Bulger's Beat: Trio performs lovable, memorable jazz classic - WSMV Channel 4

Bulger's Beat: Trio performs lovable, memorable jazz classic

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In 1965, a piano, bass and drums came together on a lively, then melancholy and gentle piece of jazz music. It was written for a children's Christmas television special, but no one was sure that kids would like it.

Nearly 50 years later, we are all still humming the Vincent Giraldi tune, and this weekend in Nashville, some talented musicians will be performing it live.

To most, the jazz tune is the sound of Charlie Brown.

"A lot of people say it reminds them of being a little kid," said Jen Gunderman, pianist in the Nashville trio 'The Ornaments.' "I think there's a good warm element of nostalgia for many people when they hear this music."

The Ornaments bring us all back to a time when Snoopy really was just a dog, and a lovable loser named Charlie Brown introduced us to Linus, Lucy and that toe-tapping complicated piece of 1960's jazz.

"That kids could appreciate this kind of music was a new notion then, but it succeeded so beautifully. But at the time it was a risky thing to do," Gunderman said.

The sound stuck and still does. Gunderman recalls playing one children's show where 6-year-olds stormed the stage.

"And I think that pure emotional response to music and wanting to be closer to all of us as we played it, that was one of the greatest things I've ever experienced on stage," she said.

And it's not the only thing she's seen.

"You can see grown-ups doing the Charlie Brown dances that the kids do on the special," she said.

It's a song that lives on, and is one more reason to say 'you are a good man, Charlie Brown.'

The other members of The Ornaments are James Haggerty on the stand-up bass and Martin Lynds on the drums.

The trio will play the entire soundtrack from 'A Charlie Brown Christmas' Saturday, Dec. 17, at 10 a.m. at Nashville's Belcourt Theatre. Tickets are $7 or $5 for Belcourt members.

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