All work, no play

All work, no play
Up-and-coming photographer Jerome Love is a true go-getter.
Jamie Santiago | Guest Writer |
December 8th, 2010

Freelance photographer and City College student Jerome Love works at Sacramento News & Review, specializing in portraiture and shooting music bands. Photo by || Kimberly Washington ||

Most 20 year olds mainly worry about the midterm they’re having next week or what their plans are for the weekend.

Most 20 year olds don’t have to worry about working a full-time job, establishing a career as a photographer or completing homework for six classes.

Describing Jerome Love as an overachiever would be an understatement. Love goes to school full time, and then some, works the graveyard shift full time at a halfway house for adults with mental illnesses, and is a full-time photographer who has big plans for his future.

“I sleep like four to five hours a day,” Love says. “I try to work around my schedule as best as possible.”

In the past, Love has shot for local bands, traveled and taken pictures at the Vans Warped Tour, a music and extreme
sports festival that travels nationwide, and spent three months in Africa working as a photojournalist for a non-profit organization.

Anthony Calisterio, Love’s good friend of five years, thinks Love has done a lot more than any other 20 year old.  “He’s always been on top of everything,” Calisterio says. “He doesn’t do something unless he does it all the way. ”

Love’s track record speaks to this.

Currently he is shooting for the Sacramento News & Review and for Toro, a local company that sells quality biking goods.

“I’ll see whatever comes my way and try to get it done,” Love says. “I probably get around two to three jobs a month.”

Love says he enjoyed his experience as a long-term photojournalist in Africa but prefers a more personable
approach to photography.

“Whether it’s this gnarly brain surgeon and he’s just crazy about brains…or the next up-and-coming band, or if it’s just this incredible humanitarian who’s saved millions of lives through simple water relief, or if it’s just a kid in the neighborhood who started a community center,” Love says, “those are the stories I want to tell visually.”

As Love talks about his aspirations for photography, one can see past this busy, hard-working 20 year old. He seems to have a lot more wisdom, humility, and earnestness than the average young adult.

Love’s City College ethics professor, Elizabeth Forrester, calls Love a commendable person and notices how conscientious and thoughtful he is in class.

“He seems to be in school to expand his knowledge and become a truly educated person—not just to get a job or bide time,” Forrester says.

Love has his week strategically planned out. A typical day is scheduled something like this: Start work at 11:30 p.m., squeeze in some homework for a communications class, get home at 8 a.m., sleep for five hours, go to class until 3 p.m., take a break, run errands, or work on photography, and go to class again until the evening.

Even though Love says he can get stressed out with so much on his plate, he is philosophical about his life.

“I think it’s important to build on your strengths,” Love says. “I think we spend so much time looking at our weaknesses and beating ourselves up for what we can’t do well. But why not highlight what you can do well and build on that?”

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Thurs, May 5, Portugal the Man

Harlow’s, 6:30 p.m., call for cover


This article was published on 04.28.11.

Portugal the Man’s sound has evolved since it released the post-emo-rock Waiter: “You Vultures!” in 2006. Within a matter of years, it’s become a little more difficult to describe the band’s sound, yet it’s gained a hefty following to augment the original emo-scene fans. Its newest album, American Ghetto, mixes together jazzy sounds and psychedelic-funk melodies and proves to be a progression from previous albums. By listening to the band’s catalog of music, it’s no doubt that Portugal the Man continues to challenge and reinvent itself, and the next album, due in May, will surely be a treat. 2708 J Street,

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Sat, April 2, A…

Sat, April 2, A Lot Like Birds

Ace of Spades, 6 p.m., $10


This article was published on 03.31.11.

A Lot Like Birds will be bringing head-nodding, mosh-pit-starting music to Ace of Spades, playing alongside Green Audio, Twenty Days with Julian, Ember Beside Us and the Astral Effect. This local seven-piece released its post-hardcore debut Plan B in 2009, and ever since then, has built up a following and taken flight. Winners of the 2010 Sammies, A Lot Like Birds proves that dissonant sounds, screamo vocals and catchy guitar melodies can create an unusual harmony. Besides, the band’s onstage antics will keep you entertained, and the guys actually knImageow what the hell they’re doing. 1417 R Street,

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 Sat, March 19…


 Sat, March 19, Tera Melos
TownHouse Lounge, 9 p.m., $7


This article was published on 03.17.11.

Sacramento-based Tera Melos came a long way since its start in 2004. According to Alternative Press magazine, its debut, Complex Full of Phantoms, released by Los Angeles label Sargent House in 2005, was one of the year’s most overlooked albums. With Patagonian Rats released in 2010 and a U.S. tour alongside New York-based singer and guitarist Marnie Stern, the band will be bringing its atypical, complex guitar melodies and electronic-pop sound to the TownHouse on Saturday. Elements of rock and electronic beats with jazzy undertones create an intense, dreamlike atmosphere for the audience to bathe in. 1517 21st Street,

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Ugly sweaters, tight pants

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This article was published on 12.16.10.

Is that that guy from American Pie? And singing a duet with Autumn Sky? Why, yes: Thomas Ian Nicholas, a man with three first names, gigged Naked Lounge Downtown last Saturday.


