It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown: Listen to Unreleased Take of Iconic Song (Exclusive)

There's a number of iconic elements from It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown, including its story and its visuals, but arguably the most famous element of the special is the music from Vince Guaraldi. While the music from the 1966 PEANUTS special has been available on a variety of platforms, but back in 2020, analog tapes full of Guaraldi's recordings for the special were discovered, which are set to be included on a definitive release of It's the Great Pumpkin's soundtrack available later this year from Craft Recordings. Listen to "Great Pumpkin Waltz (Alternate Take 2)" below and grab the definitive release of It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown (Music From The Soundtrack) from Craft Recordings on August 26th.

Click here to stream "The Great Pumpkin Waltz (Alternate Take 2)."

Craft Recordings describes the release as "the definitive edition of Guaraldi's evocative soundtrack to the 1966 animated television special, as this album reissue contains the original analog session reels for It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown, previously thought lost to time.

"Remastered from newly discovered analog tapes, the album features seven previously unreleased alternate takes -- all of which offer fascinating insight into Guaraldi's creative process. The package also includes new liner notes by PEANUTS historian Derrick Bang, with contributions by the family of Lee Mendelson, the Emmy and Peabody Award-winning producer and co-creator of the PEANUTS animated TV specials. Additionally, a note by Mendelson rounds out the release."

(Photo: Craft Recordings)

Regarding the track, Bang shares, "You'll find five versions of 'Great Pumpkin Waltz' on this album, each of them quite distinct. Track 7 -- 'Great Pumpkin Waltz (Reprise)' -- is more than a minute longer than what's heard in the show, allowing us to enjoy a never-before-heard piano, flute, and electric guitar bridge. Similarly, pay attention to how different Guaraldi's keyboard noodling is, in the two shorter versions gathered together as track 9. The real treat, however, is track 22 -- 'Great Pumpkin Waltz (Alternate Take 2)' -- which finds the flute and guitar taking the melody in succession, against Guaraldi's soft comping on keyboard and (here's a surprise!) some high treble riffs on a celesta."

Back in 2019, not long before he passed away, Lee Mendelson (Executive Producer of the TV Special) had an important request for his children: to find any of the original recordings from the PEANUTS scores. When a global pandemic hit in 2020, the younger Mendelson's (Jason, Glenn, Lynda, and Sean) and the rest of the team at Lee Mendelson Film Productions suddenly had plenty of time on their hands -- and spent the better part of a year exploring their vast archives. Among their discoveries was a treasure trove of materials from Vince Guaraldi. One of the most exciting finds, however, were the original analog reels from the Great Pumpkin sessions -- which, until this point, were considered lost to time. Discovered in boxes labeled "Big Pumpkin Charlie Brown" and accompanied by detailed session notes, the tapes also included a multitude of alternate takes.

Grab the definitive release of It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown (Music From The Soundtrack) from Craft Recordings on August 26th.  

Will you be picking up the new release? Let us know in the comments or contact Patrick Cavanaugh directly on Twitter to talk all things Star Wars and horror!