. Talks about the diverse demographics of her school experience; her participation in musical theater and being impressed by music since a young age, from Nirvana to Radiohead and her list of rock and alternative musicians. Her close relationship with her older brother; overcoming her fear of flying……………………..…...7 – 11 Talks about attending CSN then UNLV and doing an internship with Lotus Broadcasting; her decision to study journalism and media; already had a Saturday morning gig on KOMP when transferred to UNLV. Explains moving from receptionist to on-air talent; transcending her shyness. Story of introducing her all-time favorite group Muse at Mandalay Bay Event Center (2019). She tells of being with KOMP from 2010 – 2018; getting a one-hour show on La Buena, Spanish language station, though she did not grow up speaking Spanish and being referred to as “pochita” and often nervous about speaking Spanish………………………………..……………….12 – 17 Explains how she research the music genre played on La Buena, a bit about the station’s history and Spanish radio stations in the local market, types of music played, another channel called EXZA which is more pop and Spanish rock. Talks about stations she applied to, going from Lotus to CBS Radio and being part of the Dave and Mahoney Morning Show; critiques her sense of humor; her interviewing experiences, the drummer from Chevelle, Matt from Cage the Elephant, and Slash from Guns N’ Roses.……………………………………………………….……………….18 – 21 Shares memories of favorite music events such as KOMP Kegger, more recently meet and greets for Holiday Havoc for ALT 107.5. Recalls 1 October mass casualty shooting at Route 91 Harvest Festival in 2017, how local stations dumped music, had call-ins, she went to Blood Services on Charleston. Meeting musicians in person, being starstruck with she met Dave Grohl of the Foo Fighters……………………………………………..………………………………………22 – 25 vi Thoughts of being a role model for Latinas in radio or media; on-air game she played called Sexy or Salty, a Spanish lesson with Sylvia; proud of being Mexican American. Comedic use of “La Chona” performed by Los Tigres Del Norte on air occasionally. Her opinion of the term Latinx; Latino representation at her current station and others; Latinx interest in alternative music; future of radio and thoughts about social media…………………………..………………………25 – 29 Reminisces about her childhood, family traditions, holidays, such as Christmas, and Mexican food favorites. Considers her parents traditional Mexican parents. Reflects on being in her current position with the Dave and Mahoney morning show (Feb, 2017 – current). Shares that she has never experienced discrimination as a female or Latina, but has observed it elsewhere, gives a recent example. Her dream interview is of Matt Bellamy of Muse and Brian Molko of Placebo. Talks about preparation for interviews; admires Howard Stern’s interview style; improving her Spanish……………………………………………………………..…………………….…30 – 39 vii viii 1 Today is Friday, April 12th, 2019, and I am in the Oral History Research Center. Today with me [Rodrigo Vazquez] is… Monserrath Hernandez. And Barbara Tabach. And Sylvia. Can you spell your first and last name for us, please? Sylvia is S-Y-L-V-I-A and Alvarado is A-L-V-A-R-A-D-O. Let’s start with your family and childhood. What do you want to know? Where were you born? Santa Monica, California. Do you want the hospital, too? I know that. Do you know? Yes, sure. I do. Saint John’s Hospital. BARBARA: What day? February twelfth, which is a Sunday, nine a.m. So you know. I know. I was very curious one day and I asked my mom. How long did your family live in Santa Monica? My mom moved there from San Luis Río Colorado when she was, I think, seventeen, and then we moved to Vegas when she was thirty-five, and my dad was around the same age. They’ve been there pretty much their whole teen years, adult years. I was only there for eleven months of my life. Is that where they met? 2 Yes. Where is your dad from? His family is from Durango, but he was born in El Paso, Texas. My mom, again, was born in San Luis Río Colorado in Sonora, Mexico. How did they get to Santa Monica? My dad’s family moved to, actually, Venice, so that’s where he lived. Then my mom, her family moved when she was seventeen. That’s kind of how destiny came about. They both moved there with your grandparents, both of their parents? Yes. And then they moved to Las Vegas when, you said, you were eleven months? Yes. It was in 1990, I think, early 1990. Were your grandparents still in California? Yes. Well, my grandfather died in California. I think he was in his sixties, maybe. I’ve never met my grandfathers. He died in California and then eventually my grandmother moved, probably in the nineties, about. Is she here now in Las Vegas or did she move