Many Disney tunes have a dark side

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Music has always been the true key to the Magic Kingdom. Around a century ago, Walt Disney declared his musical ethos to his team: “We should set a new pattern, a new way to use music – weave it into the story so that somebody doesn’t just burst into song.” Disney music feels woven into our life stories, too; its vast repertoire seeps into our consciousness from infancy; it casts a spell through our adulthood. It is simultaneously in-the-moment and timeless.

As Disney marks its centenary, it’s impossible to contain its musical legacy within a single volume or performance; the ongoing Disney 100 live tour features numerous classics – including The Jungle Book, The Lion King and Moana – but the songbook continually evolves, studded with emotional hooks. At five, I was mesmerised by the music and Technicolor visuals of Dumbo: especially the hallucinatory Pink Elephants on Parade, and the heart-rending Baby Mine (where Dumbo’s shackled mother cradles her son through prison bars); decades later, it still makes me sob. When a Disney song hits, it never quite leaves you.



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Chuck comes from a lineage of journalism. He has written for some of the webs most popular news sites. He enjoys spending time outdoors, bull riding, and collecting old vinyl records. Roll Tide!