Matt McCabe Has Succumbed to COVID

I was terribly sorry to learn that Matt McCabe had died from COVID.

This is a fun profile of Matt by the Daily Gazette.

Matt was the owner of Saratoga Guitar and Music Center. I knew him from his two terms as Commissioner of Finance from 2003 to 2008.

He was an energetic and thoughtful commissioner but his real love was music. He was a man who knew how to have a good time. I will miss him.

11 thoughts on “Matt McCabe Has Succumbed to COVID”

  1. I’m so sad. I did not know Matt well yet all interactions I had, especially when working at City Hall were quality and positive. My thoughts go to his family. This disease is so insidious and awful. This brings it home as to how awful.

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  2. My condolences to his family. Matt always had time to speak with you. We will surely miss this kind, friendly, & dedicated person/ businessman. There is a void on Broadway next to City Hall. R.I.P., Matt….

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  3. This one hurts.
    It certainly brings things home for me. I’m writing this in shock, but I must write this….

    I have had extensive interactions with Matt, both political and musical over the years, and there two remembrances of him from the music realm that I would like to share. Both of which are indicative of his quality of character in a sphere – where, quite frankly, his word was law – then and now.

    1) A few years ago, the very first 4th of July All-American celebration in Congress Park was partially run by the City, and was about to be a Grade-A disaster. The organizers (headed by a different City Commissioner who was frankly, a complete buffoon on several levels) failed to adequately plan for the fact that one of the bands they booked to be headliners needed six mics and a total of 12 PA inputs for amplified sound, whereas the PA they borrowed had a total of 4… and 2 microphones!

    It doesn’t take an audio engineer to know that this wasn’t going to fly – meanwhile there was a schedule, a restless crowd, Ben Franklin and fireworks to come… I wasn’t part of the organizers, but I knew who to call.

    On ZERO Notice, Matt authorized his people (at the time Saratoga Guitar was at 7 Caroline St.) to load up the proper amount of PA equipment, mics, cords, everything – into my vehicle. Within 10 minutes, the proper equipment was on the premises in the park. A short time later, the music was flowing, and I doubt most people had any idea what had happened. I remember telling Matt that he should charge the City a ton for the rental, but I doubt he even sent them a bill. When it came to the music, he was all about making the show happen. Everything else came behind that.

    2) My 2nd remembrance of Matt is more personal – and up to this point I believe no one knew this story except him and me.

    It was February 6, 2009. Super Bowl Sunday.

    And during the endless pre-game festivities, I stupidly got involved in an altercation, resulting in my butt being hauled into the Saratoga County jail for the first (and only, hopefully) time in my life. I had resigned myself to watching the game through a sliver in my cell door, 50 yards from the one TV in the group room. No game privileges for the newbie…

    But I knew who to call when they finally let me near a phone.

    Matt left his Super Bowl party immediately, posted my bail, and had me out by the second half. Pittsburgh won that day, but no one felt like a bigger winner than me. We drove back to town in silence, the game on the radio filling the void.

    He let me out on Broadway. With a “hang in there, it will get better.” And also, “Things will work out.” Stoic and strong – and then he was off – back to his party.

    The charges ended up being dismissed, but before that I got him back his money. He took the envelope I handed him at Saratoga Guitar without a word, just a nod. And I am sure that he never told anyone.

    I am just as sure that there are countless people who Matthew McCabe helped like this; although perhaps not exactly like this – but always there to help, as needed – when needed.

    Saratoga lost not only a friend to music; Saratoga lost a friend to Saratoga. And most importantly, Saratoga lost a friend to the human race. Rest in Peace, Matthew McCabe. It was a privilege, and my honor, to know you.

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  4. OMG this is terrible. He was such a great guy. We knew him as a Commissioner and as a friend. He helped our grand children in there quest for music and the right instrument. We knew his family and feel awful that they have to go thru this. Our prayers go out to his family.

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  5. Matt was an upbeat , engaging musician & entrepreneur. When the Downtown Business Association was just getting off the ground, he was always onboard with any crazy event Susan and I cooked up! His shop was Mecca to the fledgling teen musicians in town& I believe that Adam still has his first guitar Matt helped him select. May happy memories sustain his family and friends. ♥️

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  6. Matt worked along with me for 12 years during my tenure coordinating First Night Saratoga—he was the most amazing guy and friend—he totally assumed coordination of an entire performance venue every New Year’s Eve, featuring a terrific line-up of some of Saratoga’s most popular regional talent—AND he’d provide, set up, and monitor all the necessary techs for the night! He was such a supporter of all the fests and arts in the city, and Saratoga Springs has lost a valuable and irreplaceable friend and promotor of the entire community!

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  7. My heart breaks with an overwhelming sadness. I will always remember him for his joy filled spirit and his gift of beautiful music. I will miss him so much.

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  8. Matt was a kind and generous soul. He helped the Arts District on Beekman in so many ways when he was commissioner and many times after he left office. He did two concerts to help raise funds for the arts district and to help us be more visible in the city. He will be so missed!

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