Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Orpheus rising ... again!

Between the new and improved score for It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown (released on August 26) and the five-disc “Definitive, Super Deluxe Edition” of A Charlie Brown Christmas (coming on October 14), this already has been a banner year for Guaraldi fans.


As the old television advertising catch-phrase promised … But wait, there’s more!


Craft Recordings will release two enhanced editions of Jazz Impressions of Black Orpheus in the next several months.


First up is the two-CD Deluxe Edition, scheduled for release on November 18. It also will be available in a digital configuration, and a three-disc vinyl format, the latter expected to ship by February 24, 2023. This edition features oodles of bonus tracks.


It will be followed by a Small Batch, One-Step Pressing vinyl edition of the original album (no bonus tracks), also expected to ship by February 24, 2023.

Additional details about both can be found here, and do check out this sleek promotion video.


I’ll also supply some pertinent data.

The Deluxe Edition features 16 bonus tracks, 12 released for the first time, with outtakes and alternate takes of nearly every track on the original 1962 LP. The package is produced by Nick Phillips, and includes new in-depth liner notes by Andrew Gilbert, a veteran jazz writer for the San Francisco Chronicle, the San Jose Mercury News, KQED Arts and other outlets.


The track list is as follows, in the two-CD configuration:


Disc 1:

“Samba de Orfeu” 5:42

“Manhã de Carnaval” 5:50

“O Nosso Amor” 4:56

“Felicidade” 4:49

“Cast Your Fate to the Wind” 3:10

“Moon River” 5:21

“Alma-Ville” 5:00

“Since I Fell for You” 4:23


“Samba de Orfeu” (Short Version: Take 1, Set 3, Previously Unreleased) 3:29

“Samba de Orfeu” (Long Version: Take 1, Set 3, Previously Unreleased) 5:48

“Manhã de Carnaval” (Take 1, Set 3, Previously Unreleased) 6:32

“Manhã de Carnaval” (Take 2, Set 3) 6:17


Disc 2:

“O Nosso Amor” (Take 1, Set 3, Previously Unreleased) 5:08

“O Nosso Amor” (Take 2, Set 4) 5:00

“Felicidade” (Take 2, Set 2) 4:55

“Felicidade” (Take 4, Set 3 Previously Unreleased) 4:58

“Cast Your Fate to the Wind” (Take 2, Previously Unreleased) 3:02

“Cast Your Fate to the Wind” (Take 3) 3:04

“Cast Your Fate to the Wind” (Take 5, Previously Unreleased) 3:00

“Alma-Ville” (Take 2, Previously Unreleased) 5:03

“Since I Fell for You” (Take 3, Previously Unreleased) 4:21


“Jitterbug Waltz” (Take 1, Previously Unreleased) 6:53

“Jitterbug Waltz” (Take 1A, Previously Unreleased) 6:25

“Jitterbug Waltz” (Take 2A, Previously Unreleased) 6:36

Preview "Cast Your Fate to the Wind" (Take 5, Previously Unreleased) here.

(As wonderful as all these freshly released takes are, it's a shame this package doesn't include Ella Jamerson's vocal version of "Cast Your Fate to the Wind," backed by Guaraldi's trio, which still remains unreleased. That would have been a particularly delectable bonus.)



The Small Batch edition is limited to 3,000 copies worldwide. Each pressing is individually numbered and encased in a foil-stamped, linen-wrapped slipcase featuring an acrylic inset of the original artwork. The vinyl disc — extractable through a frictionless ribbon pull-tab — is housed in a reproduction of the album’s original, tip-on jacket and protected by an archival-quality, anti-static, non-scratching inner sleeve. 


This edition has new liner notes by Yours Truly, who is jazzed to note (apologies for the lack of modesty) that Craft’s publicity regards me as “the foremost Guaraldi historian.” That’s pretty cool.

So … fatten up your bank account, because it’s gonna be an expensive couple of months! 

Wednesday, September 14, 2022

Vinyl madness 2022

Here we go again...

The vinyl variants of the Charlie Brown Christmas soundtrack album — an annual merchandising gimmick that has been going strong since 2015 — obviously have been selling well. Concord must be pleased ... particularly since it's quite likely that these sales helped push the album to its spectacular position on the Billboard charts last December, as detailed in this earlier post.

This year's batch will bring the overall total to somewhere slightly north of three dozen, which is astonishing. (And I wonder how many folks have all of them...!)

Important detail: All of these variants will use the album's original mix and mastering, not the new 2022 mix coming with the Deluxe Edition in October.

Let's take a look at what's in store for this holiday season. All items cited below will hit stores on Friday, September 16.

Concord/Craft will tempt us with this lovely "skating pond" vinyl.

Target's green and gold disc will be packaged with a special poster.

Barnes & Noble has a gorgeous picture disc, with different images on the two sides.

Urban Outfitters features this tantalizing red and green "splatter" vinyl.

Walmart has this intriguing red vinyl, with gold flecks.

This "snowstorm" disc is a Record Store Day "Essential."

Finally, vinylmeplease was a late entry, with this olive-green disc.

(I dunno ... olive green just doesn't say "Christmas" to me!)

This is all I know about at the moment, but it's entirely possible that one or more additional outlets will jump on board, as autumn proceeds. If so, I'll add them to this post ... so keep checking back.