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My 15 Favorite Disney Songs

We got a little serious with those last articles on college basketball.  I think it’s time to bring it back to a less serious note and cuter topic; thus I issue a challenge to anyone to name something less serious and cuter than Disney.

Except for puppies!

I have compiled the absolute, 100%, no contest, superlative list of Disney songs which I now present to you as my top 15…buckle up, ghost rider!

#15 “Why Should I Worry?” from Oliver and Company

Billy Joel steals the show as Dodger, a street savvy pooch who appears to not have a proper breed; nonetheless, the little guy is just awesome.  Meawhile, Oliver attempts to gain his share of the hot dogs he and Dodger have stolen.  So there’s my synopsis of the part of the movie this song goes with.  Anyway, it was tough to knock some songs from Disney off the list, but how could I go against Billy Joel?  Plus he does us the word savoire faire, and who doesn’t love that?  This is just a feel good song, ain’t it?  I mean seriously.

#14 “Hakuna Matata” from The Lion King

Doesn’t everyone just love Timon and Puma?  The best line from perhaps the greatest Disney animated film of all-time is uttered by the farting warthog when he roars, “They call me ‘Mister Pig’!”  Aside from the lovable-ness of the two characters starring in this bit, “Hakuna Matata” is also the most feel-good song in any Disney film.  It takes us from the dark scary place of Simba’s fear, shame, and depression to a much happier and grub-filled world of eternal bliss where there is a distinct absence of murderous uncles to worry about and no water buffalo with the ability to run down a ninety degree incline.  This song is so joyous!

#13 “Everybody Wants to Be a Cat” from The Aristocats

The never failing Disney star power of Phil Harris (Little John in Robin Hood, Baloo in Jungle Book, and of course Thomas O’Malley in the Aristocats) is joined by a great name, Scatman Crothers, to deliver the most memorable song from the Parisian felines.  I wouldn’t recommend watching the video if you’re epileptic, because the scene is a little ridiculous with the colors and the cats and the racist Asian cat and the dancing cats and cats everywhere.  The only real question, is how many times has O’Malley used this routine with Scatcat to impress a little lady?  Their little dance routine seemed obnoxiously choreographed to have been impromptu.  Still love it though.

#12 “Friend Like Me” from Aladdin

I was clueless to the fact that Robin Williams played Genie until like three years ago, but I digress.  This is the fastest paced song we’ve seen so far as Robin Williams just hams as he describes to Aladdin his phenomenal genie powers and all that nonsense in what is a fantastic video to watch.  Although in the end, we see the sadistic nature of the genie as he taunts Aladdin with all these treasures and women and food, but suddenly takes it all away.  It’s like leading the horse with a carrot.  The Genie is an absolute bastard, enticing Aladdin with all these pleasures of life…damn you Robin.

#11 “Be Prepared” from The Lion King

The little haunted liar of Scar provides such a phenomenal backdrop for this creepy and eerie song sung by Claudius, wait I mean Scar.  imagining that Cheech and Whoopi Goldberg play two of the hyenas in this scene is a little mind numbing.  The third hyena affectionately named Ed provides some tremendous comic relief, which is nice…anyway back to the song.  The song is really the key to the plot of the movie as it reveals Scar’s plot to take over the Pride Lands from James Earl Jones.  Also amazing is that Scar seems to be capable of making land rise through the power of his voice.  It is interesting to imagine how J.E.J. will counter this ability…finally notice the Nazi-esque marching.

#10 “A Whole New World” from Aladdin

Many people have long considered this the benchmark for all other Disney songs, and it is understandable why.   This tune is without a doubt Disney’s best work regarding songs, but this is a list of my favorites and it turns out it only gets the 10 spot.  Anyway, it is crazy how fast the magic carpet is.  Now, we don’t receive a true indicator of how much time is spent on the carpet, but it flies from Agrabah to Giza to Athens all in one night, minimum.  Now, we cannot be sure where Aladdin is located, but whether it is in India, Saudi Arabia, or the Fertile Crescent, we know the distance just to Egypt is substantial, then it is another 713 miles to Athens across the Mediterranean Sea. In other words, that carpet is cooking.

#9 “Go the Distance” from Hercules

The first thing one notices during this song is the ridiculous size of Hercules’s hands and feet.  I feel sorry for the poor lad.  Combine that with his clear pidgeon-toe and there is no way he is making any Olympic team this year.  People make fun of Hercules in the movie, but never once do they target his extra-large appendages.  For any experienced bully, such deformities are the weakest points on a person and easiest to attack.  Clearly I think this song is about Hercules overcoming those physical traits in order to become an athletic superstar.  In all seriousness, the positive nature of this song just makes me tear up a little.  It makes me want to do everything to the absolute best of my abilities so I may also “go the distance”.

#8 “Part of Your World” from The Little Mermaid

It is in this scene we discover Ariel’s chronic hoarding disorder.  Her numerous amount of trinkets which she cannot help to understand neither the value nor the use of is incredible.  Also, Ariel uses the song as an opportunity to throw a little jab at King Triton by saying he admonishes her dreams and is holding her down from becoming the true champ of the day she believes she can be…in the end, I love Jodi Benson’s voice in this song.  It is such a like childish and sweet voice.  It’s the type of voice I would want singing my children to sleep at night.  It’s the only song Ariel sings on the entire soundtrack and she just went in there and killed it.

