Thursday, May 10, 2012

Cast Your Fate to the Wind: Album photo credit

I constantly marvel at the degree to which the Internet permits instant communication between like-minded individuals, often from different parts of the world. Such conversations do much (in this particular case) to help keep a book alive, and shed additional light on details that remained undiscovered at the point of publication.

Uwe, an avid Guaraldi fan from Germany, recently purchased my book; during the customary riffling of pages that often prefaces the act of sitting down and reading, he noticed that the credit for the image of the LP jacket cover to Jazz Impressions of Black Orpheus (page 117) reads "photographer not indentified." This tweaked Uwe's memory, and he immediately sent me a note and directed me to this page on the Internet Archive Wayback Machine, which discusses the album cover and includes commentary by photographer Chas Weckler, who took the picture in question. Weckler even discusses what went into designing and obtaining the photo.

What a great coup! Another piece of information nailed down, and an engaging anecdote to go with it.

It should be noted, however, that Weckler is mistaken when he mentions that this LP cover -- aside from the Peanuts albums -- was the only one not to include a photo of Guaraldi himself. In the interests of generating some replies, props to the first person who correctly identifies the other Guaraldi albums -- released during his lifetime, on either the Fantasy or Warners label -- that don't feature Vince on the cover. I'll further specify that I mean albums starring Guaraldi as the leader of his own combo, as opposed to the many on which he performed as a sideman in somebody else's group.

I'm much obliged, Uwe. Do visit us again!


Unknown said...

Well, for starters, other non-Vince covers that pop to mind include:

- A Charlie Brown Christmas (soundtrack)
- Vince Guaraldi at Grace Cathedral
- Alma-Ville

And speaking of Alma-Ville, does anyone know who that is in that cover photo, where/what it is,or who took it?

Doug A. said...

Very interesting, and thanks for the link.

I, too, wrongly assumed that the couple on the cover were from the film (which underscores my need to actually see "Black Orpheus"). I wasn't aware that UPS was around in the 1950s (and long before, according to their website!). Who knew that my Guaraldi fandom could be so educational?

Keep up the great posts, Derrick!

Derrick Bang said...

Good start on an answer to the challenge, my "unknown" correspondent ... but I did specify ASIDE from Peanuts albums, so "A Charlie Brown Christmas" doesn't count. As a result, your list still isn't complete ... but it's close!

I've no information on the identity of the cute hammock sleeper in the "Alma-Ville" cover image, but I can tell you that the photo was taken by Ed Thrasher, who also handled the LP art direction.

Tim said...

Well, this just feels like cheating. A quick scan of:

gives us this list:
Modern Music from San Francisco
A Flower Is a Lovesome Thing
The Grace Cathedral Concert

Derrick Bang said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Derrick Bang said...

Excellent job, Tim! And it's not cheating if you take advantage of one of my own resource links; that's what they're here for! I've actually tossed this challenge to a few folks over the years, and I find it interesting that most overlook the Grace Cathedral album (although that wasn't the case with the first responder above). I suspect that doesn't make God too happy...

Unknown said...

6 years on I am still thankful for your compliments, Derrick (I am that Uwe from Berlin)! I'm still into Vince, more than ever.
I'm just planning a short trip to San Francisco this month. So some addresses from the ancestry article could be useful for me. Keep on with your great research work!!!