Top ten time….
Not much to say here. Everything is perfectly represented. I think we can all agree that these songs are the ten best songs Disney’s ever done. There’s really not that much you could swap. (And if you do think something other than these ten belong in the top ten, I’d be fascinated to find out what it is.)
I don’t need to set this up any further. Just — prepare to get happy: (more…)
From here on out, it’s singalong time.
There’s gonna be almost nothing underneath each song. We’re just gonna listen to them and sing along.
Obviously these are the best Disney songs. Let’s not even pretend. At this point we’re just celebrating the brilliance that is Disney songwriting. (P.S. 20-16 can be found here.)
Here we go, folks — 15-11: (more…)
Time for the top 20.
This section — well, let’s just say, the songs in this section fit perfectly within this section. They can’t go any higher, and they’re definitely ones that should be ranked higher than the stuff in the previous section (which, 25-21 can be found here).
There’s also one song in this section that I love so so much. To the point where it completely transcends its film. I’m not even going to waste time. Let’s get right into it.
20-16, here we go: (more…)
Have you been keeping track so far? Do you know what songs haven’t come off the board yet? (If you want to recap, you can find the previous section here.)
We’ve reached the top 25. I’m going to do my best to provide adequate space in between each song, so that you get the full benefit of surprise and excitement when each one comes up.
In terms of what’s in the top 25 — you can really only haggle with me about one song. I guarantee you that if you were to make your list of top 25 Disney songs, at least — 20, to be liberal — would be the same as mine. It’s just obvious which ones are the best.
This section skews heavily toward one decade in particular, and songs that I felt, while some of the best they’ve ever done, do have some added help by the fact that they came out when I was a child. So while I grew up with Disney, I really grew up with these songs. They’re just not as universal as the rest of the stuff on the list. But, on the other hand — we all know they’re amazing. So this section will be the ones that, while of top 25 distinction, easily fall to the bottom of this particular tax bracket.
It’s the top 25, people. Get excited.
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.
Here’s 30-26: (more…)
All right — top 35. There’s really only one song left that people would haggle over where I ranked it, and it’s the first song on this list. But like I said in the previous article — I let my childhood be the tiebreaker. One spot is meaningless.
But, man, oh man — the rest of this section is off the fuckin’ chain! (Previous section can be found here.)
The one thing you’ll notice about this section is — the songs (most of them, anyway) either don’t make any sense, lyrically, or they only work as well as they do because of the accompanying scene in their film. You’ll see what I mean when we get to them. But — the songs in this section, while no one would question them being in the top 40 (outside the one I already mentioned, and even then, most people might throw it in there anyway), they do make you think, “Yeah, they really don’t mean anything. And they’re still great. Huh…”
Here are 35-31: (more…)
All right. The top 40. I’m excited. I feel like Top 40 is really where it’s at for music anyway (since, you know — that radio show and all that). So even though the list is the top 100, and seems to be split between 50 and 50, I feel like the top 40 is really the important list. (45-41 are here.)
And we begin our top 40 with — well — actually, you know what? For once, I’m just going to let the songs speak for themselves. We’re going to reset and do a cold opening, get everyone in the mood, and then just get right into the music.
The 41-50 portion of my list will probably be the most contentious part of the list. If we’re going to get into where most people would disagree with my specific rankings, it’ll be here. Because this is really where my personal tastes affect the list most. (50-46 can be found here.)
It’s not that the songs in this section are bad, it’s just — the first three on this specific portion probably won’t appeal to Disney purists, who feel more classic songs should go high on the list simply because they’ve been around for so long. I’m of the opinion — if I love the song, and I listen to it all the time, then it should be ranked higher. So, the first three songs today might not strike everyone as top 50 songs. But you know what? I don’t care. I love them.
Plus, once we get past this section (and you’ll see it start to happen at the end of this section), after this it’s pretty much all legit “classic” Disney stuff. The top 40 is just loaded with amazing song after amazing song. I’m not kidding. Just wait. It’s amazing.
So, indulge me my personal favorites that I feel are top 50 songs, and then after that, we’ll all get to wallow in the amazingness that is Disney at its best.