#7 “Kiss the Girl” from The Little Mermaid

We go back to back with Little Mermaid songs as the best love song in all of Disney makes an appearance at #7.  Sebastian reveals the influence he has over the water-world as the entire lagoon agrees to aid him in getting Eric to kiss Ariel in order to break Ursula’s spell thingy.  Disney also reveals a distinct dislike of eels, which honestly no one can blame them for that nonsense.  One of my favorite parts of any song on this is list is when the frogs hop on the oar and the song goes on “sha-la-la-la-la-la my oh my look at the boy too shy, ain’t gonna kiss the girl.  sha-la-la-la-la-la ain’t it absurd, a shame too bad, he’s gonna miss the girl”.  Ah, romance.

#6 “I Just Can’t Wait to Be King” from The Lion Kingn

Simba concocts this song as a plot to get away from Zazu in order to go visit the Hyena’s Shadow Lands/Elephant Graveyard.  In the second most elaborate plot ever (behind the Joker’s plan to steal Lao/kill Rachel Doss/turn Harvey Dent into Two-Face in the Dark Knight) the entire savannah joins in to trap Zazu underneath a Rhino.  The song itself is just really neat.  The fast-paced, jovial singing is a step away from Disney’s archetypal song.  Little Simba and Nala killed the singing, done by Jason Weaver and Lauren Williams.  When it’s all said and done, the song is just a good listen.  It’s like a radio song, not a Disney song.

#5 “Be Our Guest” from The Beauty and the Beast

Anyone who tells you they don’t love this song is lying, because every single part of it is awesome.  When Lumiere mutters, “We’ll prepare and serve with flair a culinary cabaret” I have to retrain my hands to keep from applauding all out.  The question I’m everyone else wants answered, though, is when the (spoiler…wait, who hasn’t seen Beauty and the Beast) spell is broken at the end, are there no dishes left in the castle?  Does the Prince need to go out and purchase a new china set?  What about every other inanimate object?  Are there no more escritoires?  No more dusters?  It worries me.  And does the Prince have any money left?  Has he been collecting taxes from his fiefdom?  I hope so, for Belle’s sake.

#4 “Colors of the Wind” from Pocahontas

You want an anthem?  Pocahontas has an anthem for you.  This song is literally just awesome.  I really wanted to put it higher, but in the end it only gained the fourth spot on the countdown.  I honestly don’t know if there is more emotion behind a Disney song than this one.  One can just feel the pure feeling behind the words being sung by Pocahontas (Judy Kuhn).  I mean if I was John Smith, I’d feel like a total asshole for acting like such a hotshot because of my immense travels.  Pocahontas just takes his pride and balls it up into a wad and throws it in his face, saying “You’re an idiot”.  Best of all is that she does it via song. I

#3 “I Won’t Say (I’m in Love)” from Hercules

I concede that Hercules’s Meg does not have the best voice on this list.  In fact, it is possible that she may have the roughest sounding voice of anyone on this list.  The song, however, is awesome.  The Muses give us a little flair in the background of the song pleading with Megara to just admit she has fallen for the large footed hero of Greece.  One thing which is apparent in the video is Meg was created by Disney to be a precursor to Shakira as she can move her hips in the absolute most amazing ways, somtimes dipping her abdomen beneath her hips.  Finally, clearly Disney takes advantage of the fat factor of humor by utilizing the short fat muse continuously.

#2 “Strangers Like Me” from Tarzan

Phil Collins from Genesis singing Disney?  Jeez, Disney has some big-time heavyweights in terms of singers and writers.  I mean we’ve already had Billy Joel, why not Phil Collins? Anyway, this song is just a vocal powerhouse.  Honestly it is one hell of a performance, and probably even a better song than my #1, but it doesn’t have the same meaning and doesn’t draw out my love like #1.  The only real thing I get from the video is how ridiculous it is that Jane ever falls for Tarzan.  He’s such a ape, like literally.  I mean of all Disney relationships, this is the absolute, 100% oddest.  Anyway, I love the song and Phil Collins kills it.  Every fiber of my being is affected when I hear the words being sung, especially the chorus…so huge.

#1 “Hellfire” from The Hunchback of Notre Dame

I had such a hard time deciding between #1 and #2.  I am literally in love with both of the top 2 songs, more than anyone should be with Disney music.  Claude Frollo may be one of the most hated and evil men in Disney, but he also gives one hell of a melodramatic performance.  I am a little scared that he’s on some sort of drugs whilst performing this because he has some scary hallucinations throughout.  Regarding why I love this song, well just like Meg’s song, we don’t have the highest quality of voices, but the song is just so well written and so well performed it beyond makes up for it.  Much like Pocahontas’s emotion-packed performance in “Colors of the Wind”, we once again see someone going for it, wanting it.  This song was my first love in terms of Disney vocalization.

So there you have it, my list of MY favorite 15 songs from Disney.  I know they all come from animated films, but who would ever pick a song from a non-animated one, seriously?




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