to Las Vegas? Yes, she moved to Vegas and she passed away in 2012. My other grandma from my dad’s side, she still lives here. What did your parents do in California? Where did they work? What was their first jobs? I’m not sure exactly what my dad’s first job was. He started working when he was fourteen and eventually, he worked for the phone company. He was with the phone company overall for a good thirty-something years. My mom would help my grandmother in the hotels; I think she 3 cleaned hotels. They worked at a factory. My mom had a bachelor’s degree in accounting, so she went to school; my dad did not. What made your parents decide to move here, do you know? My dad visited my aunt and he loved Vegas; they went back to California and they were like, I really want to come back to Vegas. He was like, we’re just going to move and then see if I can find a job. Luckily, the phone company was looking for someone. They were like, yes, you’re hired. It was by chance. It was too easy. Did he visit Vegas often or was this just like a one-time thing? I think it was like a one-time thing. So he came and he’s like, I’m going to just move. Yes, he was like, I like it here. But, again, because California, they were living in an apartment and they had two growing kids, so there’s not really much room for them to move and play and all that stuff. When he came to visit Vegas, he saw my aunt’s house, and the house next to hers was available. It had a huge backyard. He was like, this is perfect if I can get a job here and if I can move to this house and be next to my sister. It just all worked out. Did he end up moving into that house? Yes. Where was that house located? The neighborhood? Cheyenne and North Las Vegas Boulevard. It’s kind of by Broadacres. It’s no longer up; it burned down. It’s so horrible. My brother was looking at Google Maps and he was looking at where he used to live in California. He was like, let’s see the old house, how does it look. Then we just saw this big empty lot and it just looked burnt. We were like, oh my God, what 4 happened? Then we actually visited and it’s gone. My childhood home is gone. It was really heartbreaking. At least you weren’t in it when it happened, right? That’s true, I guess. What do you feel like? That attachment to a house is always sort of mystical. It’s always there. Even still, I’ll have dreams about that house. It’s so horrible. You’re like, oh, this is the kitchen where it was; this is where my room was; oh, this is where we used to play. It’s so sad to see it gone. You can’t do anything about it. How many years did you live in that house? We were there from ’90 to 2005, so about fifteen years. Your entire childhood. Was there. And you lived next door to your aunt, you said, right? Yes. Did you grow up with cousins? Yes. Were they similar age? I had two cousins. One was older, so he more hung out with my brother. Then the other one, she was older, too, but still close enough where we could hang out. Every single day I would go over to their house and I would be like, “Can I play with your Barbies?” Eventually they moved to a different part of town, so that kind of sucked because they were a little bit too far. You hung out with them. Did you have any other friends in the neighborhood? 5 I kind of remember one other little girl. She was about my age. We would play around every once in a while. We kind of grew apart. We just stopped being friends, I guess, like we stopped playing or whatever. MONSERRATH: What was that neighborhood like when you grew up and how has it changed since then? It was so quiet. It was such a cute little neighborhood. In front of us there was nothing; it was just like this huge lot. Super quiet, like you can just go out and not have to worry. Eventually they build houses in front of our house and more people started to come and we started hearing gunshots; it took that kind of turn. As soon as my mom and dad heard the gunshots and it was kind of getting dicey, they were like, we’ve got to move. That happened when you were going to high school, right? Yes. What was your schooling like? Did you go to public school; private school? I went to private school all my life from kindergarten to twelfth grade. Elementary, I went to St. Christopher, which is in North Las Vegas, and then I went to Bishop Gorman for high school and that was in the old location, which has been torn down, my friend told me because she lives around that area and she sent me pictures. That is also gone. BARBARA: Like we’re erasing your memories. Yes, seriously. I saw pictures and everything is torn down. There is nothing there now. I’m like, oh my God, don’t. I’m curious. What was parochial school like in that era? It was good. You would think that there is nuns. I never had a nun teacher. I might have