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We will sign any CDs that you purchase from us - thank you for the support - Tom and Sera

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1 copy of the CD “We Still Know How to Love”, 1 copy of the CD “Unlock the Sky”, and 1 copy of the CD “Swimming in the Dark - 3 CDs at the cost of shipping 1.

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We Still Know How to Love

Tom Mank and Sera Smolen

Modern Folk, Blues, and Improvisation - guitar, vocal and cello - with all-star international guests on violin, piano, harmonica, percussion, and vocals. Produced by Julie Last!

Artists: Tom Mank (guitar, vocal), Sera Smolen (cello), Janet Cotraccia (vocal), Jeannie Burns (vocal), Ellen Shae (vocal), Kimberly Claeys (vocal), Kirsti Gholson (vocal), Gait Klein Kromhof (harmonica), Julie Last (vocal), Vincent Chambon ( guitar), Manuel Quintana (percussion),

Recorded Jnanuary 2017 - August 2019

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Unlock the Sky

Tom Mank & Sera Smolen

Modern Folk, Blues, and Improvisation - guitar, vocal and cello - with all-star international guests on violin, piano, harmonica, percussion, and vocals. Produced by Julie Last!

Artists: Tom Mank (guitar, vocal), SeraSmolen (cello), Jeannie Burns (vocal), Terry Burns (vocal), Kimberly Claeys (vocal), Kirsti Gholson (vocal), Ron Kristy (keyboard, guitar, vocal), Gait Klein Kromhof (harmonica), Julie Last (vocal), Amy Merrill (violin), Manuel Quintana (percussion),

Recorded March 2014 - August 2016 by Julie Last @ Cold Brook Productions, Bearsville, NY - additional recording by Will Russell at Electric Wilburland, Arjan Bogaert at Barefoot Recording Studio in Pittem, Belgium, and Ward Van Iseghem in Sint Gillis Maas, Belgium. Mastered by Dan Coutant at Sun Room Mastering. Graphic Design by Patti Witten

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Paper Kisses

"Tom Mank is a monster songwriter, right up there with the best, and can paint musical pictures like you can't believe. And Sera Jane Smolen? She is nothing short of masterful.." - Frank Gutch Jr. hubpages.com. Produced by Julie Last.

"Tom Mank is a monster songwriter in the vein of the old folk/blues artists like Dave Van Ronk, but with a sense of the present. His music portraits range from romantic to political and when they don't reach for the heart, they embed themselves in the head. He is intelligence in music. Sera Jane Smolen, on the other hand, is music personified. Her cello supplements Mank's guitar with bass riffs and jazz phrasing as well as support from the masters." - Frank Gutch Jr., Hubpages.com

"Sera Smolen’s sinuous cello and Tom Mank’s driving guitar generate a firm beat beneath metablues that is homespun yet exotic, hinting of smoky nights in Istanbul or Calcutta.” - Spider Barbour, Woodstock Times

"The songs on Paper Kisses are soft kisses on the cheek and quiet conversations in the night. They are late evenings and early mornings in subdued light or in the dark. They are hope and despair and joy and angst. They are a Tom Mank & Sera Smolen gift to the discerning ears of people who treasure music beyond its use as filler or background music.

This is a big step forward for Mank and Smolen in that it is the most cohesive effort to-date. The feel, the aura, the music--- they all inhabit one point in time, or so it seems. Mank has grown exponentially as guitarist, Smolen steps out of the background a bit more (which makes a huge and positive difference), and the contributions of the “guest” artists are somewhat minimal and yet crucial. Pulled together by the musical vision of Mank and Smolen and the legerdemain of producer Julie Last, Paper Kisses hits the mark and will stand on its own long after Mank and Smolen have recorded their future projects, of which I hope there to be many. What I'm saying is, it is no wonder Mank has put his last two projects into Last's hands. It is in the grooves." - Frank Gutch Jr., Rock and Reprise

“From the very first notes on, they excite your imagination. The cello of Sera Smolen and the voice of Tom Mank create magic." - Marcie for Rootstime, Belgium

"Tom Mank is one of those singers who could be reciting the phone book and you'd go 'yeah, there's something to that!' Sera Smolen's cello takes us all kinds of places weird & wonderful, while never losing touch with the emotional roots of the songs. She's soloistic, but always in a way that supports the overall thrust of the music. Her cellistic terrain includes emotive, whacked-out natural sound fx & highenergy solos drawn from many influences, such as 19th century etudes and Indian ragas, to name but a few. Smolen is a passionate player who is clearly intimate with the inherent joy in taking musical risks. It is thrilling when artists dig in and craft a work as rich, vibrant and authentic as this." - Corbin Keep, Cello City

"Tom Mank and Sera Smolen are so far beyond the mainstream, it's scary. They are expert at their craft, but more than that, they develop it. At their level, I am not at all sure that it is a craft but art. Regardless, I know one thing. There can't be a gig they play where a large percentage of their audience is not comprised of fellow musicians. That, my friends, is a given, and it speaks volumes." - Frank Gutch Jr., Folk and Acoustic Music Exchange