Wear your holiday worst:
Truth be told, I’ve never actually been to a bad-holiday-sweater party. But I’m quite intrigued as to which of the five performers at this Friday-night gig will take home the prize of ugliest damned Xmas sweater: Chris Twomey, Dean Haakenson of Be Brave Bold Robot (playing with full band), Ken Burnett or Adam Varona of the Inversions? If I had to put money on it, I’d bet on Haakenson, as he’s a man with a vision who’s sure to deliver some tacky-ass threads. Though I won’t underestimate Twomey, either. Or, hell, maybe I’ll have the best dang sweater? Find out this Friday, December 17, at the Fox & Goose, 1001 R Street; $5. (Nick Miller)

Lord of the ball-squeezing falsettos:
I’m certain my wife and I were the only Sacramentans present at the recent Blind Guardian show in San Francisco at the hallowed Regency Ballroom. It’d be a good guess, as there were (maybe) around 300 metalheads in an area that safely holds three times as much on a good night. Even the balcony was closed. WTF?

Either way, as my luck would have it, her favorite band is Blind Guardian, that plays a brand of music that I, out of sheer hate, have dubbed “Mordor metal.” What is that? If you took the elements of Dungeons & Dragons, Lord of the Rings and all the bombastic, unnecessary singalong choruses you could (or couldn’t stomach), this would be the ungodly result.

As luck would have it, Holy Grail, a Pasadena-based five-piece old-school outfit, replete with ball-squeezing falsettos, was the highlight of the night. Touring in support of their latest release, Crisis in Utopia, these lads came out swinging to the near empty room with a dual guitar assault that would make any mom proud. James Paul Luna ran around the middle of their allotted stage (they’re openers, you know?) screaming at the top of his lungs, only pausing for brief interims to head-bang.

What about the headliner? Blind Guardian took the stage, and its drummer was shirtless before the first song even started. Enough said. (Eddie Jorgensen)

Pizza-parlor mosh pit:
A crowd of guys—and two or three girls—wearing either plaid shirts and polos, emo glasses or uncomfortably tight pants, Vans or Chuck Taylors, and all with disheveled long hair, waited eagerly at the foot of Luigi’s Fun Garden’s stage for A Lot Like Birds.

The openers of the show—local bands So Stressed, the Speed of Sound in Seawater, and Oregon-based Duck. Little Brother, Duck!—managed to get a few shy head bobs at the beginning of the show. And the lineup was a pretty good mix: the Speed of Sound in Seawater boasted upbeat melodies and catchy bass lines; Duck. Little Brother, Duck!’s emo-rock instrumentals and memorable vocals, comparable to Taking Back Sunday’s Adam Lazzara, kept me interested and genuinely head-bobbing along with the crowd.

But when A Lot Like Birds’ Cory Lockwood’s scream vocals filled the room, a mosh pit was already in the making. The ridiculously long changeover almost had me indifferent by the last set, but A Lot Like Birds’ first song converted. Lockwood’s onstage antics, Ben Wiacek’s guitar skills and the stage presence of the entire band created an epic atmosphere.

The witty banter among the band’s members and some random guy’s failed attempt to crowd-surf were entertaining, but A Lot Like Birds’ ending performance was definitely the cherry on top. (Jamie Santiago)

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City College student killed in Second Saturday shooting

By Jamie Santiago

Brown Issues club members reflect on the death of club co-founder Victor Hugo Perez Zavala Sept. 14. Photo by Vincent Fernandez.

A City College student was killed and three others were injured after a shooting that took place during Second Saturday, a popular art walk in Midtown Sacramento, Sept. 12.

Victor Hugo Perez Zavala, a sociology and international relations major, was an innocent bystander caught in the middle of crossfire at this weekend’s Second Saturday, according to the police.  He died three days before what would have been his 25th birthday.

The shooting took place shortly after midnight at J Street between 18th and 19th streets.

Zavala made a big impact on City College campus as a founding member of the Brown Issues club.  He was in the Puente club and also played the lead role in a film City College English instructor Travis Silcox wrote and produced in 2008. The film, “AB 540” examines how a bill passed by the state Legislature allowing undocumented immigrants to pay in-state tuition affected a City College student.

“When I heard it was Hugo that had been shot and killed, I couldn’t believe it,” Silcox said. “He was the type of student that was always there if you needed a hand.”

Zavala’s younger brother Ricardo said in a Sacramento Bee interview that he didn’t expect anything like this to happen since Zavala was never involved in bad activities.

According to friends and family members, though Zavala sometimes sported a tough demeanor he was a kind person, a family man intent on finishing up a college degree and staying out of trouble.

Brown Issues club member Jacquelyn Vargas said Zavala was a consummate hard worker and lived up to his personal motto: ‘Get work done or get out.’

Vargas said that Zavala’s death will encourage other Brown Issues club members to step up and fill the void.

“I think more than anything it will motivate us to do more,” Vargas said. “Once a leader leaves,  you don’t have to replace him—not necessarily, but more people have to take over some of the projects that he had.”

Zavala worked part-time at the State Department of Managed Health Care, helping people with insurance issues and also for his father’s landscaping business.  He performed as a disc jockey at family parties and enjoyed Mexican music.

Zavala graduated from Luther Burbank High School in 2004 and planned to attend UC Riverside after graduating from City College in 2011.

“He brought warmth to the [“AB540”] set and sensitivity and groundedness,” Silcox said. “ This is a young man, 24, who was very grounded, unflappable.

Zavala is survived by his six younger siblings and his parents.

A candlelit vigil for Zavala will be held today, Sept. 14, at 8 p.m. between 18th and J streets to remember his life and celebrate his birthday.

To watch Zavala play lead in the short film “AB540,” click here.

Reporters contributing to this article: Vincent Fernandez, Christopher Geanakos, Libby Parenti, Michael Saechao and Amy Wong.

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