had a substitute teacher who was a nun, but everybody was, quote-unquote, normal. It didn’t seem very 6 strict and like, oh, you have to do this; you have to do that. I always thought it was pretty lenient. I remember anytime an adult comes in, you would have to get up and say, “Good morning, Mr. Whatever.” They would teach us religion. Then when I went to Gorman, they had a religious class, but it was also different religions, so Hinduism and Judaism and that sort of stuff, so it was very open. I liked it. St. Christopher only goes up to middle school, yes? Yes. What was that like? What were your friends like? Where you guys hang out outside of school? There was this place called Pistol Pete’s Pizza. A bunch of people, anytime they had a birthday party, they would do it there or the Mini Gran Prix was another place we would go or the mall. My friends were cool. We were friends since kindergarten. Once we started to grow up, we kind of separated. But, no, they were all really good kids. When you went to Bishop Gorman afterwards, did a lot of your classmates also go to Bishop or were you alone there? No. I was kind of a loner. I was extremely shy. Trying to make friends was very hard for me at the time. I remember between classes I would kind of roam around the halls and I would see kids my age or I knew that they were in my class and I’d go up to them, like, “Hey, guys.” I remember distinctly there was this group of kids that were in a circle and I was like, “Oh, what are you guys doing?” trying to make conversation. They kind of talked to me and then one girl turned her back on me and she kind of closed the circle. I’m like, “Oh, all right, I’m going to go.” MONSERATH: Cool, thanks. 7 Seriously. It was horrible. I would just take things so personal. I’m like, oh my God, I’m never going to have friends. Eventually I met my friend and we’re still friends to this day fifteen years later. There was this girl—we were going to math class—and I saw that she had a pamphlet for her quinceañera, and I’m like, well, I’m going to have a quinceañera, too. We have something in common; we’re both Mexican. We can talk. I was like, “Oh, you’re having your quinceañera. When are you having it?” She was like, “I’m having it in July.” And I’m like, “I’m having mine in February. That’s awesome.” We started talking there and that’s what opened it. I think we just got really comfortable with each other. Were you in each other’s court? No, we weren’t, no, no, no. By the time I met her, it would have been too early for my quinceañera and she didn’t really have a court for hers. But I went. We invited each other. We’ve been friends for fifteen years now. BARBARA: Describe your quince dress. It was poufy. Honestly, I don’t want to say I didn’t care, but I wasn’t very picky. Looking back I’m like, I wish I could have had this kind of dress; I wish it was like this kind of dress. But we got it at David’s Bridal. We saw a blue dress that I liked. I didn’t really have a theme. But I saw this blue dress that I liked, but it had this big ole stain on it because it was on the rack. I’m like, okay, never mind. It turned me off to that. I found this one dress with revealing shoulders, but it was very tasteful, but it was really poufy. Then my hair was like a Shirley Temple. I wanted it to be kind of flowy and you have the crown and everything. MONSERRATH: It’s tradition. The curls have to come out just for the iron. 8 Oh. I have long hair and I had long hair back then. My hair was about up to here in curl. She curled the crap out of it. She put so many bobby pins. I remember at the end of the night I was in bed trying to take every single bobby pin out. I had a little pile of bobby pins. Did your scalp hurt? Oh, it hurt so bad just from the pressure of the bobby pins and the crown and everything. It was fun. It was very humble. The ceremony, I didn’t have a bunch of people. It was really close friends and family. Then for the reception, again, it was very small, which is what I liked about it. I didn’t want to have this huge party because I didn’t like so much attention, if that makes sense. Just having that small intimate group was good enough for me. Which aspect of the reception did you enjoy the most? Was it the dance, the shoes? See, we didn’t do the shoes. We didn’t do the shoes or the doll. My favorite part of the whole night—well, we had a chocolate fountain, so that was awesome—but we had a mariachi and I think it was my grandma who suggested that we get them. They were absolutely atrocious. They were the worst mariachi because they were all off key. There is a song called “Mariachi Loco,” Quiero Volar, and anytime I hear that song I hear the trumpets all out of key. It was just so bad. I always think of that. That was probably my favorite part. Of course, you have the dance with your dad and that was very special to me. But as far as funny and ridiculous, that mariachi band. Did you have a court? No. Again, I didn’t have a lot of friends when I was that age, fifteen, and then boys, that was… Were your cousins in it? No. It was just me. That’s okay. It’s your day. What was school like going to private school? Did you identify yourself with any particular groups? 