Jazz legend Jerry Granelli, of Charlie Brown Christmas fame, dies at 80

Jerry Granelli, jazz legend and gifted music trainer finest identified for his mild drumming on the soundtrack to A Charlie Brown Christmas, has died. He was 80.

A message posted by the Jerry Granelli Facebook web page on Tuesday mentioned he was hospitalized in Halifax in December with inside bleeding and spent two months in intensive care. Although he recovered sufficient to finally go dwelling, the ordeal exacerbated other long-term health points, the put up mentioned.

Granelli died Tuesday morning at his dwelling in Halifax.

Longtime buddy and CBC music producer Jeff Reilly, who has recorded three albums with Granelli, referred to as the jazz big a “rich character.”

“He could be extremely kind and warm and generous, but other times he could be really demanding and, let’s say, right to the point,” Reilly instructed the CBC’s Information Morning Halifax. “But I think that was all in the spirit of trying to get the best out of others.”

Granelli’s musical profession spanned greater than 60 years and has been acknowledged by the Grammy Awards, the Junos and the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. (Stefanie Marcus)

Granelli’s drumming profession spanned greater than 60 years and resulted in additional than 30 albums.

Granelli “pretty much played with everybody” as a session musician, Reilly mentioned, and carried out with the likes of the Grateful Dead, Lou Rawls, Mose Allison, Sly Stone and, in fact, Vince Guaraldi. 

He lived in San Francisco, Colorado and Seattle and finally moved to Halifax within the late Nineteen Eighties.

His compositions have been acknowledged by the East Coast Music Awards, the Junos, the Grammy Awards, the National Library of Congress Sound Archives, and the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, which inducted him for his function within the psychedelic outfit Light Sound Dimension, or LSD.

Granelli was a pure at drumming at a younger age and received many music competitions. (Submitted by Jerry Granelli)

As a drummer, Granelli had unimaginable vary and a novel sound, Reilly mentioned.

“He could get sounds out of the drums that nobody else could — and extremely subtle up to, you know, huge, loud, powerful blasts of energy.”

He was finest identified for his efficiency of A Charlie Brown Christmas with the Vince Guaraldi Trio, recorded in at some point over three hours. The TV particular was launched in 1965 and has been broadcast yearly to generations of youngsters and followers.

Granelli carried out in A Charlie Brown Christmas as a part of the Vince Guaraldi Trio. (Walt Disney Television by way of Getty Images)

For a few years, Granelli refused to carry out that music as a result of he did not wish to be outlined by it, however he later made peace with the legacy.

Reilly mentioned he as soon as requested Granelli if it bothered him that amid his huge and assorted musical profession, he was principally identified for that one album.

“He said, ‘No, I don’t mind at all.’ And he said, ‘I’m grateful.'”

In current years, Granelli started touring a reside model referred to as Tales from A Charlie Brown Christmas.

“It was for him a way of giving back,” mentioned Reilly. “And people loved him for it and he loved to do it. He was like, you know, Father Christmas.”

Granelli practised Tibetan Buddhism, which helped inform his musical observe. (Scott Irvine c. 2019)

Granelli was additionally a sought-after trainer who taught in Berlin, southeast Asia, Italy and throughout the U.S. and Canada.

His present as a trainer was to assist college students “get absolutely real” of their efficiency, Reilly mentioned.

“He was able to get people to the heart of it. I think he taught people how to listen.”

Granelli was a practitioner of Tibetan Buddhism, which Reilly mentioned knowledgeable his musical observe and educating model.

“It was contemplative meditation from the Buddhist tradition, the idea of being in the moment and learning to let go of your own desire to make it in your image and learn how to listen to what was actually going on and respond to the music that is just there.”

On Sunday, simply two days earlier than his dying, Granelli participated in a creative music workshop called Art in Everyday Life, hosted by the TD Halifax Jazz Festival.

A Facebook put up on Tuesday attributed to his son, J. Anthony Granelli, mentioned Granelli will be missed by his three kids and 5 grandchildren.

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