The New York music scene is full of an extremely eclectic and never-ending variety of genres, artists, and venues—and each has their own sense of community. The Brooklyn DIY community is no exception. All of the bands and bills are all so integrated that you find strangers who have become friends, and friends who have become family. The We Color Live and Pickthorn team, led by Jocelyn Simone and Chelsey Pickthorn, are extremely active and a large part of the punk rock garage music scene in Brooklyn. They continuously support, create content, and build and bring out confidence in so many amazing musicians, not only in Brooklyn but across the country.
This past year, the community watched as Chelsey went through and defeated breast cancer, and I have got to say, it was incredible to see how the community came together to support her. It was beautiful to see the number of shows bands put together to raise funds for medical costs, the amount of awareness that was spread, and how many of my friends I saw rocking Chelsey's merch. It was proof to me that people are good, we can support one another in times of darkness and unite.
Now, Chelsey and Jocelyn are hosting the 5th edition of Color Me Bushwick this weekend in Brooklyn at the salon Pickthorn BK . The event will feature 23 dope bands across three days, each of which will receive a new 'do before they hit the stage. I had the privilege of talking with these badass ladies.
Tell me a little bit about CMB. Why did you guys decide to start it?
Jocelyn: We started Color Me Bushwick in 2013 in conjunction with Bushwick Open Studios. It shows our idea of what art is across the board; we decided to showcase our clients' talent in any and all mediums. Years followed where we found talent and offered them a new look before performing at Color Me Bushwick, which to this day showcases where we have grown in artist development and expanding the network of community.
What is the mission of CMB?
Jocelyn: WE COLOR LIVE + Pickthorn both dedicate themselves to elevating the experience for artists as well as the audience. Supporting methods of expression and collaboration, growth and creativity, we cultivate a talented community of loyalty and love, which is shown through the Color Me Bushwick weekend.
Have you noticed changes in performances and confidence in the performers you people have styled? Why do you think it is important to pair performance with style?
Chelsey: I absolutely see a new confidence in the musicians that undergo transformations. I believe it allows them to feel a new creative vision of themselves as well a way to inspire growth. I believe the same thing in day-to-day clients, but feel that We Color Live is about harvesting young talent and allowing them a space to experiment with their new look at Color Me BUSHWICK.
So this year has been an incredibly trying and difficult one I am sure, but the Brooklyn music community really came together to be in your corner. How does it feel to know that you've made such big impact in your community?
Chelsey: This past year has been a whirlwind. The support of our community is in part what I believe enabled my strong recovery. It’s amazing how people respond to difficulty. People you never imagine or thought come out of the woodwork to whatever they can.
What kind of advice do you have for someone who is going through difficult times? I mean, it is kind of crazy to me that in the midst of everything you went through, you still managed to always be smiling, working, and getting CMB ready in full swing You are an incredible inspiration to me.
Chelsey: Thank you so much. In my life, I have had many experiences with many of my friends and clients. I do believe this allows me to offer a hand, ear or heart from experience. When I can I try to offer it to those around me when they most need it. We can only do our best and lean on those in times of hardship. It was very important to me to not allow my health affect my work and passions. Creating an experience like Color Me BUSHWICK is what keeps me excited and inspired.
The three-day festival will feature 23 badass bands who will once again come together to support one another and celebrate life through music. And while you listen, you can get live hair services, flash tats, snap some pics in the photobooth, or enjoy a rub-down. Take a listen to the music below:
Friday, June 15
9pm Jennifer Vanilla
8pm Rachel Angel
7pm New Myths
6pm Them Fangs
5pm Hot Curl
Saturday, June 16
9pm HNRY FLWR
8pm Jackie Mendoza
7pm The Nuclears
6pm Belle Mare
5pm The Ferdy Mayne
4pm Ishmael levi
3pm NO SWOON
Sunday, June 17
9pm Grim Streaker
7pm The Midnight Hollow
6pm Marcela Avelina
5pm God Tiny
3pm Rebel Magik
photos provided by We Color Live
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Janeth Ann Gonda is currently the events and promotions manager at BUST Magazine, a singer, dancer, writer, and event planner living in Brooklyn, NY. She is currently the lead singer in the Gypsy Witch Rock Band Espejismo. After working in the Brooklyn music industry for several years she created her own event space Barranquilla Studios. Janeth has hosted hundreds of bands and fans alike and is an active member in the NYC music community.