Borges offers pandemic reflections with ‘Together Alone’ | News

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When Sarah Borges offers up her new release, “Together Alone,” Saturday, April 30, at the Firehouse Center for the Arts, Newburyport, know it’s one of her ways of making sense of the pandemic.

The album, her eighth, after all, was born in lockdown, when the world was upside down, and carries the musical mark of those times of trauma.

Early in the pandemic, Borges was infected with COVID and spent much time in isolation. Long stretches of being disconnected from the world, friends and her career, left her wondering what to do?

So the homebound Borges did the one thing she knows how to do well. She picked up her guitar and began writing songs such as “Wasting My Time,” and others that would make it on the brand new album.

The album with a ruminative gait, dark mixing of electric guitars and Hammond organs is nothing less than you’d expect from one of the leading voices in Boston’s Americana scene.

“It’s been awhile now since I’ve seen my friends / Don’t know when I’m gonna see ‘em again,” Borges sings with the kind of pensive ache her voice was made for.

“Without them around / It’s harder to pretend that I know where I’m going.” With the new normal being an isolating life in lockdown limbo, the song seems to wonder whether time, in this context, is actually wasting us, rather than the other way around.

Raised in Taunton, in a third generation Portuguese family, Borges majored in musical theatre at Emerson College. Her appeal has been described as “walking that fine line between punk and country.” Borges’ varied influences reportedly range from Dolly Parton, Mahalia Jackson, X, Sid Vicious, Merle Haggard, to bubblegum pop.

Throughout 20-year career, Borges has forged a loyal following — longtime fans dating back to 2004’s critically acclaimed debut “Silver City” — by connecting with her audience in her own special way.


Sarah Borges

8 p.m. Saturday, April 30

Firehouse Center for the Arts

Market Square, Newburyport

Box Office: 978-462-7336

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