Who knew? For those of us raised on the classic “Peanuts” holiday specials of the early 1970’s, the iconic music of Vince Guaraldi was just great music that stuck in your head. As it turns out, the musician who created those timeless tunes was in fact a giant in the jazz world. The new documentary film “The Anatomy of Vince Guaraldi,” which will screen as part of the seventh annual Tucson Film and Music Festival, delves into the career of this fascinating San Francisco musician who was so much more than what we all thought.
Using recently discovered documentary footage from 1963 as a starting point, director Andrew Thomas weaves in commentary from other jazz giants such as Dave Brubeck, and George Winston, along with comedian Dick Gregory, who often shared the stage with Guaraldi in the early jazz/comedy club days. By the time film critic Leonard Maltin appears, to comment on the legacy of Guaraldi and his role in exposing generations of kids and their families to Jazz, it’s almost an afterthought, given the legacy that has been laid out. A tragic loss, when Guaraldi died in 1976, this film truly gives voice and memory to a true trailblazing musical genius.
“The Anatomy of Vince Guaraldi” is playing on Sunday October 8 at 11:30am at the El Con 20 Cinemark Theatres.