French Quarter Fest Focus: Mia Borders

Mia Borders. Photo by Golden Richard III.

Mia Borders. Photo by Golden Richard III.

“I get bored and make companies,” says Mia Borders. Borders, who has a passion for a lot of things, also likes to write contracts. The 24-year-old singer sips a black tea and tries to count how many companies she’s created. “Film, just in case I sell a screenplay. My recording label. Mia Borders LLC. Oh, and then a publishing company.”

She doesn’t sit back and let others do the work. She constantly expands her roles, whether it’s working as a paralegal, studying calculus, or, in her most recent case, releasing her third album.
By the time she was 10, Borders had started to compose original music. While studying at Loyola University, she released two albums, Southern Fried Soul and Magnolia Blue. Her upcoming album, Wherever There Is, will be released later this year. Now that she has a bit of experience, she’s expanded her role in the studio.

“I’m genuinely impressed,” she says about the album.

Borders’ mother passed away when Borders was only six years old. To this day, Simon and Garfunkel always reminds Borders of her mother, who was an architect. Borders describes her as a bit of a hippie. The two sang “Bridge over Troubled Water” together, and her mother let Borders regale her with every Whitney Houston song she knew. Borders attended a Connecticut boarding school, then returned to New Orleans for college and joined the local music scene. Borders’ brother, an engineer, helped her with the business side of her companies.

When this math nerd/Victorian lit fan/singer/songwriter recently faced graduation, she wasn’t sure what the future held for her. “I was thinking maybe grad school for Victorian literature,” she says, sounding a little unenthused.

Instead, she signed a record deal and the decision was done. She was a full-time professional musician. Like in everything she does, Borders ran with it. In Wherever There Is, Borders is not only singing and writing but also producing, playing rhythm guitar, and mixing.

The only thing she swears she’ll never be is the sound engineer.

“All of those cables,” she says with a shudder.