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Were you aware that Bob Dylan is releasing a Christmas album next month? The story gets even stranger today. It seems Dylan has now inked a deal with the America's most troubled financial institution to help market it:

Citibank said on Tuesday that "Christmas In The Heart" will be available for Internet download to 13 million customers enrolled in the company's rewards program, during the week before it hits stores on October 13. Nancy Gordon, executive vice president of Citibank's rewards program, said she expects the album will have "high appeal" to customers, who mainly get points by using their credit or debit cards. The CD will not be sold in branches of the Citigroup Inc unit.

It could have been worse. At least he's not teaming up with Goldman Sachs, right? And Dylan seems to have a good excuse lined up should anyome suggest he's selling out. He says he plans to donate the proceeds to charity. And by "charity," he's referring to organizations that feed the poor, by the way, not banks that need billions from Washington to stay afloat.

Bob Dylan album goes for early sales to Citi customers [Reuters]