A Charlie Brown Christmas (soundtrack)

A Charlie Brown Christmas
A drawing of some of the Peanuts gang running around a Christmas tree
Original 1965 vinyl release
Soundtrack album by
ReleasedDecember 1965
Recorded
  • October 1964 ("Linus and Lucy")[1]
  • September–October 1965[2]
StudioFantasy Recording Studios, San Francisco, California
Genre
Length40:25
LabelFantasy
Vince Guaraldi chronology
At Grace Cathedral
(1965)
A Charlie Brown Christmas
(1965)
Live at El Matador
(1966)
Singles from A Charlie Brown Christmas
  1. "Christmas Time Is Here (vocal)"
    Released: 1965[4]
  2. "Linus and Lucy"
    Released: 2012[5]
  3. "Christmas Time Is Here"
    Released: 2017[6]
  4. "O Tannenbaum"
    Released: 2019[7]
Alternate cover
Fantasy 1986/1988/2006 CD release cover art
Fantasy 1986/1988/2006 CD release cover art

A Charlie Brown Christmas is the eighth studio album by American jazz pianist Vince Guaraldi (later credited to the Vince Guaraldi Trio). The album was released in December 1965[8] in the U.S. by Fantasy Records and was Guaraldi's final studio album for the label. It is the soundtrack to the Christmas television special of the same name.

Guaraldi was contacted by television producer Lee Mendelson to compose music for a documentary on the comic strip Peanuts and its creator, Charles M. Schulz. Although the special went unaired, these selections were released in 1964 as Jazz Impressions of A Boy Named Charlie Brown. Coca-Cola commissioned a Christmas special based on Peanuts in 1965 and Guaraldi returned to score the special.

Guaraldi composed most of the music, though he included versions of traditional carols such as "O Tannenbaum".[3] He recorded some of the score at Whitney Studio in Glendale, California, then re-recorded some of it at Fantasy Records Studios in San Francisco with a children's choir from St. Paul's Episcopal Church in nearby San Rafael. The sessions ran late into the night, with the children rewarded with ice cream afterward.

Bassist Fred Marshall and drummer Jerry Granelli were credited as performing on the album.[3] It was voted into the Grammy Hall of Fame and added to the National Recording Registry of the Library of Congress.

On August 19, 2016, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) certified the album quadruple platinum for sales of 4 million copies.[9] In November 2014, it was the 10th best-selling Christmas/holiday album in the United States during the SoundScan era.[10]

  1. ^ Bang, Derrick. "Vince Guaraldi Timeline: 1964". fivecentsplease.org. Derrick Bang, Scott McGuire. Retrieved July 19, 2020.
  2. ^ Bang, Derrick. "Vince Guaraldi Timeline: 1965". fivecentsplease.org. Derrick Bang, Scott McGuire. Retrieved July 19, 2020.
  3. ^ a b c Haney, Shawn M. "A Charlie Brown Christmas". AllMusic. Retrieved November 15, 2018.
  4. ^ Cite error: The named reference Bang was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  5. ^ "Holiday 100: The week of December 15, 2012". billboard.com. Archived from the original on April 7, 2018. Retrieved March 8, 2019.
  6. ^ "Holiday 100: The week of January 7, 2017". billboard.com. Archived from the original on April 7, 2018. Retrieved March 8, 2019.
  7. ^ "Holiday 100: The week of January 5, 2019". billboard.com. Archived from the original on February 23, 2019. Retrieved March 8, 2019.
  8. ^ "Vince Guaraldi – A Charlie Brown Christmas". Discogs. Retrieved October 7, 2019.
  9. ^ "Gold & Platinum". RIAA. Retrieved November 15, 2018.
  10. ^ "The Gifts That Keep on Giving: Biggest Radio and Album Hits of the Holidays". Billboard. December 1, 2014. Retrieved November 15, 2018.