9 In St. Christopher, there was more people of color. There were African Americans, Asians, Latinos, very few white, Caucasian or however you want to call it. When I went to Bishop Gorman, ooh, I was like, where are the other Mexicans? You’re so used to that and you’re like, oh, okay. As far as a group, I don’t think I was really with a particular group. I wasn’t with the Goth kids or the punk kids or theater kids or anything like that. My friend who I mentioned earlier, she never really belonged to a group. I would say it’s miscellaneous because I was friends with some kids who were the Goth or the rockers. Scene. Scene, there you go, emo scene. I had friends who were in musical theater because I was in musical theater. It was just a little hodgepodge, I guess. How did you get into musical theater? I sing. In my freshman year I did choir. Then sophomore through senior year I was in musical theater. Because you couldn’t be in musical theater as a freshman, I did that sophomore through senior and that was fun. I couldn’t dance to save my life. I have zero rhythm. That stereotypical, oh, Latinos know how to dance, no. But we did songs from Cabaret and then songs from the Wizard of Oz, just all Broadway songs. What was your favorite song? It was from Cabaret and it was called “Big Spender.” It was just a sassy little song that I always loved. Do you still love it? Yes. I don’t want to say because everybody will be like, oh God. How did you get into music or how did you start gravitating towards music? As far as singing? 10 In general. I’ve always been a fan of music, particularly rock. I remember when I was about four of five I was watching on TV and there was a song by Nirvana called “Heart-Shaped Box” and the video always freaked me out, but I was intrigued by the music because I loved the music. That’s a song that I love. There is a song by Radiohead called “Paranoid Android” that I saw the music video to. Again, it freaked me out, but I loved the music. Then there was a third one from Soundgarden called “Black Hole Sun.” Same thing, the music video freaked me out as a four-year-old, but I loved the music. Those are the three that I try not to listen too much so I don’t kill it. Very depressing songs. I know. But as a four-year-old, I’m like, oh, this is great. But they’re really good. I like all of those songs as well. Of course, when I got into middle school, I started liking Backstreet Boys and NSYNC and all the pop, like Christina Aguilera and Britney Spears. Then one day my brother was like, “Oh, listen to this song.” It’s a song called “Twist” from the band Korn and it’s just like really…I don’t even know how to describe it. It’s really crazy and kind of odd and the guitars are distorted and it’s really just weird, but I liked it. That’s where the whole rock world kind of opened up for me. I was like, I like Korn; I want to listen to more of it; oh, I like Alice in Chains; oh, I like this, this and this. That’s how I gravitated more towards the rock world and alternative. How much older than you is your brother? Nine years. I think what he wanted to do was he wanted to scare me because it’s such a weird song. It kind of backfired, I guess, and I ended up loving it. Were you guys close at all growing up? 11 To an extent, I guess. I would be seven and he’s seventeen, eighteen, so you can’t really do too much things. But as we grew older that’s when we became a lot closer. I had a great childhood. A lot of my good memories as a kid, he is in all of them. I remember he used to pick me up and wrap me up in a blanket and throw me over his shoulder, kind of like Santa Claus. I think I was in my teens and he tried it again and he was like, “Oh, no, I can’t do this anymore.” But, yes, he did a lot to make my childhood life happy as well. Is he still in Las Vegas? No. He’s in Seattle. Now that I kind of got over my fear of flying, because I hate flying, I hate taking off, I am visiting him a little bit more often. It’s fun. I love Seattle. It’s a very, very pretty city. Far drive, though, so flying is probably better. Yes. Driving is a day or less than a day. It’s not a two-hour drive. It’s not like going to California, five hours, no. When did you get over your fear of flight? Very recently. It was five years ago when I had to fly for work because at my old job I was a promotions director and we were doing something with