Bushwick Music Studios launched its first annual Do-It-Yourself Music Festival yesterday evening. With about 150 bands in nine different venues, the shows run March 24-27 and provide the artistic Brooklyn neighborhood a local alternative to the South by Southwest Festival in Austin.
“The nature of the neighborhood gave me the idea,” said Tito Ladd, who runs Bushwick Music Studios and organized the festival. “It seemed inevitable. It needed to happen.”
David E Beats and the White House Band played an energetic set at BMS at 9. He blends hip-hop with rock and electronica, rapping and playing guitar over strong bass chords. At 10, Jennings (Mary Jennings), a singer/songwriter/pianist with a powerful, expressive voice and simple piano melodies, performed at Eastern District art gallery. Meanwhile, at Brooklyn Fire Proof, Bern and the Brights, a five-member band performed. The singer, Bernadette Malavarca, had a wide-ranging, emotional voice that harmonized beautifully over the band’s catchy melodies.
Back at BMS, Shinobi Ninja played a fun, high-energy set, captivating the packed crowd with their combination of hip-hop, punk, soul, and other styles. The singers, Baby Girl and Dave Aaron, had a tight chemistry, leading the audience to sing along, stamp their feet, and jump and dance endlessly. And the band’s guitarist, bassist, drummer and DJ showed off their chops as they launched into flashy solos. The colorfully-dressed band’s wild energy, fun rock beats and captivating grooves gave no signs that they had just driven 34 hours from Austin to play the festival.
Not Blood, Paint performed at Brooklyn Fire Proof at midnight. Their songs were theatrical, carefully choreographed and cerebral, but with strong dynamics and tempo changes, they were also moody and dramatic. Laden with tight harmonies and strong guitar, their dramatic performances are not to be missed.
Stay tuned throughout the week for more updates!