Sunday, January 16, 2022

New projects

Pandemic-enforced isolation has a few benefits, such as encouraging folks to finally tackle massive, long-postponed projects of one sort or another. I mean, really; what else were we able to do with our time?

The folks over at Lee Mendelson Film Productions spent the past year and change digging through their music archives, which prompted some happy discoveries: wonderful Guaraldi artifacts, some of which may have been thought lost; additional details will follow, as plans for mainstream release can be finalized.

One of their many goals has been to enhance Guaraldi's sheet music library, by releasing more fulsome expressions of his genius Peanuts work. They've started with 18 of Guaraldi's less well-known themes and cues, which now are available via Hal Leonard Publishing as online folios. They aren't simple, "E-Z play" arrangements for all ages; these are solid transcriptions that'll require at least some keyboard chops.

Click each title to be taken to the relevant SheetMusicDirect page.

"Little Red-Haired Girl" (a preferable title for a cue originally called "Trio Ad Lib" when used in You're in Love, Charlie Brown)

Have fun! More will follow, as long as this initial set generates sufficient interest. 


Across the border in Canada, the Community Foundation of Nova Scotia has unveiled the Jerry Granelli Legacy Fund, in recognition of the jazz drummer — and long-ago Guaraldi sideman — who passed last year.
The fund is dedicated to carrying on Granelli's unique approach to teaching, and to the nurturing of the improvising arts community he created in Nova Scotia, which was his home for many years, and where — in addition to his live performances — he worked as an educator and community builder.

His unique teaching approach is embodied in the Creative Music Workshop, established in 1996 with fellow Halifax musicians Don Palmer (sax) and Skip Beckwith (bass).

The Workshop has been run in collaboration with the Atlantic/Halifax Jazz Festival since its inception. Today it is an eight-day intensive program grounding participants of all ages, skill levels, and artistic disciplines in the fundamentals and practice of improvisation in music and life. 

This is a lovely honor ... and it makes me want to visit Nova Scotia!

(When such travel once again is safe and practical, of course...)


Doug A. said...

Wow! Glad to see that the Mendelson's are doing that. Hoping it generates enough commercial interest to justify further spelunking into their archives!

It's cool that the Sheet Music Direct website allows you to play (MIDI-based) previews of the Guaraldi sheet music. From the sound of it, it seems like the transcriber did an excellent job of capturing the originals.

Mark said...

Wow, this is exciting! I'm only a beginner when it comes to piano, so the sheet music is not for me—but those are some fairly obscure, never-released songs. And the preview of "Graveyard Theme" has elements that are not on the special or the 2018 release. If the sheet music has these songs, I'm looking forward to learn more about this vague statement: "additional details will follow, as plans for mainstream release can be finalized."

Anonymous said...

There are title names for cues here that are now different from both your Guaraldi cue sheet ("Sassy Sally" is labeled a variation on "It's a Mystery") as well as the scuppered titling in the Lost Cues CD's ("Little Birdie" named as "Cops & Robbers" etc). What's heard as "Woodstock's Dream" here is the untitled escalator theme in the Easter special, while the title's name I've associated up until now as the amped rock title theme. So what's official, and how's it that the John Scott Trotter cue "Graveyard Theme" that's named as a Trotter cue in the coffee table making-of book, is now Vince's tune?

Derrick Bang said...

Titling of minor interior cues continues to be a cheerful give-and-take, and I'm not sure we'll ever get fer-shur answers for some of them. But "Graveyard Theme" is and always was a Guaraldi theme, despite any claims to the contrary; it's immediately recognized as an arrangement of a tune he called "D Minor-Major Groove," when recorded with a trio back in 1958 (a session never released to the general public), and which pre-dates any work on "Great Pumpkin" by eight years.

Jim M. said...

I just saw the announcement regarding the 2022 edition of Craft's Great Pumpkin soundtrack (from session recordings!!) - is this the first of (hopefully) several announcements regarding "mainstream releases" from the MFP archives?

Derrick Bang said...

Possibly (and I stress that). The Mendelsons still are searching through their archives, so the final word remains uncertain at the moment. And — needless to say — it'll also depend on how well this first one sells. So tell all your friends and family members to buy one!