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Audio visual technician by day, rock star by night

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New Cosumnes River College audio visual technician James Lovett can not only set up any event, but also liven them up with his own music.

Lovett was exposed to music at a young age and credits that to his love of music.

“Back in those days, parents didn’t use babysitters, so they took you to the bar with them,” Lovett said. “They gave me money to play with the jukebox, it was right when Ray Charles was coming out and I was hooked.”

Soon after falling in love with music, Lovett started to get into the audio and visual side of technology. At CRC, Lovett assists in the support of all audio and video systems, such as projectors, amplifiers and new system integrations, he said.

Lovett said he really enjoys his job at CRC and likes how friendly everyone is.

“There is a real energy to this place,” he said.

After playing jazz guitar for almost 30 years, Lovett switched to keyboards and started playing for his current band Groovethang.

“Keyboardists in this town work,” he said. “You got a million guitarists and you have like three keyboardists.”

Although guitar to keyboard is a big transition, Lovett has a few skills that made the switch a little easier.

“I knew enough about harmonic theory that I could weave my way around things,” he said. “Being a tech I can program keyboards and come up with the sounds that are pretty close to the records, and I think that’s one of the things killing the keyboardists around here, is they’ll just use stock patches.”

Lovett said he really enjoys playing with this band and that “there are no major egos, everyone does their homework and comes in prepared.”

Lovett would not categorize Groovethang as any sort of genre of music.

“It started as a dance band, but now we’re a variety band because we cover southern rock, classic rock, latin, dance, disco and hard rock,” he said.

Playing live shows is one of the bands best traits, and they love doing it, Lovett said.
In 2010, the band played at the Fountains in Roseville in front of a crowd of more than 300 people.

“As a musician, you always wonder what it would be like to play in front of your screaming friends and this was it, those people were screaming and yelling and dancing to every song we played,” Lovett said.

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Audio visual technician by day, rock star by night