Sarah Borges returns with Radio Sweetheart

, Staff

After a period of significant changes that including entering Motherhood and splitting with her longtime band, local favorite Sarah Borges is back with new music. On Friday, she’ll celebrate the release of her new fan-funded album Radio Sweetheart with a big show at The Sinclair.

With that in mind, we recently caught up with the singer to discuss the new album, Friday’s show and more.

Boston Music Spotlight (BMS): This new album comes after some significant changes – from splitting with your label and the Broken Singles, as well as entering motherhood. How did this all impact the sound of Radio Sweetheart?

Sarah Borges (SB): I felt a lot freer on this record because I was only responsible to myself. That was a little daunting at first, as I’ve used the same producer and band for all of my other records, but this is definitely a different time in my life so it seemed appropriate.

BMS: Walk us through your songwriting process.

SB: I usually just sit down with a guitar until I find a progression that sounds good to me. Then it’s about finding lyrics that suit the mood of the progression, and that fit into the spaces I’ve created.

BMS: What were you looking to achieve on this new album?

SB: I just wanted to keep moving forward. When my last band, the Broken Singles, ended, it was a big loss. It took me a while to find my footing again, so this record is a symbol of that for me.

BMS: How was the recording process different this time around?

SB: It was an entirely different team of people, musicians, engineer, producer, so that obviously had an impact. I also was making a solo record, so all of the decisions were up to me. And we had a finite time to complete the record, and it was relatively short.

BMS: How did working with producer Steve Berlin come about and explain his impact on Radio Sweetheart.

SB: I met Steve out in Portland, Oregon through my manager. He came to a show and liked my band and said he would be interested in working with me at some point in the future. He was an obvious choice when it came time to make the album. Steve is great at hearing the big picture. He definitely had visions for the songs that I wouldn’t have thought of. He’s also very thorough and hands on. He created some loops for the song “Radio Sweetheart” that are just great.

BMS: Are there any tracks that you are particular proud of?

SB: I’d say “Radio Sweetheart”, “The Waiting and the Worry” and “Think of What You’ve Done”.

BMS: Along with the new material, you covered Lloyd Price’s “Heavy Dreams”. Explain how this selection came about?

SB: That was actually Steve’s suggestion. Lloyd Price has some great tunes, but this one was extra cool because singing it from a woman’s perspective changes the vibe of the song.

BMS: You turned to your devoted fanbase to help fund this album and are doing it again for a SXSW tour. Has the success of your crowd-funding campaigns surprised you? Does it add any level of confidence or even pressure?

SB: The crowd funding has been pretty humbling. It’s an immediate validation of the hard work I’ve put in because these people have been so generous. So yes, I’d say it definitely gave me a lot of confidence.

BMS: On Friday, you will celebrate the album release with another Boston favorite Girls Gins and Glory. What in your opinion makes them such a special band?

SB: They’re all very earnest about what they do onstage. There’s not a lot of posturing or unnecessary crap. And the songs are great. Ward and his boys are just pros at respecting the music and past traditions, and combining it all in a way that’s a blast to watch and listen to.

BMS: What can fans expect at the show on Friday?

SB: Hopefully a huge amount of fun! We’re all just so excited to be able to do such a big show at a beautiful venue at home. I think we’ll all be at the top of our game.

BMS: Anything else you’d like to share with our readers?

SB: I think that’s it! Keep supporting local music, and listen to at least one song a day that makes your insides happy.

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