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Vince Guaraldi

jazz pianist and composer
Born: July 17, 1928
Birthplace: San Francisco, California

Jazz pianist Vincent Anthony Guaraldi is best known for creating the "Charlie Brown sound" for such Peanuts television specials as A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965). In the 1950s the amiable San Franciscan with the handlebar mustache had recorded with Cal Tjader and traveled with Woody Herman's orchestra. The 1960s saw Guaraldi leading his own jazz groups. His breakthrough album Jazz Impressions of Black Orpheus (1962) featured the Emmy-winning tune “Cast Your Fate to the Wind.” Two years later Guaraldi made history with his A Boy Named Charlie Brown, which defined the Peanuts sound and introduced a generation of children to modern jazz. He also wrote an acclaimed 1965 jazz work for a choral Eucharist at San Francisco's famed Grace cathedral.

Died: February 6, 1976

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