Disney, and so you can either drive or fly. I was like, well, this is the perfect opportunity for me to fly because it’s going to be free. It’s like a forty-five-minute flight. I’m like, this is a good starter trip. Yes, I hated taking off because I just feel like it’s going to fall. Where would you hang out with your friends when you were in high school, like what part of town would you go to? I would hang out with my friend at her house and we would just usually go to the mall, Fashion Show a lot. Our hangouts were usually at the mall. 12 Would you see a lot of other kids from school at the malls as well when you would go? No, not that I remember. Not that I was like, oh, we have to dodge this person; we don’t want to see anybody. After you graduated Bishop, what happened? Did you go to college? Did you get a job? What was your first job? I went to college first because my parents were like, “No, we want you to focus on your school and then eventually you’ll get a job. Try to get into college and then we’ll go from there.” I went to CSN; that was my first college. Eventually I transferred over to UNLV. In between that time I started my first job over at Lotus Broadcasting. I had an internship course that I needed to take, so I interned at Lotus and then eventually the receptionist left and they were like, “Hey, do you want a job?” I’m like, “Yes. That would be great.” That was my first job. When you went to CSN what campus did you go to? Charleston. Yes, because Cheyenne is kind of close to where your job was then, right? Yes. It wouldn’t have made sense. It would have been such a horrible drive. What side of town did you guys actually end up moving to? Southwest. That would have been a drive for sure. Oh, totally. Other side of town. When you transferred over to UNLV, what did you end up studying? Journalism, media studies. Why did you choose that? 13 When I was over at CSN, I wanted to study music and I’m like, I don’t want to be a teacher, so let me change my major. I was like, I’ll do psychology. I think that’s very stereotypical of students who just go to college, like, I’m going to do psychology. I’m like, I’m not going to— It’s like the default. Yes. I’m like, I’m not going to do anything with this. I was having some trouble and my mom was like, “Well, you like to write. Why don’t you do something with the news or something?” I was like, “Okay.” I went to journalism and that’s when I had to do the internship course. I’m like, I don’t want to go into print because that seems boring to me. I don’t want to do TV because I’m not really interested in TV. Well, let’s do radio because at least I’ll be around music. That’s how things just fell into place. Were you part of KUNV? No. I had a friend who was. He was in the morning show for KUNV, but I didn’t do it. At that time when I transferred to UNLV, I was already at Lotus and at that time I had a gig on Saturday mornings over at KOMP. I was like, I’m already kind of here, so I don’t want to put added things, like, oh, I have to do this and I have to do…I was like, let me focus on school because that’s stressful enough and then I’ll just do my receptionist and on-air gig, so I’ll learn that way. You were on air in essentially broadcast while you were still at school? Yes. How did that happen? Again, it was because I got hired as a receptionist, so I was still in school. Lotus was very lenient. They were like, “You need to focus on school.” That’s always been the whole message from everybody is focus on school. Luckily, they hired me as a receptionist and I was still going to school and then eventually I went from receptionist and also on-air talent. 14 How did that happen? It took me a couple of months, but I got the courage to ask the program director for a comp. I was like, “Hey, I’m interested in being on air. Would you mind listening to some of my air checks?” What I would do to record those air checks—it would be basically a demo—what I did to record it is I would go into my closet because that was kind of sound proof and I would play music and have my recorder. Then I would stop the music and then I would talk, so it kind of sounded kind of smooth. I had this demo and I gave it to him and I was like, “Hey, can you listen to this?” He listened to it and he critiqued me. He was like, “Keep this, what you’re doing, but then also fix this. Maybe you want to record your air checks at the studio.” On Saturdays I would go into the production studios and just record. That’s how I spent my Saturdays. BARBARA: I’m curious. You describe yourself as a really shy person and all of this. How did you transcend that shyness into this— Oh, I’m still shy. Okay, I’ll try to believe that. Do you see where I’m going? Is that opposites or does that make sense is that radio is a medium that works