The great jazz pianist David Benoit plays a Halloween favorite by Vince Guaraldi, the theme from It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.
Benoit was bitten by the jazz bug after watching a Charlie Brown special on television and listening to the music of Vince Guaraldi in 1965. “I was already a fan of the comic strip,” he says, “but when I heard that jazz piano trio, that was the defining moment when I decided that I wanted to play like Vince Guaraldi.”
“Benoit’s playing is appealing no matter what setting he’s in.”
— Contemporary Jazz
“The lyrical texture and rolling tempo is catchy. Benoit’s technique is forceful at times, and full of innate warmth.”
— Audiophile Audition
The Great Pumpkin Waltz / David Benoit • STNS 30165
Release Date: 10/02/2020
Recorded October 16, 2017 at Steinway Hall, New York City.
Producer: Jon Feidner
Engineer: Lauren Sclafani
Assistant Engineer: Melody Nieun Hwang
Editing: Jon Feidner
Mixing and Mastering: Daniel Shores
Executive Producers: Eric Feidner, Jon Feidner
Art Direction: Jackie Fugere
Production Assistant: Renée Oakford
Piano Technician: Lauren Sclafani
Piano: Steinway Model D # 607799 (New York)
About the Artist
For three decades, the GRAMMY®-nominated pianist/composer/ arranger David Benoit has reigned supreme as one of the founding fathers of contemporary jazz. He has just released his second CD on the Steinway & Sons label, It's a David Benoit Chrismas, featuring all of the Charlie Brown holiday classics. In 2017 Benoit released The Steinway Sessions, his Steinway label debut. It includes some of Benoit’s most well-known tunes as well as the world premiere recording of his “Etudes for the Contemporary Pianist”. Benoit’s thirty-fifth recording as a leader and his first with a vocalist, 2 In Love, was released in 2015 featuring Jane Monheit, the GRAMMY®- nominated, cool-toned chanteuse from New York, who burst on the scene in 1998 as the first runner-up in the Thelonious Monk International Vocalist Competition. Benoit received three GRAMMY® nominations in the categories of Best Contemporary Jazz Performance for “Every Step of the Way” (1989), Best Large Ensemble Performance for GRP AllStar Big Band (1996), and Best Instrumental Composition for “Dad’s Room”, the latter from the album Professional Dreamer (2000). In 2010 Benoit received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Smooth Jazz Awards.He has worked with an impressive potpourri of musicians including the Rippingtons, Emily Remler, Alphonse Mouzon, Dave Koz, Faith Hill, David Sanborn, CeCe Winans and Brian McKnight. Benoit’s film scores include The Stars Fell on Henrietta (1995), produced by Clint Eastwood, and The Christmas Tree, produced by Sally Field, which was voted Best Score of 1996 by Film Score Monthly.
Benoit has served as conductor with a wide range of symphonies including the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Asia America Symphony Orchestra and the London Symphony Orchestra. A longtime guest educator with the Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation, he received that organization’s Excellence in Music Award in 2001. His musical selections have been featured on The Weather Channel and his version of Vince Guaraldi’s “Cast Your Fate to the Wind” is included on a compilation The Weather Channel Presents: Smooth Jazz II (2008). Benoit also hosts a morning radio show on KKJZ 88.1 FM in Long Beach, CA.
About Steinway & Sons label
The STEINWAY & SONS music label produces exceptional albums of solo piano music across all genres. The label — a division of STEINWAY & SONS, maker of the world’s finest pianos — is a perfect vessel for producing the finest quality recordings by some of the most talented pianists in the world.