March 28, 2010 Recorded October 2008 - March 2010 by Julie Last @ Cold Brook Productions, Bearsville, NY - additional recording by Will Russell at Electric Wilburland and by Greg McGrath at Monk Sound Mastered by Rich DePaolo Graphic Design by Patti Witten

Artists: Julie Last (vocal), Kirsti Gholson (vocal), Jennie Lowe Stearns (vocal), Kathy Ziegler (piano, vocal), Manuel Quintana (percussion), Dave Unland (Tuba), Mac Benford (banjo), and Joe Villette (gryphon 12-string)

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Where the Sun Meets the Blue

"The combination of Mank’s voice, songs and guitar, complimented with Smolen’s cello and every time one or two changing instruments and voices, results in a wonderful charismatic folk album.” - Heaven Magazine, August 2007. Produced by Julie Last.

"Tom Mank and Sera Smolen are so far beyond the mainstream, it's scary. They are acoustic music's Igor Stravinsky in a world of Brahms and Schumanns. I mean, Brahms and Schumann are great, but Stravinsky— man, that's adventure! So it is with Mank and Smolen, at least as presented in Where the Sun Meets the Blue, an album of amazing musical styles. Sure, the overlying style is folk and jazz with a bit of Smolenized-classical thrown in on the side, but that does not even begin to describe what goes on on this album. And trust me when I say that the meager attempt I make here will fall sadly short. Mank approaches this album like a modern beatnik, picking subjects on the edge and presenting them with unerring touch. For instance, Off-Beat Rhyme. A seemingly simple look at an unrequited love of sorts, he creeps into the nebulous shadows of emotional turmoil, yet with a light and practical air brought off by his superb guitar and the absolutely laughably excellent cello of Sera Smolen. Throw in a magnificent performance, magically understated of course, by Amy Merrill on viola and some otherworldly voice by producer Julie Last and the stage is set. I am of the mind that Tom Mank and Sera Smolen are easily Grammy material. They are expert at their craft, but more than that, they develop it. At their level, I am not at all sure that it is a craft but art. Regardless, I know one thing. There can't be a gig they play where a large percentage of their audience is not comprised of fellow musicians. That, my friends, is a given, and it speaks volumes." Frank Gutch, Jr. - Folk and Acoustic Music Exchange (Aug, 2008)

"Tom Mank's talent lies in songwriting and in creatively dreaming away to horizons 'where the sun meets the blue'. His songs remain on that emotional line which perfectly keeps the balance between jazzy bluesnotes and improvising day-dreaming-blues. Sometimes his voice resembles Nick Drake. He also knows how to embrace the nostalgia of the fall as well as the spring-breeze in his songs. (This is) an album to become silent out of respect for the wandering spirits on dancing feet, reaching out for a melody and the rhythm of the beat. No better words than this 'free translation' of the passage from Tom Mank's 'Where's That Train', to describe this CD." Marcie - Rootstime (Jan, 2008)

May 1, 2007 Recorded May 2006 - March 2007 by Julie Last @ Cold Brook Productions, Bearsville, NY - additional recording by Will Russell at Electric Wilburland Mastered by Rich DePaolo Graphic Design by Patti Witten

Artists: Julie Last (vocal), Kirsti Gholson (vocal), Pam Daley (vocal), Amy Merrill (viola), Eddie Smith (percussion), David Hornung (accordian), Josh Roy Brown (lap steel), and Michael Veitch (electric guitar)

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Souls of Birds

"Tom Mank's low-key Lou Reed / Leonard Cohen-ish vocals have a compelling, spoken word quality to them. Mank is one of those singers who could be reciting the phone book and you'd go 'yeah, there's something to that.'" - Corbin Keep, Cello City Ink

Tom Mank’s low-key Lou Reed/Leonard Cohen-ish vocals have a compelling, spoken word quality to them. Mank is one of those singers who could be reciting the phone book and you’d go “yeah, there’s something to that!” The lyrics, thankfully, are a lot better than that though! Sera Smolen’s cello takes us all kinds of places weird and wonderful, while never losing touch with the emotional roots of the songs. She’s soloistic, but always in a way that supports the overall thrust of the music. Her cellistic terrain includes emotive, whacked-out natural sound effects and high-energy solos drawn from many influences, such as 19th century etudes and Indian ragas, to name but a few. Smolen is a passionate player who is clearly intimate with the inherent joy in taking musical risks. Due to their willingness to keep changing things up, the sounds of their instruments are continually fresh and inspiring, as are the arrangements. There is always some cool new surprise poking its impish head around the corner ahead of us as the CD progresses. It is thrilling when artists dig in and craft a work as rich and vibrant and authentic as this. Five stars." - Corbin Keep - Cello City Ink (Sep, 2004)

November, 2004 Recorded July 2004 - November 2004 by Will Russell at Electric Wilburland Mastered by Rich DePaolo Graphic Design by Patti Witten Cover Art by Helena Cooper

Artists: Dee Specker (violin, vocal), Lauar Branca (vocal), Patti Witten (vocal), Ruth Roland (violin), Michael Galloway (trumpet), Danny Birch (sarod), and Paul Fairbanks (banjo)

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