Later this month, the soundtrack to one of the greatest holiday television specials of all time will be re-issued on vinyl and CD. The special in question is the timeless presentation, A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving. While not the only Thanksgiving-themed TV special out there (Garfield’s Thanksgiving remains a favorite among many families out there along with Garfield’s other holiday specials), it is arguably the most well-known and beloved of its kind. Scheduled for release Oct. 20, the 21-track compilation boasts so much to appreciate beginning with its featured songs. This will be discussed shortly. The liner notes that accompany the soundtrack’s forthcoming re-issue make for their own engagement and entertainment and will be discussed a little later. The recording’s production rounds out its most important elements and will also be examined later. Each item noted is important in its own way to the whole of the forthcoming re-issue. All things considered they make the forthcoming re-issue of A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving’s soundtrack a welcome addition to any audiophile’s music library.
Lee Mendelson Film Productions’ forthcoming re-issue of the soundtrack to A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving is a presentation that Peanuts fans and audiophiles in general will appreciate. Its appeal comes in no small part through its featured songs. A total of 21 songs make up the collection’s 37-minute run time. What’s more, the songs are presented in largely chronological order as they appear in the TV special. This means that listeners can enjoy the special’s isolated music track in exactly the same order as in the TV special. It is a minor aesthetic matter on the surface, but that minor aesthetic really plays a bigger part in the overall engagement and enjoyment of this record. Even more interesting is that this soundtrack offers a handful of bonus alternate takes of songs that made the final cut for the TV special. Those alternate takes give listeners an even deeper understanding of and appreciation for the work that went into developing the special’s musical moods. All involved herein are to be highly commended for their work.
Staying on the matter of having all of the songs from the special featured here in chronological order from the original presentation, having the special’s isolated musical selections featured here is especially important in comparison to the soundtrack to It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown. For those who may be unaware, that soundtrack features the special’s musical offerings in chronological order, too. The issue is that it also includes some of the sound effects from the special but none of the dialogue. To that end, that imbalance easily leaves one scratching one’s head as to why such an approach was taken. It greatly does detract from the overall engagement and entertainment. Keeping all of this in mind, having the soundtrack to the Thanksgiving special isolated here serves to help audiences remain focused on the one key element herein and in turn keeping listeners all the more engaged and entertained.
The musical content featured in the soundtrack to A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving is just one of the positives worth noting in this re-issue. The liner notes that accompany the special – penned by Sean Mendelson — make for their own interest. Case in point is the revelation that famed composer/musician Vince Guaraldi (who handled the music for pretty much all of the Peanuts TV specials) handled the vocals for the beloved Woodstock theme, ‘Little Birdie.’ This is something not a lot of people know. Who would have thought that fun, light singing was performed by this legendary figure? Mendelson also raises how and why the sound in this soundtrack was so starkly different from that featured in the other Peanuts specials. He points out that in the case of this soundtrack, Guaraldi wanted to go in a different direction, and wanted what is known as the “East Bay Sound.” He discusses how Guaraldi brought in drummer Mike Clark to get that sound, and how things developed from there. That story in itself really deepens one’s appreciation for the final presentation, as the difference in sound and style really becomes all the more evident. Mendelson also takes the time to point out directly which tracks on this record are the bonus songs and what sets them apart from the final takes. The differences are in regard largely to instrumentation in the various tracks. In hearing those alternate takes aside from the final takes, the resultant effect is all the more appreciation for the time and work that went into developing the special’s musical body. Between all of this and much more within the liner notes, the whole therein makes the liner notes their own engaging and entertaining presentation. When they are combined with the soundtrack’s primary content, the whole therein gives audiences more than enough reason to add this soundtrack to their music libraries.
The overall content featured in the forthcoming re-issue of A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving’s soundtrack does more than enough to make the collection appealing for any listener. It is collectively just part of what makes the recording worth owning. The songs’ production rounds out the record’s most important elements. In listening closely, audiences can hear the discussions that take place between the musicians ahead of various performances. That little element adds to the positive aesthetic even more because it sort of takes listeners “behind the scenes” of the soundtrack’s original creation. The very sound in the songs is even more exhibition of the result of the work that went into the record’s production. Each song is so rich in its simplicity. It shows that plenty of work went into balancing all of the sound, and that said work paid off. The positive result of the production works with the record’s content to make the overall presentation such that it proves itself among the best of this year’s music re-issues.
Lee Mendelson Film Productions’ forthcoming re-issue of the soundtrack to A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving is an impressive offering that will appeal to a wide range of listeners. Its appeal comes in part through its songs. Audiences get in the songs, the special’s fully isolated musical content, unlike the soundtrack to It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown. The songs are also featured in exact chronological order from the TV special, making for even more engagement and entertainment. The liner notes that accompany the collection’s musical content make for their own interest. That is because of the background that they offer into the soundtrack. The production that went into the soundtrack puts the finishing touch to the presentation. It ensures the sound in each song is so rich in each arrangement’s simplicity. Each item examined here is important in its own way to the whole of the soundtrack. All things considered they make the soundtrack to A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving a welcome addition to this year’s field of music re-issues.
A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving’s soundtrack re-issue is scheduled for release Oct. 20. More information on the re-issue and other titles from Lee Mendelson Film Productions at https://mendelsonproductions.com.