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Tag Archives: Peanuts

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I vividly remember watching A Charlie Brown Christmas for the first time, which was coincidentally the same year this album reissue dropped. The funny thing is, the main thing I recall is the commercials. This is probably because my parents recorded it for my brother and me on a Beta tape. We watched it every year over and over, commercial jingles and all, until our Betamax bit the bullet roughly the same time as Kurt Cobain.

I really, really REALLY wish I still had my Sony Vidimagic Betmax Projector.

It goes without saying that A Charlie Brown Christmas is a classic. The story, the style, the characters…all classic. But I might be so bold as to say those commercials recorded on that midget VHS were just as classic. You just can’t top the 7-up dot dude crashing his fire truck into a Christmas tree. Nor will weathermen ever again look so cool giving forecasts of heavy Utah snow. And their torsos won’t ever look as square…we should really bring back shoulder pads.

Elegant, confident edges.

Will five-year-olds today think that this season’s commercials are classics 20 years from now? I can’t possibly see anyone looking back fondly at the Verizon dude.  Seriously, that guy can go straight to hell.

Merry Christmas, you filthy animals.

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The back cover of this album perfectly conveys what Snoopy is all about:

I think if one has followed the Peanuts’ comic strip and particularly those segments that deal with Snoopy, one quickly becomes aware that one is reading installments of a fascinating allegory.  Snoopy is a very individual dog and has a special meaning to all of us.  Like all allegories, the significance of Snoopy really depends upon our own experience.  For example–to a child, Snoopy represents everything that a child wants to bein in his or her fantasy world…Snoopy is a pilot, Snoopy is a secret agent.  He can sit on a limb of a tree and hunch himself over and look like a vulture.  He can stalk his prey like a saber-toothed tiger.  He flies his doghouse and calls it his Sopwith Camel.  He plays baseball and, of course, battles the Red Baron.

It is the battle with the Red Baron that I think expresses the primary adult philosophy.  This battle is the battle between good and evil.  Snoopy, of course, representing good and the Red Baron evil.  However, the evil that the Baron represents is not the evil that really exists in the world today.  The evil is a gentle evil and in the battle nobody is supposed to get hurt.  In this conflict, namely of the simple truths that so often get lost in our hectic civilization come readily to the fore.  In its simplicity, this conflict becomes almost a romantic adventure.

Our recording of Snoopy’s Christmas was made with this philosophy in mind.  There is an underlying seriousness.  Snoopy’s Christmas basically exposes the futility of never-ending conflict.  This fact is particularly accentuated at Christmas time.

Side I of this LP presents a drama as fanciful as any child’s dream world involving all three of the Snoopy records.  It uses the medium of radio when radio didn’t really exist to tell the story.  We did this because there is a universality of timelessness represented by Snoopy’s battle against the Red Baron.  The battle against evil is yesterday, today, tomorrow and forever.

-Robert Schwartz

The Story of Snoopy vs. The Red Baron (Track 2)

Snoopy’s Christmas (Track 6)

Download the full album here.

Track List

1) The Story of Snoopy vs. The Red Baron

2) Snoopy vs. The Red Baron

3) The Story of the Return of The Red Baron

4) The Return of The Red Baron

5) The Story of Snoopy’s Christmas

6) Snoopy’s Christmas

7) I Say Love

8) Down Behind The Lines

9) It’s Sopwith Camel Time

10) So Right (To Be In Love)

11) Airplane Song (My Airplane0

12) It Kinda Looks Like Christmas