Whether it is a secret or not, every true Disney fan has a Spotify playlist dedicated to their favourite tracks from their favourite films, and its almost certain that it contains the song that everyone loves to hate “Let It Go”, the equally famous track “A Whole New World” and extremely catchy “I’ll Make A Man Out Of You”.
But, with Disney’s huge catalogue of classics, it is easy for some incredible tracks to be swept under the radar. It’s totally likely that you forgot about the list below:
“You’ll Be In My Heart” – Tarzan
Written by Phil Collins, it can be hard to believe that a film with such a beautiful and meaningful soundtrack could fall by the wayside. Its thoughtful lyrics are very typical of the classic Disney songbook, and its lullaby-esque style is sure to soothe even the weariest soul.
The song is about two people with a very close bond who will be physically separated, but always together in spirit. It’s a song of comfort that can relate to many close relationships, but in the movie is deals with mother and son – the song is used in a scene where a young Tarzan is soothed by his adoptive gorilla mother, voiced by Glenn Close.
This song actually won an Oscar for Best Original Song in 1999.
“Higitus Figitus” – The Sword in the Stone
A track this is very familiar with the Disney cartoon groove, and fits perfectly to the animated action. It’s all over the place, with silly lyrics that don’t particularly makes sense, but it is catchy and something that will be stuck in your head for hours if you aren’t careful. It displays the fun associated with childhood,
“Hellfire” – The Hunchback of Notre Dame
This is a dark song, and probably something that people forget Disney is capable of. It certainly displays that Disney is not made for just children. It displays the creepiest old man behaviour that could be animated into a Disney film, gregorian chants and posing that most models would be proud of, which results in the most melodramatic ballad to be animated… ever!
“Zero To Hero” – Hercules
Most Disney songs look to facilitate the action, and fit perfectly alongside it, however, “Zero to Hero” does exactly the opposite. The song is upbeat and sassy with inspiration clearly driven from 1980’s and 1990’s gospel, particularly because of its high choir phrases and bass grooves.
The song is about going from being a nobody to a somebody and coming to terms with that, which in the case of the film was Hercules.
“I See The Light” – Tangled
This beautiful love song has never been given the credit its due, often overshadowed by the powerhouse soundtrack that belongs to Frozen, and so pushed to the back of the Disney classics shelf. The use of an 80 piece orchestra adds a depth to the track, whilst keeping it simple and feeling very natural.
To anyone that has ever seen this projected onto the front of a castle as part of a park’s fireworks display, you’re sure to shed some tears.
“On My Way” – Brother Bear
There are so many people who don’t even know that this film exists, and another Disney film Phil Collins soundtrack deserves better than that! The 2003 track featured heavily in the advertising for the film, but never released as a single, which could explain why it tends to be forgotten about.
“Go The Distance” – Hercules
The second Hercules song to make this list, but “Go the Distance” absolutely needed to make an appearance. Deemed “one of Disney’s great anthems/motivational mantras for all aspiring athletes and deities” this track is seen as inspirational for anyone needing a push on a life journey, not just sporting champions, and has even been seen as an LGBTQ+ anthem, particularly for its lyrics about Hercules hoping to find a place where he belongs.
“Hawaiian Rollercoaster Ride” – Lilo and Stitch
A feel good track, that strays a little out of the traditional Disney classic realm. It takes the traditional Hawaiian sound and makes it mainstream without losing the cultural touches.
Anyone that has eaten at Walt Disney World’s Ohana Restaurant will know just how perfect this track is for an excited mood.
“I2I” – A Goofy Movie
Despite being released in 1995, this song sounds like a true 80’s powerhouse track. A song that definitely just wants to make you move.
A Goofy Movie is often forgotten about, but it definitely deserves some credit. It’s great to see one of the sensational six get some major screen time.
“Almost There” – The Princess and the Frog
This song has a very Christian, Gospel feel to it, and fits to the area of New Orleans perfectly, capturing that ‘deep south’ vibe with a smooth and soulful voice. The song sings about working hard to fulfil dreams, rather than wishing upon a star and waiting for something to happen, almost mimicking every other Disney princess film, but it beautiful and it works.
These are just a couple of honourable mentions that probably should be on the list,
“Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah” – Song of the South
So many controversies hit this film, and so it’s likely that there is a reason you forgot about this song, but it is the ultimate Disney classic and so you have to have it in your playlist.
“Put That Thing Back Where It Came From Or So Help Me..” – Monsters Inc.
Okay, it’s technically Pixar, and no, it was never actually released as a song, but who doesn’t love Mike Wazowski and Sulley pulling off this entire musical number? Feast your eyes and ears upon this absolute treat.
Find all of the songs mentioned here, plus a few extra surprises in the playlist below! If you think that a particular song or two should have been included then please leave a comment, you might just remind someone of a song that they haven’t heard in years!