Vince Guaraldi wrote some of the most popular music ever composed by a jazz artist--drawing on boogie-woogie, blues, bebop, Latin jazz, and bossa nova to create a magical and evocative sound heard by millions of listeners around the world through the Peanuts TV specials, beginning with A Charlie Brown Christmas" in 1965. Though the commercial success of those specials gave Guaraldi economic security, he continued to play jazz gigs at small clubs till the end of his life. Intense, exploratory and devoted to his craft, he left a profoundly jazzy stamp on American popular culture.
It's Jazz, Charlie Brown: the Vince Guaraldi Story" includes interviews with Guaraldi's son David, Peanuts producer Lee Mendelson, jazz critic Doug Ramsey (who wrote the liner notes for the excellent new anthology The Definitive Vince Guaraldi), Guaraldi friend and sideman Eddie Duran, and jazz pianist Luke Gillespie, who all give insight into Guaraldi as a musician and a man. We'll hear the wide expanse of the pianist's career on record, ranging from early appearances with Woody Herman and Cal Tjader and 1960s bossa-nova collaborations with guitarist Bola Sete to excerpts from Guaraldi's sacred concert and late-period fusion excursion, as well as his early piano-trio sides, several of his most popular Peanuts recordings, and his 1962 pre-Peanuts hit Cast Your Fate to the Wind."