Music, Rock

Behind the Voice: Jose Mangin bleeds metal as heart and soul of SiriusXM’s rock channels

Jose Mangin got his first taste of metal as a kindergartner with Motley Crue’s Shout at the Devil. As a sixth grader, the self-described “little devil worshiper” went to his first Anthrax concert. And it was in high school that Mangin first met Pantera’s Dimebag Darrell, who treated him like “he was the president.”

Those early childhood moments would ultimately shape Mangin’s future.

“My whole life is metal. Everything I do is metal,” says the 39-year-old SiriusXM personality who helped launch the company’s hard rock department, including Liquid Metal (Ch. 40) and Octane (Ch. 37). “It’s not a job for me, it’s my life. Everything I listened to back then and now is on this channel. It’s stuff that I know will sound cool when you’re driving in your car. I want everyone to head bang!”

Covered with tattoos, piercings and rocking an Affliction T-shirt, the Mexican-American who is dubbed SiriusXM’s Metal Ambassador describes his channels as his “third child” and an “extension of his life.”

“Having a Mexican in charge of the biggest rock channels in the world is pretty cool,” Mangin says. “It’s a channel based on being a massive fan of the music. If you’re a fan of heavy music … this is the end all be all.”

As Mangin makes his way through the hallways of the SiriusXM studios in New York City, it’s like watching a rock star walking around backstage. Everyone — seriously, everyone — stops to hug or chat with the “Satanic Hispanic.” The conversations always vary, but one thing is constant, everyone knows this man bleeds metal.

“Metal is big. Metal is for life,” he says. “There is a bond between all of us … it crosses generations and personalities.”

It’s been 16 years since Mangin became the driving force and voice behind Liquid Metal. He has transcended into a prominent figure in the metal world, recently being named the 9th most influential person in the metal world by an industry publication.

But for anyone who really gets to know him, you quickly learn that Mangin wears many different hats in life.

He’s a husband. With a grin from ear to ear and an endearing twinkle in his eyes, he talks about how he met his wife 17 years ago when she was interning at TVT Records, where they both worked. It was love at first sight. A week after they met, they moved in together. They were married about nine months later.

“She signed up for it. … She’s a big metalhead. If she wasn’t, I couldn’t be with her,” Mangin says. “She’s more into it now than ever before. Our life is becoming more metal every day.”

He’s a father. His daughters, ages 13 and 10, have been raised by the “power of heavy music,” growing up in a house where rocking out to Anthrax and Pantera in the basement was the norm. And Mangin is that metal dad found cheering on his daughter at her cheerleading competitions while wearing a T-shirt with the team’s colors.

He’s a businessman. Sponsored by Mexican beer maker, Modelo, and co-owner of Riazul premium tequila and rock ‘n roll clothing company Affliction, Mangin proves he’s more than just a man with a voice for radio. He’s the face of these companies.

He’s a man on the go. Always on to the next event or epic interview — whether it’s hosting an exclusive Korn concert in L.A., laying down guest vocals on Suicide Silence’s latest song, introducing Metallica at Yankee Stadium or interviewing the legendary Ozzy Osbourne.

It’s all in a day’s work for the rocker who once sat in chemistry classes at the University of Arizona and attended the University of Tennessee for graduate school, pursuing a pharmacy degree.

“I’m a chemistry guy, but my heart has always been metal,” says Mangin, who began his on-air career working at his college radio station.

Then it happened. After winning an award for his on-air skills, the offers to work in the music industry started pouring in. So with $40,000 in student loan debt, he left his aspirations of becoming a pharmacist on the table and moved to New Jersey to begin his new career. It wasn’t long until he was hired by SiriusXM to launch the rock department.

Now, one of the most important things for Mangin is being a role model in the metal world.

“I want everyone to see what a good, positive metal person does. I want to spew out positivity,” Mangin says. “I really want people to feel good about listening to metal today. They decided to come here to the channel, and I’m going to make sure they are like ‘Yes! This is fucking cool. I’m glad I’m with this dude on this cool metal journey.’”

Rock out with Mangin on Liquid Metal (Ch. 40) and Octane (Ch. 37) from 10 am to 10 pm ET Monday through Friday. 

The monthly series Behind the Voice profiles SiriusXM hosts in one-on-one interviews and gives listeners a closer look into our on-air personalities and their shows.

For a free 30-day trial, check out http://www.siriusxm.com/freetrial/blog

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