My Favorite Disney Songs: #30-26
Oh this section is amazing. From here on out, I’ll have less and less to say about all the songs, just because they’re so, so good. The most I’ll have to do is explain why they went here and not higher.
But as for this section — we have a nice Disney female ballad, an amazingly fun love song and probably the strongest song to come out of Disney since — well, another song in this section — one of the best mood-setter songs Disney’s ever done, and the most swingingest song in the Disney catalogue that all the hip cats know where it’s at.
Look, I’ve written like fifteen of these things so far, cut me some slack. I have to keep it fresh somehow.
30. “Reflection,” from Mulan
Two Mulan songs in a row. Purely coincidental. I was going to change it, but that actually would have been interfering simply to make it not look coincidental.
What a beautiful song, though. What more do you need to say about it? Just listen to it. That’s why it’s here.
But in the interest of keeping space between songs, just to keep the next one enough of a surprise for when you scroll down —
While I do love this song, it is short. That kept it from going higher. It’s definitely more universal than “I’ll Make a Man Out of You,” so that’s why it ranked higher than that. But, everything that went higher than this ended up being something that hit on all cylinders. You’ll see what I mean.
Though — A+ on the theme. Questioning your place in the world and your own identity versus what is expected of you. Plus, the notes the respective singers hit (in each version) — damn, that’s a good song.
P.S. though — no way is it that easy to get makeup off like that. Wipe, wipe. What is this, an etch-a-sketch?
29. “That’s How You Know,” from Enchanted
To anyone who doesn’t think this song should go this high — fuck you. You have no soul.
Watch that video and tell me this isn’t one of the best things they’ve ever done. And it’s self-referential too. It plays off the characters always bursting into original song, and is packed with Disney (and even non-Disney) references. And it even moves the plot along. This is a perfect song.
I can’t put it higher than this, though, simply because it’s not — time hasn’t told on this one yet. When you see everything that’s higher — age helps in a case like this. But trust me — in twenty years, this is gonna be one of their most classic songs.
And now — well, I was gonna say we’ve gotten past all the recent stuff, but there’s still quite a bit of relatively recent songs. But this was our last song, post-2000. And there’s only one song left, post-1995. After that, it’s all Golden Age of Disney and then absolute, positively classic Disney.
Just wait until you see the string of songs coming up from here on out. Get ready. Because if you’re into these songs as much as I am, these songs will actually make you giddy with excitement.
28. “Ev’rybody Wants to Be a Cat,” from The Aristocats
I’m a sucker for a great jazz song. They don’t get much better than this. It’s so great. It starts off so simply and then changes tempo several times — it’s just perfection from beginning to end.
Sure, it’s not much in the way of lyrics or universality or anything, but they don’t come much more fun than this. Plus the visuals are pretty great. Nice and hallucinogenic.
I don’t have much to say here. You can just hear why it went where it did.
Also, the reasons it’s not higher, I already said — it’s great and all, but there’s not much in terms of lyrics, and it doesn’t hold a candle in terms of it’s message to the ones that are coming up next.
But goddamn can those cats play some goddamn jazz.
27. “Kiss the Girl,” from The Little Mermaid
What, you don’t have a crab that makes fuck music?
Talk about subliminal music. Right?
It’s also great how the whole thing is based on peer pressure and questioning one’s manhood. It’s like, “Come on — look at her. Look at her! You know you want her. You know you do. Go on. Go do it.” And then when he doesn’t, “Aw, looks like someone’s bein’ a little bitch!” That’s pretty great.
Everyone knows this scene. Obviously I don’t need to explain at all why it’s where it is on the list. So I won’t bother. But it’s a great song and is one of the more memorable song moments in Disney film history.
Reasons it didn’t go higher — because it’s plot-specific, and mainly just because of the other 26 songs. From here on out, pretty much it’s just gonna come down to “Just look at what’s next. That’s why it’s not higher.”
I’m so bad at making lists. I’m either like, “Fuck you, I stand by my choice,” or am like, “Just look at it. Of course it goes here.”
Yeah, I don’t care. The point is to listen to the music. You know I’m just sitting here, drinking and making up shit to write underneath anyway. Let’s not pretend it means anything all of a sudden.
26. “You’ll Be in My Heart,” from Tarzan
I fucking love Phil Collins. Do I need to say anything here?
This song is better than that entire movie. The reason this works is because, like most songs written by musical artists and not Disney composers — it’s a song that works on its own first, and then also has something to do with the plot of the film.
This is a love song first, and also is about Tarzan. Because I’m guessing Phil Collins took the story of the film and boiled it down to a set of core themes and wrote songs based around those themes.
So basically it’s the opposite of the Randy Newman method.
On an unrelated note, I’d like to one day be able to conceive a child using something called the “Randy Newman” method.
(Note: “You’ve Got a Friend in Me.”)
(I know. I’m awesome.)
But this song is perfect. Of course it goes here.
The reason it stays out of the top 25 is because it doesn’t fit in the film. Disney songs, post-1995 seem to be less and less about the films and aren’t sung by the characters. They just play over montages and stuff. I don’t like that. I have to dock it a little bit because of that. (Not that it’s that much, since it’s still #26.)
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Okay. Tomorrow is the top 25.
Do I need more of a tease than that?