isn’t a more universally beloved catalog of piano trio jazz than the music the
late Vince Guaraldi created for the Peanuts cartoons that nearly four generations of children have enjoyed since 1965.
This brand new collection brings together the various character themes the late
Italian-American jazz icon composed for Charlie Brown and his pals until his
untimely death in 1976. And while some of the usual suspects are appropriately
featured here, most notably the iconic “Linus and Lucy” and the Snoopy ode “Joe
Cool”, what makes this set a must-own is the lesser-known nods to certain
notable Peanuts characters, including “Peppermint Patty”, “Sally’s Blues”, the
six-minute bop workout “Frieda (With the Naturally Curly Hair)” and “Little
Birdie”, a funky homage to Snoopy’s fine feathered sidekick Woodstock featuring
Guaraldi in a rare vocal turn.
last two tracks on Peanuts Portraits come from new age piano great George Winston, a longtime Guaraldi apostle, who
offers his own versions of “Linus and Lucy” and “The Masked Marvel”, an obscure
television cue based off a little-known Snoopy persona of the same name.
Hopefully one of these days Concord
will get around to putting together a whole box set of the music Vince Guaraldi
wrote for all 16 Peanuts cartoons he scored. But until then, Peanuts
Portraits makes for a fine stopgap.
Standout Tracks: “Linus and Lucy”, “Blue Charlie Brown”, “Sally’s
Blues”, “Frieda (With the Naturally Curly Hair)” RON HART