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Soundtrack Review

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It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown
Music from the Soundtrack


Composer: Vince Guaraldi
Label: Craft Recordings
Release Date: 26 August 2022

Craft Recordings release the definitive edition of Vince Guaraldi’s evocative soundtrack to the 1966 animated television special, It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown. Remastered from newly discovered analogue session reels, the album features seven previously unreleased alternate takes - all of which offer insight into Guaraldi’s creative process. The package also includes new liner notes by Peanuts historian Derrick Bang, with contributions by the family of Lee Mendelson, the Emmy and Peabody Award-winning producer and co-creator of the Peanuts animated specials. Additionally, a note by Mendelson (taken from the 2018 edition of the album) rounds out the release...

Those of us of a certain age only have to hear the opening bars to 'Linus and Lucy' and we're transported back in time, sat in our pyjamas watching TV.

Craft Recordings has released the soundtrack album to It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown in several formats, including multiple vinyl options. Available across all major retailers is a 45-RPM pressing on black vinyl, housed in a standard jacket, as well as a 33 1/3-RPM pressing on pumpkin-shaped translucent orange vinyl, housed in a clear sleeve, both accompanied by a four-page insert. Available exclusively at is a collectable edition 45-RPM pressing (limited to 500 copies) in a “Pumpkin Patch” splatter design. The album will also be available on CD and digital formats.

In 2019, not long before he passed away, Lee Mendelson, producer and co-creator of the Peanuts animated specials, was looking into the possibility of finding any of the original tapes from the recordings used to score the Peanuts specials. The following year, the team at Lee Mendelson Film Productions unearthed, in their vast archives, a treasure trove of materials from Vince Guaraldi, including the original analogue reels from the Great Pumpkin sessions.

Guaraldi's themes are bold, upbeat and instantly memorable. His music instantly conjures images of the Peanuts gang.

This 24 track (30 min, 11 sec) album is an essential purchase for those of us who grew up loving the holiday special. Guaraldi's music is still as fresh and exciting as it was on its original release. Hearing it again as an adult brings back all the warm memories that you could hope for.


Darren Rea

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