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The suite of uncommon sorrows

David Borgo, Cattle Decapitation, Snow Tha Product, Michael Tiernan, Colin Jones

David Borgo
David Borgo

UC San Diego Professor of Music David Borgo is a saxophonist who plays tenor, soprano, and a variety of other instruments from all over the globe. He cites multi-instrumentalist Dr. A.J. Racy, from UCLA, as one of his mentors in ethnomusicology. Borgo describes his new album, The Suite of Uncommon Sorrows, as “an eleven-part suite of original music composed in response to the tumultuous events of 2020, including the devastating covid-19 pandemic, the growing Black Lives Matter movement, and the debilitating polarization of U.S. politics that made it impossible to address either of these adequately. Each movement explores a different ‘uncommon sorrow,’ such as kuebiko (a state of moral exhaustion inspired by acts of horror in the news, which forces you to revise your image of what can happen in this world), kenopsia (the eerie, forlorn atmosphere of a place that’s usually bustling with people but is now abandoned and quiet), chrysalism (an amniotic-like tranquility while a storm rages outside), zenosyne (the sense that time keeps going faster), and pâro (the feeling that no matter what you do it will always be inadequate).”

Cattle Decapitation

Known for wearing masks made of beef jerky onstage, hardcore vegetarian band Cattle Decapitation “brings forth the ideas of vegetarianism with the utmost brutal approach in expression, both musically and imagery.” Co-founded in 1996 by Locust members David Astor on bass and Gabe Serbian on drums, the band later recruited Travis Ryan as lead singer. Astor then moved to drums, Serbian switched to guitar, and that lineup released two of the group’s most enduring albums, Human Jerky and Homovore. With nine full-lengths now in their catalog, the band’s Homovore album is being remastered by Dave Otero for local label Three One G. It will be made available this month digitally, on cassette, CD, and in limited edition vinyl runs including 500 “Release the Gimp” color vinyl copies, and 300 “Wine of the Sanguine” color pressings. Human Jerky was reissued on vinyl by Three One G in three variants late last year: 500 “Unclogged” color vinyl, 300 “Ready For Spewage” color vinyl, and 200 “Cream of the Crop” color vinyl. Earlier this year, the band released a video for their song “Finish Them,” from the album Death Atlas.

Snow Tha Product

Mexican-American rapper Claudia Feliciano attended Mar Vista High School and Mira Mesa High School. She originally went by the name Snow White tha Product, until the Disney corporation threatened litigation, forcing her to instead go by Snow Tha Product. She studied to be a social worker at Mesa College before deciding to enter the music business, going on to work with CyHi da Prince, Tech N9ne, Crooked I, and others. She released her debut album Unorthodox in 2011, earning a hit record with a short song called “Holy S---.” Her tenure with Atlantic Records ended a few years later, as she diversified to doing soundtracks with a song for The Purge and acting in Queen in the South. Most of her album or EP releases include at least one song sung in her native Spanish. By 2019, she was self-releasing singles such as “Say Bitch.” During the 2020/2021 pandemic shutdown, she launched a podcast with her brother and girlfriend. Returning to the concert stage this summer, she dusted off old crowd favorites such as the crowd-surfer’s favorite “Gettin It” and her frequent set closer “I Don’t Wanna Leave.” She has new music videos for “Que Le Gusta El Flow” and “Que Oso,” with over three million views on Youtube for the latter track.

Michael Tiernan

Before songwriter Michael Tiernan moved to town in 2003, he was performing in a Rome, Italy nightclub, attending seminary school, and studying to become a Catholic priest. Tiernan left the church at age 27 and eventually settled in San Diego. He’s releasing a string of new singles that started as quarantine custom songs created for others, including a conference theme song for marijuana periodical MJBiz Daily. “All of us musicians were scrambling to find ways to make income during that time, and we had no idea how long it would last. Early on, I had taken some advice from an old friend to reach out to my fanbase, as well as companies, to pitch the idea of writing them custom songs — songs written as gifts for someone or for special occasions — as a way to keep connected during the shutdown. With my first mention of it on my socials, I immediately got a commission from a former wedding client of mine who wanted me to write a surprise song for his ten-year wedding anniversary coming up. Boom, some income. And such a new and gratifying experience in songwriting.” That song, “Forever Plays,” will be issued in mid-November. Other releases will include “Beacon of Hope,” written for an international luxury hotel association, and “Life in 3D,” created for a wedding client’s first dance.

Colin Jones

Singer-songwriter Colin Jones was born in San Diego, but spent most of his life residing on the other side of the globe, in Australia. He moved back to San Diego in 2017, and he’s currently living in National City. Citing influences such as Howlin’ Wolf, Bob Dylan, Nina Simone, Kings of Leon, and local hero Tom Waits, his local band members have included Zack Marzoni on pedal steel and guitar, Becky Free on drums, and bassist Julianna Zachariou. An EP called Mama Don’t Weep, including music from his Australian days, came out in late 2020. This year has seen the release of new singles such as “Looking at You” b/w “Anything You Say,” as well as “Marietta Ave,” and “Moonlight.” A video for the latter track is streaming online; it was shot in one long, single continuous take.

