I truly LOVE the music of Vince Guaraldi! I have been a fan of his music ever since I saw the Peanuts cartoons (It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown! & A Charlie Brown Christmas) as a young child back in the early 70′s. I didn’t know what jazz was, but I knew that I loved what I was hearing. Many years later, I realized that it was one of the first introductions of jazz to me at a very impressionable age. I also realized that the harpsichord, ARP oddyssey synthesizer and fender rhodes keyboards became some of my favorite sounds – and to this day, will always transport me back to that special period in my life.
Vince’s musical sensibilities are simply genius. His style is solely unique to him. I am amazed by the dexterity and complicated arpeggios that are present in his tunes. He apparently considered himself an inferior pianist. I tend to disagree. He may not have been perfect, but his spirit was present in it’s fullest in his playing and overshadowed any sense of inferiority or drawbacks, in my opinion.
Bill Melendez, the man behind the animated Peanuts cartoons, said that when he first heard Vince Guaraldi’s music married with the visuals, it was a match made in heaven. The music is both childlike and adult as the same time. The chemistry was beyond perfection. That particular combination works so well and the only other example of how music compliments the animation in that fashion is found in The Cat In The Hat cartoons from the 1970′s, featuring the Super funky musical themes by Dean Elliot. I wish they would release a CD compilation of his music from that era.
I finally picked up both Vince Guaraldi CD’s-The Lost Cues from the Charlie Brown Television Specials Vol 1&2. They were recorded in his studio prior to the finished scores that appeared in the final TV versions. The only other CD of unreleased music that I had was The Charlie Brown Suite and Other Favorites. All of these albums offer amazing insight into the music of Vince Guaraldi.
Vince Guaraldi’s musical contributions to the word are timeless and so full of spirit, that I think the world is a better place because of his talent and presence in the short period (47 years) he was alive on Earth.