Here are numbers 45-41: (more…)
Our top 50 begins with stuff that I consider top 50, but also stuff that’s clearly not of the caliber of everything before it (or maybe after it, depending on your perspective). Once you put it in that tax bracket, it clearly falls to the back of it, is what I’m saying. (You can see what just missed out on the top 50 here.)
I’d say that most people would probably swap off two of these five songs if they were to make their lists (replacing them — generally, not in the exact location, number-wise — with, most likely, “It’s a Small World” and “One Jump Ahead.” That would be my guess). But, this being my list — I can do what I want. And I love these songs, so, I’m leaving them right where they are.
The songs on this list include two classics that don’t need any explanation, one song that nobody remembers that I love, a song that I was only introduced from another animated non-Disney film, and a song that somehow spawned a multi-billion dollar franchise that nobody can figure out how it happened.
It’s exciting. Here’s the top 50: (more…)
This is our final section before the top 50, and we start to see some real classics come up. Including one song that I’m going to apologize for in advance. Don’t worry, you’ll see when we get to it. (60-56 are here.)
My favorite thing about this portion of the list has to do with two songs in particular. One is from a film I hadn’t really seen until recently, and it’s a song that I didn’t much care for at first. But then, each time I listened to it, it grew on me, to the point where, when I started creating this list (and was just putting songs in the general area I knew they’d end up), I had it somewhere in the 70s. And then when I actually set numbers for all the songs, it ended up in the 60s. And then, when I was going to move the list from its Word document into these articles, I had it set for the previous article. And here it is, finally making its appearance. It’s definitely had the most motion of any song on this entire list.
The other song I’m excited about is so recent, and from a film that almost no one saw, that I feel like I need to be extra vocal about it because it’s so great and there’s a chance people won’t know about it and leave it ignored for years and years. So that’s really why I like this portion of the list.
That said — let’s get into it.The last half of the bottom half of the list. Here we go — 55-51. There’s some great stuff here: (more…)
Oh, this is exciting. My favorite parts of a list of 100 are always the 60-51 and 19-11 portions, because those are the ones where you see what’s not going to make the cut of the next tier. These next to portions of the list are going to be those songs that just missed making the top 50. And — you can see why, in this case. Especially when you see what’s in the top 50. (Oh, and — 65-61 can be found here.)
That said — these next ten songs are amazing. I really like them a lot. This portion specifically is great because it has two songs that happen as part of exchanges between prince and princess, as well as a song that most people probably would cast aside (along with the film it’s in) that’s actually quite good.
And we also find out here that even above average Randy Newman is better than the best of most anyone else.
Her are 60-56: (more…)
I’m very excited for this portion of the list (70-66 is here). There are two songs on here that I feel that people have no idea about (one much more so than the other).
Not to mention, also in this section is a famous song from a famous movie, plus a song from a Disney short (pretty much the only case of that on this list. There are three songs that don’t really have movies to them but are quintessentially “Disney” songs, but the one on this section of the list is one of the only songs from a short film made by Disney that made it).
I love this section, just because all lists have those entries that seem abnormally high based on how little people know about them. Also, I bet that if I gave you all five of the songs up front, you probably wouldn’t be able to guess the final order they’d end up in (in one try).
Here are 65-61: (more…)
All right. We get into the 60s now (75-71 are here). The one thing I’m excited for is finally being able to incorporate some of that good, old-fashioned Disney racism onto this list. Because it really wouldn’t be Disney without some racism. Can you guess what song it is? Ah, ah, no peeking. You’ll find out soon enough.
As for the rest of the list — we get introduced to another major film that’s yet to make an appearance (which is because all of its songs are great and are clearly going to be higher on the list than this). Coincidentally, it’s the very first song from that film, so that’s nice. And we also have another live-action song (two, but at least one of them has some animation in it. The other one is completely live-action), which actually is a song that wasn’t remembered that well until it was used in a movie twenty years after it came out. Can you guess what that is?
Don’t worry, I won’t leave you hanging. It’s coming up right now.
Here’s 70-66. I’m very excited: (more…)
All right — tier 2. Or, I guess tier 3. Since tier 1 would be 1-25. So tier 3 of the songs. 75-51. Here’s where some heavy hitters start coming up. We were relatively light on the “big” names yesterday. Today’s where they start coming off the board.