well for shy people? You see what I’m kind of asking? What’s your thoughts about that? Yes. Actually, a lot of people in radio aren’t that shy; it’s just me. I’m pretty sure there are other shy people. I think for me it works because I’m not in front of the camera and there are not a lot of people looking. That kind of overwhelms me a little bit. But now that I’m in radio I have to do videos because that’s how radio is evolving. It’s not just radio. It’s social media and then videos. I ended up being on camera anyway. When you have to do a job, you put anxiety and shyness in the back of your mind and don’t right about it. I have to do a job right now and that’s how that kind of goes away. 15 I’m pretty shy, too, but I can communicate a lot better with people if it’s one on one or a small group. The more people involved, the more reserved and I tend to shy away. Do you think that’s the case, maybe, with you as well? No, because there are times when I would have to introduce a band and there is a butt load of people. The last time I had to introduce a band was Muse at Mandalay Bay Events Center, so that’s a lot of people. I was with a coworker, but still as far as shyness you just have to put that in the back of your mind. Again, okay, I have to do this. When I get too nervous, I’m like, well, I have to do this because what else am I going to do, be at home? That’s not fun. That’s another trick that I tell myself to beat that shyness and beat the anxiety. What was that like, introducing Muse? Muse is my all-time favorite band. I love Muse. My program director was cool enough to be like, “Hey, we get to introduce Muse together.” I got to meet them, too. That was awesome, just being able to introduce a band that you love to a bunch of people who also love the same band. It was a rush when I got to say, “In a couple of minutes, Muse.” And there was this uproar of people. That was fricking awesome. Tell me more about your time at Lotus. You got into broadcasting at KOMP, right? Yes. What happened after? How did that evolve into your first on-air job, let’s say? It took a couple of months because it wasn’t just like that [snapping]. I had to go back and forth and tell my program director, “Hey, can you listen to this? Is it better or is it worse? Do I need to work on stuff?” Eventually he said, “This Saturday at six in the morning you are going to babysit the radio station board, so you’re going to be there from six to ten.” Or however many hours it was. He was like, “You’re going to do that and you’re going to babysit the station board and then 16 for one hour you can crack the mic, but then the rest you’re board operating.” I’m like, “Okay.” A couple of Saturdays it was like, “One hour you can open the mic.” Then, “Okay, now you can do two hours you can open the mic.” It progressed that way. Eventually I did four hours. I was doing it for a couple of months and I’m like, I guess this is my shift now; I get to do this. What was it like the first time you got to do it? My first break, God, I wish I had a recording of it because it was so bad. What happened was I was still really unsure; I didn’t want to touch anything; I didn’t want to break anything; I didn’t want to press a button that would skip a couple of songs or play everything at once, because that’s happened before. I was like, okay, I’m just going to turn on the mic and kind of turn it up, but I didn’t turn down the music. You would hear me a couple of seconds, like, “Hey, it’s KOMP 92.3, the rock station,” and then you just hear the music because it’s so loud because I didn’t turn down the music. How long were you at KOMP? On air, I think I started 2010, so I was on for seven years on KOMP and I think with the company total eight years, seven or eight years. It was a pretty long time. During the weekdays I did reception and then eventually got promoted to promotions, but I was still doing KOMP. Then eventually they gave me a one-hour show on La Buena 101.9, which is our Spanish station. I was doing two air shifts on a Saturday. Did you grow up speaking Spanish? No. That’s why I was like, oh crap. With La Buena I always wrote down what I was going to say because I didn’t trust my Spanish at all. I wrote it down. I was so scared because my accent, you can hear what is called pocha because I’m a Mexican born in America and you can hear that accent that you do not speak it very well or you don’t speak it often. I was like, oh my God, I 17 hope these people don’t tear me apart. No, luckily they were very…It’s very hard to translate your personality from one active rock station to a station that’s Mexican music and it’s an older generation. It was kind of challenging, but I think I was able to do it. I would have a couple of people call and be like, “We can hear that you’re trying