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New bio sounds a high note for jazz pianist Vince Guaraldi

Friday, May 25, 2012

There’s a new biography of the late Grammy-winning Marin jazz pianist Vince Guaraldi, who, among other things, wrote and played the jazz tunes for the popular “Peanuts” cartoon TV specials years ago. It’s by Guaraldi archivist and Davis-based journalist Derrick Bang and is called, “Vince Guaraldi at the Piano.” Guaraldi died in 1976 at age 47, keeling over between sets at a Menlo Park nightclub after playing “Eleanor Rigby.”

Add: Paul Liberatore at the Marin IJ gives the book a shout-out while recalling Guaraldi in his prime:
Born in San Francisco's North Beach, Guaraldi moved to Marin in 1965, first into a pad on Millay Court on what's known as "Poets Hill" in Mill Valley. And then, after he'd begun to make it, into a rustic A-frame he bought off Shoreline Highway in Tamalpais Valley. A short, fireplug of a guy with a spectacular handlebar mustache that became his signature, Guaraldi drove a black Porsche and played all the cool spots in Marin in those days — the decadent Trident in Sausalito, the original Sleeping Lady Cafe in Fairfax, San Anselmo's Lion's Share, Jeanie Patterson's Sweetwater in Mill Valley.

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