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Taken from Michael Franti (Dec 20, 2011)

HAPPY HOLIDAYS! by Michael Franti

Season's Greetings and Happy New Year to you all!2011 has been an incredible year for me. We spent more than half of it on the road touring the USA, Canada, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore and Brazil. I am so grateful to all of you who came out to be a part of our concerts, we love to play music and without you all, none of it would be possible.

We are ending this year by doing our third annual Bali Bash Concert on New Year's Eve, in Neu Kuning, Bali. As always the show is a benefit for Bumi Sehat Natural Birthing Clinic. Thanks to many of your votes, director Robin Lim was just awarded CNN's Hero of the year!!! So I am looking forward to ringing in the new year honoring her decades of amazing work, raising funds for her new clinic, and recognizing the people of Neu Kuning for their commitment to the hospital.

The last few years have not been without their pains. My appendix rupturing and coming very close to death 2 years ago has left me with much to be grateful for. Our last album, The Sound Of Sunshine, contained very personal songs written from that experience. Some fans screamed,"Where have the angry political rants gone!" other fans said,"We appreciate the insight of emotion into your personal world!" others said, "Shut the F up, we wanna dance!"

One thing I've learned in my two decades of making music is that it's impossible to please everyone. Shouldn't even attempt it. What I can promise, however, is that I will always present who I am with music from my heart about what I believe in and, like everyone else on this beautiful planet of ours, I am always evolving.

I am currently in the midst of working on a new album and have been in LA doing something I have never done before: work with many different producers and artists collaborating on writing and recording. It has been an exciting challenge for me working with new people and keeping my heart and mind open to new ideas and ways of creating music. Some of it has been amazing and some not so amazing, but all of it I have learned a great deal from. In the end I know this record will sound unique, beautiful, and different from the last.

I have been inspired by the imminent craziness of our political times, the new love and heartbreak I have experienced, and the music that inspires me to dance. I hope this album is one that all of you will find some inspiration and upliftment during these difficult times.

You will be hearing new music in early 2012 so keep your eyes and ears peeled to www.michaelfranti.com and Michael Franti and Spearhead on Facebook for release dates and videos.

Right now, I am in Bali for a month of relaxing, yoga, running, playing, writing, loving, and working on some philanthropic projects, but mostly just being with the people I care about the most. I hope you are with the people who are dearest to you. Thank you for all of your support, encouragement, facebooking, and tweeting. As always I will be jumping off the front of the stage at the end of every show to say hello, share a hug, and hear how you're doing.

Big love,
Michael Franti


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