Kamilah Taylor
A Charlie Brown Christmas. Possibly the best Christmas movie ever made. And it gave us one of the best Christmas albums (by Vince Guaraldi), another reason to love it. Interesting trivia, A Charlie Brown Christmas was the first prime-time animated tv special. It was also the first time Charlie Brown was on tv. It took a lot of convincing to get Charles Schulz to agree to move the Peanuts Gang from print to tv, but apparently once he started and Lee Mendelson, executive producer, brilliantly decided on Vince Guaraldi as the composer, things went full steam ahead. Of course the network was nervous because of Linus's little Nativity speech, the choppiness of some of the animation and the general anti-consumerism moral, but the ratings were off the charts and a Christmas tradition was born.

I wonder if Vince Guaraldi knew when he composed Linus and Lucy that it would become synonymous with Charlie Brown. It's one of my fave Jazz pieces. I was so excited a couple of Thanksgivings ago when I discovered that they play this in the shopping centers on Michigan Ave (Chicago). Weird that the Charlie Brown music isn't even named after Charlie Brown.

My other favorite from this album is Christmas Time is Here. It has a certain melancholy to it, a very different vibe from Linus and Lucy. Of course that matches Charlie Brown's mood (you can see in the clip below). Actually it kind of matches my mood this year - should I be worried that I'm empathizing too much with Charlie Brown?!

Do you have any favorite songs from Christmas TV specials/movies?


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