The Borrowers lend Houston an acoustic earful

by Scott McMillan

Daily Cougar Staff

Shakespeare be damned. Mark Addison is a Borrower and likes it that way.

"It's a magical situation," says Addison, founder of the Borrowers, a four-piece acoustic rock group opening for Charlie Sexton tonight at the Fabulous Satellite Lounge.

The Los Angeles-based group recently signed with Guardian Records, an EMI Records label, after representatives discovered the band at the South by Southwest Music Festival in Austin. They sealed the record deal over beers with the music big wigs at the Steamboat club on Austin's Sixth Street.

"We're not traditional," says Addison. "Our music is lyrical, song-based rock-and-roll played on everything but electric guitars. "We're rockers at heart, but I think everything that you can do with a Les Paul guitar plugged into a Marshall amplifier has been done."

With that in mind, the Borrowers use an upright bass, violin, mandolin, flute, bass clarinet and saxophone for its performances.

Three classically trained musicians back Addison's guitar: bassist Josef Zimmerman, instrumentalist Josh Segal and drummer Nina Singh.

Addison started the Borrowers after moving to Los Angeles from Cleveland, where he headed The Generators, a popular regional rock band.

"I wanted to re-invent myself, and that's hard to do in one place," Addison says. "I started playing around L.A. in coffeehouses and such. Then I met Josef and we said, `Let's do it.'"

He says the band wants to be successful but on their own terms. "If we can pay the rent, I'm happy," he added

"Nervous Heart," from the Borrowers' self-titled, self-produced debut album, appears on the movie soundtrack for Bed of Roses, an upcoming romantic comedy starring Christian Slater and Mary Stuart Masterson.

"Texas is our favorite place to play," says Addison. "There is a real respect and love for music and musicians here."

Addison says he looks foreword to opening for Sexton. "Charlie and his brother Will are the greatest."

Addison says music lovers can expect a "high-energy, passionate" show from the Borrowers. Tonight will be their first performance in Houston, but you can be sure it won't be the last time these guys roll into our city.

The Borrowers take the Satellite's stage at 9 p.m. , and will also play this Friday night at the Velvet Elvis. The Fabulous Satellite Lounge is located at 3616 Washington Ave. For more information call 869-COOL.

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