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Meet Jalon Sanford of Jaelon in Del Amo, Carson

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jalon Sanford.

Jalon, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
Well, I’d like to say the beginning of my creative journey began in high school. For so long, I felt oppressed at home and at school and seeing as how those are the only two places I was allowed to go until high school, I didn’t have an outlet because I was under the impression nobody cared. But somehow, I’ve managed to maintain peak optimism, so much so that after the number of poems I wrote prior to my plight, I decided it was about time someone heard one. I didn’t have the courage to recite one in front of my family, however I heard of a poetry club at my school and figured that now was as good a time as any. I performed my poem in front of about 15 to 20 people. I didn’t think much of it, at the time I didn’t think much of myself for the majority of my life, much less the things that I created when I got sad. After my poem, the crowd of 15-20 came to sound like a crowd of a hundred! I didn’t know what to do, so I both laughed and cried. The feeling was something surreal.

Truthfully, I have mascoting to thank for my sudden urge to blossom open myself to such a vulnerable yet flourishing state. It changed my life forever and for the better. It allowed me to expand socially and creatively. It gave me a canvas and a pedestal. So many people looked up to me and I didn’t even know it. I started mascoting my junior year, the same year I began to slowly creep my creative prowess into the world. With mascoting, I was able to be myself in a state where I can make people smile, being that that’s what I want my overall occupation to be. I fell in love with how much I loved myself and how comfortable I became with who I was. I started writing more poetry, expanding my topics, getting real up close & personal with it. It was only a matter of time that I branched into poetry I guess seeing as how I wanted to be an actor. Being upfront and centre was always something I dreamed of. I digress. Over time I wanted to expand, I wanted to get my name and poetry out there.

So I started to record myself performing my poems in my room and posting them on Instagram. Before long people were reposting them and I had a light buzz. I was so happy I didn’t know what to do with myself. However, I’d be lying to you if I told you that the process was a breeze. I’d be lying if I told you there weren’t nights that the majority of my poems didn’t stem from immense heartbreak, loss, and overall unbearable pain. No one coddled me and told me things were going to be okay. Nobody held my hand when things got rough, especially emotionally & mentally. I came in my room, sat down, and wrote my pain away. Again, I digress. Shortly after I began posting my poetry on Instagram, a friend of mine referred me to go to a poetry slam in Fairfax. It wasn’t necessarily a slam but more of a lounge. Da Poetry Lounge to be precise. I was able to grow so much there every Tuesday night and as about a year or so passed, and before I knew it, my few poems turned into that of a library. I decided to create a book, not for any specific reason, but mainly because I wanted to inspire as well as showcase my talents.

Around the end of 2019, I decided to release the book and I sold five books and I’m pretty proud of that. Since these events, I’ve been able to branch off into music as I’ve been dropping some on SoundCloud and definitely have a lot more coming this year. I’ve also been able to branch off into my show called Demo Reel with my lifetime friend Kyle P. Davis who has given my life more meaning than I can imagine. We’ve created something not only for ourselves but for those like us. We have an outlet and a pedestal to put our thoughts and creativity upon and so far, we’ve only dabbed the corner with a small amount of paint. The advancements I’ve made in my music, my poetry, my acting and so much more are only gateways and doorways to worlds of creativity and growth that I have yet to finish.

Has it been a smooth road?
If Indiana Jones was able to easily obtain what he seemed to so desperately want, then the movies wouldn’t be so long. Much less would there be more than one movie. What that means is, the most valuable things are the hardest to obtain so I’m not unfamiliar with hardships and obstacles in this process that I’m falling in love with. Just to name a few, I’ve come across self-doubt, relentlessly battled with insecurity. A lot of my problems stemmed from within. Worrying so much about opinion and not keeping steady focus on the factual. A lot of my poetry comes from the amount of pain I’ve managed to accrue over time. You’d better believe there were times I cried myself to sleep over a heartbreak. However, my older brother told me that I should use my pain to my benefit. With that, I’ve become impervious to allowing myself to acquiesce fall under the menial circumstances of a heartbreak. I learned to take everything around me and use it creatively. I learned that life isn’t about what we go through, it’s how we react and deal with what we go through, good or bad. If anyone tells you that their creative journey was a breeze, they’re lying.

We’d love to hear more about your work and what you are currently focused on. What else should we know?
Currently I’m focusing my life on my music. Music has always played an essential role in my life and has brought me to a number of different epiphanies and life changing decisions by listening alone. I put my heart into my music and my heart is severely damaged as to why in a lot of my songs, you hear me talking about it. I’ve been writing poetry nonstop so and that’s never going to cease. In a way, poetry opened a gateway to music for me. Other than that, you can always find me working on my youtube show DEMO REEL with Kyle Davis and Ethan Hightower. As I said, we started a production company and we’re working on expanding drastically. The passion we put into film and television is parallel, we’ve worked countless hours, day & night to get as far as we’ve gotten and if you tune in to theDAMPERgroup on youtube, then you’ll be sure to find me continuously making relentless efforts to create an environment for creatives to flourish and shine through comedy and randomness.

How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
The industry is in its beginning stages of immense change. More technology means more ideas are being brought to life, different sounds and creations for people to ponder whether or not they’re gonna follow it. No one likes to sit around and watch other people do exactly what they’re doing. The industry is taking dives unnecessarily due to the lack of genuine love from artists to other artists. I see many more people coming into the industry and making some real noise because of what’s being normalized and what people are becoming interested in. It can definitely go either way though. It’s clear that there’s an imbalance in moral codes and realness in people in the industry, and it shows. For as hard as i’m working, I see the industry flipping on its head.

Pricing:

  • To Last a Lifetime: A Poetry Book by Jalon Sanford $4.99

Contact Info:

  • Phone: 4242286887
  • Email: jalonsanford@gmail.com
  • Instagram: @imjaelon

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