"It's that time of year, when the world falls in love..."

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Im a sappy guy..."lot of sap, lotttt of sap."  Bring me anywhere near the Holiday season and I get all warm and fuzzy (insert joke about my beard here.) So this year, looking back on all the new, wonderful people I've met in 2011(more on this a little later,) I felt it would only be fitting to record a couple of my favorite holiday classics with one of those people. A little bit about Kate Sland: Kate hosts the Monday night open mic at Caffe Vivaldi. If you follow me on any of those fancy social network sites, I certainly don't hide how I feel about Caffe Vivaldi (a little more on this, also later.) Kate also happens to be a singer & songwriter, and a great one at that - fun fact: Last year we both released records one week apart at NYC's Joe's Pub...I, Jubilation & Jealousy, and she, with her band, Bellewether, put out a self titled EP. Here we are backstage last March doing a songHey guess what, Kate is ALSO 1/3 of the gals in The Tickled Pinks, an incredible group known around NYC as a tribute to the Andrews Sisters...seek them out, I promise you will not be disappointed. Unless you don't like The Andrews Sisters, in which case that'd be silly of you to seek out something you don't like. Having said that, I'm not sure I've ever met anyone that doesn't like The Andrews Sisters. But, I digress.

SO...knowing a little about Kate, and assuming you know at least a little bit about me (silly assumption? aren't all assumptions silly?) consider yourself prepped to play, "Yule. a holiday ep" on repeat through this Holiday Season! Click the cover, below, and you'll be transported to the magical land of BandCamp. You can stream the 2 tracks as much as you like, but let it be known, if you take the extra effort to actually download it...you get a BONUS TRACK (oh, and it's FREE!)

Allow me to get all "serious" on you real quick...

I'd be remiss if I didn't show some love to Caffe Vivaldi. In short...it's an essential component to NYC. One can imagine it to be the Gerde's Folk City of our generation.  I've only been spending time there for a year, and the impact this place has had on my life is immeasurable.  Re-read that paragraph on Kate Sland above, and you'll get the idea that I'm fond of her. You're right, but she's only one of MANY connections I've made from the community Caffe Vivaldi has built. Each week, new collaborations are being made, new friendships are developing, and new art is inspired at this NYC staple.  So why am I getting all "sappy" about it? Because greed is a terrible thing, and maybe some people never saw "Scrooged" growing up. Rent has gone up significantly, and though manageable, Caffe Vivaldi is currently raising funds to stay alive.  While I can carry on about how much it means to me, you should experience it for yourself, and if you are able, contribute to keep Caffe Vivaldi around as long possible. Check out their site, and follow instructions there on how to help.

In closing, SAP ALERT! Im a blessed individual, and I'm thankful for my family & friends who are always there for me, always have been, and always will be.  This year I can add, happily, that Im thankful for the new & wonderful people in my life. It's been a crazy year, and everyone close to me has witnessed it first hand...Of course, I'm speaking about music, and I'm in love with the road I took to get here. I can't tell you how excited I am for what lies ahead, and I just want to thank YOU for your friendship & support.

Thank you, and Happy Holidays!

See you soon,

-Matteo