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David Borgo
David Borgo

UC San Diego Professor of Music David Borgo is a saxophonist who plays tenor, soprano, and a variety of other instruments from all over the globe. He cites multi-instrumentalist Dr. A.J. Racy, from UCLA, as one of his mentors in ethnomusicology. Borgo describes his new album, The Suite of Uncommon Sorrows, as “an eleven-part suite of original music composed in response to the tumultuous events of 2020, including the devastating covid-19 pandemic, the growing Black Lives Matter movement, and the debilitating polarization of U.S. politics that made it impossible to address either of these adequately. Each movement explores a different ‘uncommon sorrow,’ such as kuebiko (a state of moral exhaustion inspired by acts of horror in the news, which forces you to revise your image of what can happen in this world), kenopsia (the eerie, forlorn atmosphere of a place that’s usually bustling with people but is now abandoned and quiet), chrysalism (an amniotic-like tranquility while a storm rages outside), zenosyne (the sense that time keeps going faster), and pâro (the feeling that no matter what you do it will always be inadequate).”

Cattle Decapitation

Known for wearing masks made of beef jerky onstage, hardcore vegetarian band Cattle Decapitation “brings forth the ideas of vegetarianism with the utmost brutal approach in expression, both musically and imagery.” Co-founded in 1996 by Locust members David Astor on bass and Gabe Serbian on drums, the band later recruited Travis Ryan as lead singer. Astor then moved to drums, Serbian switched to guitar, and that lineup released two of the group’s most enduring albums, Human Jerky and Homovore. With nine full-lengths now in their catalog, the band’s Homovore album is being remastered by Dave Otero for local label Three One G. It will be made available this month digitally, on cassette, CD, and in limited edition vinyl runs including 500 “Release the Gimp” color vinyl copies, and 300 “Wine of the Sanguine” color pressings. Human Jerky was reissued on vinyl by Three One G in three variants late last year: 500 “Unclogged” color vinyl, 300 “Ready For Spewage” color vinyl, and 200 “Cream of the Crop” color vinyl. Earlier this year, the band released a video for their song “Finish Them,” from the album Death Atlas.

Snow Tha Product

Mexican-American rapper Claudia Feliciano attended Mar Vista High School and Mira Mesa High School. She originally went by the name Snow White tha Product, until the Disney corporation threatened litigation, forcing her to instead go by Snow Tha Product. She studied to be a social worker at Mesa College before deciding to enter the music business, going on to work with CyHi da Prince, Tech N9ne, Crooked I, and others. She released her debut album Unorthodox in 2011, earning a hit record with a short song called “Holy S---.” Her tenure with Atlantic Records ended a few years later, as she diversified to doing soundtracks with a song for The Purge and acting in Queen in the South. Most of her album or EP releases include at least one song sung in her native Spanish. By 2019, she was self-releasing singles such as “Say Bitch.” During the 2020/2021 pandemic shutdown, she launched a podcast with her brother and girlfriend. Returning to the concert stage this summer, she dusted off old crowd favorites such as the crowd-surfer’s favorite “Gettin It” and her frequent set closer “I Don’t Wanna Leave.” She has new music videos for “Que Le Gusta El Flow” and “Que Oso,” with over three million views on Youtube for the latter track.

Michael Tiernan

Before songwriter Michael Tiernan moved to town in 2003, he was performing in a Rome, Italy nightclub, attending seminary school, and studying to become a Catholic priest. Tiernan left the church at age 27 and eventually settled in San Diego. He’s releasing a string of new singles that started as quarantine custom songs created for others, including a conference theme song for marijuana periodical MJBiz Daily. “All of us musicians were scrambling to find ways to make income during that time, and we had no idea how long it would last. Early on, I had taken some advice from an old friend to reach out to my fanbase, as well as companies, to pitch the idea of writing them custom songs — songs written as gifts for someone or for special occasions — as a way to keep connected during the shutdown. With my first mention of it on my socials, I immediately got a commission from a former wedding client of mine who wanted me to write a surprise song for his ten-year wedding anniversary coming up. Boom, some income. And such a new and gratifying experience in songwriting.” That song, “Forever Plays,” will be issued in mid-November. Other releases will include “Beacon of Hope,” written for an international luxury hotel association, and “Life in 3D,” created for a wedding client’s first dance.

Colin Jones

Singer-songwriter Colin Jones was born in San Diego, but spent most of his life residing on the other side of the globe, in Australia. He moved back to San Diego in 2017, and he’s currently living in National City. Citing influences such as Howlin’ Wolf, Bob Dylan, Nina Simone, Kings of Leon, and local hero Tom Waits, his local band members have included Zack Marzoni on pedal steel and guitar, Becky Free on drums, and bassist Julianna Zachariou. An EP called Mama Don’t Weep, including music from his Australian days, came out in late 2020. This year has seen the release of new singles such as “Looking at You” b/w “Anything You Say,” as well as “Marietta Ave,” and “Moonlight.” A video for the latter track is streaming online; it was shot in one long, single continuous take.

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