As for this list specifically — it’s pretty solid all around, this section. Two major films get introduced here (one twice, even), another film has what must be its third or fourth entry on the list and we throw in a great song from a non-animated Disney film that most people probably wouldn’t think to pull from.
It’s going to be fun. (P.S. 80-76 are here.)
Here are 75-71: (more…)
This will conclude the first quarter of the list (85-81 are here). Not too many surprises thus far. Most of the stuff are good songs, but I don’t think any of us would really think to put them too much higher than where I did. (And if you think that statement is incorrect, just wait til we get to the rest of the list.)
This section of the list will include two songs that are pretty famous. The majority of people will definitely recognize them. Then we have another great song that’s the centerpiece of its film, one of those “hero singing his dreams” songs that people who grew up with that film would probably rank higher than I am, and then one of those songs that almost never gets its rightful due because it is the one that directly precedes the classic song from the same film.
That’s all really vague and doesn’t actually say anything, but damn it, I had to write something up here. It’s not like you read these anyway.
Here’s 80-76: (more…)
This section of the list is our first introduction to recent Disney songs. (You can see the previous section here.)
I’m very outspoken about what I feel is a complete drop-off in terms of Disney songwriting. All the recent Disney films put in too much pop music in place of songs — either the character are singing preexisting hits, or a pop song plays over a montage — or, what’s even worse, they write a song for the movie, and then have the singer sing it over the action! Why would you do that? Have the famous person perform the song at the end. Have the characters perform the song during the film. Plus, all the recent Disney songs have just felt really weak to me, in general. I haven’t really been a huge fan of almost anything Disney has done over the past decade (save like, two movies).
That said — this portion of the list will feature two songs from recent Disney that I do actually like. I don’t think they’re as strong as some older Disney music (hence their rankings), but overall, I do like them. And we’ll also have our first Pixar entry on the list as well as two films that were featured in the previous portion of the list.
We continue with #85: (more…)
The previous portion of the list, #95-#91 (which you can see here), had our first instance of a song I feel people would want to go higher. This portion won’t have that. This portion consists of either songs from lesser-known Disney films, or songs that are just plain forgotten (for the most part).
So instead of being in critical mode for this section, this one is more about discovery. You get to discover (or rediscover) some great songs that most people wouldn’t immediately think of to put on their “Best of” Disney songs list.
Starting with #90: (more…)
All right — now that we’ve kicked of the list (see #100-#96 here), it’s time to start making the tougher decisions. From here on out, there are gonna be songs going that make you go, “Wow, I didn’t expect that to go so early.” Things happen when you make lists.
This portion of the list is populated mainly by “extra” songs in major films. That is — those songs in the classic movies that are not the ones that get all the spotlight. They’re fourth or fifth down on the depth chart. It’s not that they’re good, it’s just that there are so many other good ones ahead of them that it’s impossible to give them any recognition until the other ones go first.
I’ll also say — there’s one song here that I feel most people wouldn’t pull as early as I did. But hey — that’s what these lists are for. Tough decisions.
We start with #95, and the first Disney movie: (more…)
This will begin a series of Disney articles that will continue on this blog until September. We all grew up with Disney, and we all grew up with the songs. And as long as you’re still in touch with your inner child, you hold these songs and these films as near and dear as I do. So before I rank all the Disney films (I’ll explain before they go up), I’m gonna set the mood by ranking my favorite Disney songs.
The thing with Disney songs, though, is that if you don’t cap yourself, you can just keep going. There has to be a limit. And 100 felt right. At first I was worried I wouldn’t get to 100. Then the worry became, “Oh damn, which fifteen are getting left off in favor of these other fifteen?” So I felt good about capping it at 100. You’ll see as we count down — none of these are filler. They’re all legit good songs.
My other favorite thing about this list is — we all grew up with these songs. We all know them. And we all have our own personal choices. This would make for a great countdown show. Come up with a list, have people talk about it, count down and show all the songs… somebody help me get this made.
But anyway, I’m sure some people will disagree with my placement of some of the songs. Whatever. That’s why you can create your list of Disney songs. For now, let’s just enjoy the wonder that is Disney music.
Starting with #100: (more…)