For how many times my music taste changes, my love for Disney songs and music will forever remain constant. If you’d come into my room, you’d hear Disney radio stations blasting out film, tv, theme park music all day, every day. It might even be in French and Spanish too.
The way I see it, Disney wouldn’t be Disney without its music. One can say that it’s the storytelling and the immersive world building that give Disney that defining feature, but to be cliché, the music is the glue that helps to combine all those different aspects together.
With a lot of music that has accumulated in the vault over the years, there is no denying that there are particular songs that have become particular anthems and themes for Disney in general. I have picked 5 that I believe are these songs – from their prominence across all forms of media, from the ideals of the studios, and to how we define Disney.
Disney was onto a winning song when this was written for Pinocchio. It’s beautiful, magical, spell-binding, and in my mind describes Walt Disney’s dream. It is the melody that we attribute to Disney – from Wishes, to the castle logo at the start of every film, and anything else relating to wishes and stars.
I’m pretty certain that I first heard this on a Disneyland advert when I was little and I always saw it as a Disney anthem even though I’d never watched Song of the South as a kid. For a film that is locked away in the vault, this song doesn’t half get a lot of promotion – it is on nearly every compilation album, and it’s used a lot in the theme parks from Main Street USA music to parades and Splash Mountain. It is also a very happy, bouncy song that brightens up any day.
Disney has a number of buzz words. Dream and wish are two such words and I think the fact that they are both significant in this song is a testament to Cinderella and the Disney Studios at that time. The 1950s was period of change for Disney and the world at large. It was a time when we all needed to remember the power of dream, having faith, and then taking action to restore our own beliefs. Walt Disney took that action by working towards the initial planning of Disneyland, and we’re all thankful for it. It’s all about following your heart and that’s what this song does better than anything.
“We’ll have fun, we’ll meet new faces, we’ll do thing and we’ll go places, all around the world we’re marching.”
Those lyrics are the pinnacle of the Disney community. We are one big club/family with Mickey Mouse as the leader because we wouldn’t be here if Walt Disney hadn’t created him and his cheerful, optimistic, happy-go-lucky persona. Mickey Mouse is a cultural icon all over the world and that influence over family media and entertainment still astounds me to this day. You hear the song and you feel a part of this expanding universe. Disney is the club you never leave, and if you do, it will always welcome you back with open arms.
Again it’s the force of Mickey Mouse and classic 1920-1930s Disney that makes this song special in a number of ways. The release date of the short film is Mickey Mouse’s official birthday, it made him that cultural icon, and paved the way for classic Disney music. Similarly with Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Da, we hear it in the theme parks in the Main Street USA tunes, and it’s part of the parades (the particular one that comes to my mind is the old Wonderful World of Disney Parade at DLP), and more recently it is now showcased at the beginning of every newly released animated feature film. It is a reminder that it all this started with a mouse.
So that’s it. All the 5 songs I believe to be the overriding Disney theme songs and melodies. What do you think?
Thanks for reading, and have a brazzle dazzle day!