Sunday, November 01, 2009

Jazz Brunch Jam - Dr. Funk

Although the name Vince Guaraldi might not mean anything to you, I can almost guarantee that you've heard his work. His piano is the magic behind the music of Peanuts, that timelessly classic cartoon featuring Charlie Brown, Snoopy, Lucy, and the gang. All together, Guaraldi produced the music for 15 network Peanuts cartoon specials, and in doing so, assured his place in pop culture. Most probably don't realize though that his Peanuts work is but a small slice of his creative output, output that first began way back in the 1950's when Guaraldi was working behind countless other jazz musicians.

After nearly a decade of putting in his time though, Guaraldi finely starting tasting success for himself. This success eventually landed him the gig of scoring the Peanuts' specials and going down in the history books. For those of you who'd like to dig deeper into his material though, Fantasy Records released a two disc compilation of his work last month which is the perfect method of doing so. Of course there are some selections from Peanuts (including the appropriately seasonal Great Pumpkin Waltz below), but there are also songs from his many other albums. Accompanying the CDs are liner notes which do a pretty good job of outlining his career, as short as it was (he died at only 47 in 1976). Listen to the following two tracks from Dr. Funk (as he was known), and then look into The Definitive Vince Guaraldi.

Visit his website, this release's label Fantasy Records, and become his friend on MySpace.

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