BORRI Sings Songs of Disdain towards Miami

Hear what I have to say, BOORI missed that one day in the summer years ago so now she wants her life back. Her voice transcends all of us listening to their song Cold & Burning. It leaves you wanting to belong and empty at the same time. The album Open the Foot was released back in 2017 but BORRI left to finish school at RISD so now they are ready to see what it can become. Coffee time for four strings she sings her daydreams while nightmares scream.

Why the name BORRI?

BORRI: BORRI comes from a combination of Boriqua and my family nickname. Which is funny to me because when I was coming up with the name I really didn’t like being called my nickname. I would remember feeling ashamed when my friends found out about it and they would jokingly poke at its absurdity which hurt me even more. In contrast to my identity as a Puerto Rican is something which I am so proud of and have such a loving affection for. I think now I unconsciously wanted to merge these two halves.

What is your practice situation and who and how do you write your songs?

My practice situation always happens at night. Because it’s just me on a ukulele I can easily sit on my bed and get all the songs down. Same thing for creating the songs. I think all of my songs have been done in the comfort of my bed. I get my phone to record something and after I’m done it’s already pretty late so I just fall asleep. It’s really relaxing and definitely a form of calming down for me. 

If you can have a guest musician play with you, who would it be? 

(BORRI stares directly at Interviewer)

Pocket of Lollipops!! I get shy showing any of my friends my music or work in general and yet still have the desire to share what I’ve made with them. So having any of my friends work with me would bring me so much happiness, once I get over the hurdle of embarrassment. Pocket of Lollipops is perfect though because they always see me perform so I’m accustomed to it hahaha! 

Tell us about your next album. When we can expect it?

BORRI is a reaction to me living in Miami. In my first album I knocked out all those songs in about a week, but it felt as though it was pent up since the moment I stepped foot in Miami for good. Now after leaving for a few years and coming back I am really trying to figure out what BORRI can do or what she is though this time i feel it will take some time.

Share with us something that you wouldn’t usually tell other people.

I don’t properly show my friends or family my music! It’s a really bad habit of mine I’m trying to correct but I get really easily flustered by it. I just evade questions. In high school I used to tell my mom I’d be going to watch shows when actually I’d be the one performing. My sister and my best friend only recently came to one of my shows for the first time and I couldn’t look at them!!

Where do you come from?

I’m from Puerto Rico!! Though I moved to Miami when I was around 10.

Do you have a Video coming out?

I honestly don’t know why I haven’t yet! I have made videos using songs I’ve done but never any “music videos”. I’ll be looking into that.

What was the first album you bought?

I really grew up with early YouTube so I never had the urge to buy physical albums. Though I do remember the first album I’ve ever properly owned was given to me by my friend in high school. Ray Lynch Deep Breakfast. It was her dad’s old cassette tape and it’s honestly one of my favorite albums still. 

Can you tell me about the art on your album?

The art on my album is little devil ghosts and a car. A song in the album is called “A Dream you Drove my Car” and for me it had the most vivid imagery because I actually had that dream so I already had the image ready in my mind. The devil ghosts were a fascination of mine at the time. I would always write DIABLO and draw these cartoons which came from the Puerto Rican Vejigantes. I think on the car you can see a small one with all the horns, but the larger ghost were normal diablos. 

Can you talk a bit about your experience in art school at RISD?

I had gone to an art school for high school so I wanted to continue art for higher education. But my high school was disorganized to put it simply. I never really learned any basics when it came to academics. So going to University was an intense shock for me. I was surrounded by people far smarter than I and everyone seemed to know what “art” was. I was really motivated to push towards that understanding too. Like I unconsciously drove towards art but I had no understanding why. Having been in such an intense and motivating environment allowed me to really look at what captured me about art to begin with. Coming back to Miami with all this new knowledge makes me really appreciate and want to foster care for projects like BORRI.

What about Miami pushes to create?

For lack of a better word my disdain for it. I really came to Miami hating it. Pure rage and sadness. I didn’t care for it but I still had to be here. It’s a taxing thing to hate your environment. Art allowed me an outlet, not through escapism but a sort of filter to see what I was really dealing with. I had to leave my precious home of Puerto Rico to a place that wouldn’t accept me, even though environmentally (it being the tropics) it was very similar to the place I loved. It was like I was at odd ends with my peers, we just couldn’t connect. BORRI, my first real project here that I have manipulated, expanded and worked on, allowed me to be present in Miami. I think everyone here is trying to find a connection with their environment. Either it reminds them of home or they’re trying to find their ideal home in it, I think people strive for that comfort. 

Anything else you want to tell me or provide to include in this.

I’m always scared my ukulele is going to break! I love her dearly but I really don’t know what’s going to happen if she does, this is a constant fear of mine.

Are you willing to share one of your videos with us?

Yeah! In the vein of Miami and the like, “Vecino Mio” is really the biggest outlet of all the negativity and beauty, and loneliness I felt.

Vecino Mio from Ligia Carabarin-Amiguet on Vimeo.

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Tony Kapel

Tony Kapel along with Maitejosune Urrechaga make up the Miami band Pocket of Lollipops