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Meet Vivian Rayos of Switchboard Management

Today we’d like to introduce you to Vivian Rayos.

Hi Vivian, so excited to have you on the platform. So before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today?
My career started in February of 2021. It had been nine months post graduating college, and I had a journalism degree with no sense of what to do or where to go. Graduating college during a pandemic was not easy, there were a lot of unknowns at the time and very limited open job positions. I was applying to what little jobs were offering remote positions in anything broadcast journalism or music management related but wasn’t getting a single call back. During this time a band I had previously interviewed on my college radio podcast had reached out to me and asked if I’d be interested in meeting with them and possibly managing them. I had previous internship experience working at a management company and a ton of radio experience interviewing bands, and thought, why not? I had enjoyed my time interning at a management company, and I had a deep love for indie music and the indie scene. Here was an indie band looking for help in elevating their career that kind of landed on my lap during a time of uncertainty in everything.

I took the meeting with The Voxes and wrote out a roadmap of what managing them would look like. Two weeks later, they had signed my management contract. During our first meeting, I looked at all five of them and said, “If I’m going to manage you, I’m going to do it the right way. I’m going to open up my own company. I’m going to send you a contract and sign you to Switchboard. Are you sure you’re serious and this is what you want?” and they all looked at me and said yes. The second they signed that contract I filed the paperwork to open Switchboard Management in March of 2021. Today I’m a little over a year into running Switchboard and it’s been the most fulfilling experience of my life. Not only do I love the band that I get to manage, but I love what I do. In the year we’ve been working together, we put out a debut album, recorded a full-production live session, have played countless shows, and are working on getting them to play festivals.

We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
It has not been a smooth road, there have definitely been some challenges along the way. Managing five guys was a big adjustment for me. I didn’t have any brothers growing up, and I very quickly gained five at the same time. I remember having a “what did I just get myself into” moment at first. Once I got to know each one of them individually and on a personal level, it was easier to step into the role of telling five grown men what to do. It definitely took a couple of months of feeling comfortable with one another and some trial & error on how this new relationship/dynamic was going to work but once we figured it out, it’s been smooth sailing ever since. I feel very lucky to share a mutual respect & also closeness with one another. There’s a big bond between The Voxes and I now.

Another struggle I have dealt with is that the music industry is very white male-dominated. Latino’s currently only make up fourteen percent of all artist managers. I’m in a very small pool of Latina artist managers. A lot that I’ve learned in my industry has been self-taught and through paving my own way. There’s a lot of Latinx creatives and musicians but many of them are not being represented by Latinx bookers, managers, PR personnel, and that frustrates me. A lot of work goes into developing an artist’s career that I don’t think the average person realizes it takes an entire team to create a successful artist. We need more Latinx people stepping into these really important and vital roles. It’s definitely challenging stepping into a room where people automatically assume I’m a band member’s girlfriend, and I have to explain that I’m actually their manager. I tend to be the only female in a room full of males in a lot of situations. Although I’m comfortable with it, I would love to see more women of color sitting in the same room having a seat at the same table.

Appreciate you sharing that. What should we know about Switchboard Management?
Switchboard Management is an independent artist management company that specializes in growing the careers of indie/alternative artists. I currently run and manage the company by myself. Through Switchboard, I’ve started producing my own shows creating Switchboard Presents. This has allowed me to throw shows all over Los Angeles with different types of indie bands. Not only am I a full-time manager, but I also get to be a booker whenever I feel like throwing a show.

I’m currently partnering with a local San Fernando Valley non-profit organization called 11:11 Projects to throw my first ever mini festival called Switch Fest. The fest is taking place on May 21st and features a lineup of four local Valley and Los Angeles based Latinx artists & bands. My ultimate goal is to create an Echo Park rising type of event in the San Fernando Valley.

Brand-wise, I’m most proud of all the amazing opportunities that came out of opening Switchboard Management. I now have Switchboard Presents and Switch Fest which organically came out of SB Management. A year ago today, I never thought any of this would come from opening a management company. I’m slowly building my own version of a Switchboard empire at 24 years old.

Alright so before we go can you talk to us a bit about how people can work with you, collaborate with you or support you?
People can support me by attending any Switchboard Presents shows and of course buying tickets to my first ever Switch Fest. Bands interested in looking for management can reach me through the contact forum on the switchboard management website or by simply messaging me on Switchboard’s Instagram account which is @switchboardmanagement.

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Image Credits
Evan Lopez

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