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The Stories Behind Your Favourite Disney Songs

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The Stories Behind Your Favourite Disney Songs

They’re memorable, sometimes funny, but incredibly catchy.

Chances are your favourite moment from a Disney movie belongs in a song, but there’s more to your favourite Disney songs than just a catchy tune.

The most successful Disney songs have won Academy Awards, are created and performed by famous artists and have topped music charts around the world. Here are the stories behind the very best Disney songs:


The Walt Disney Company collected their very first musical Oscar way back in 1939 for “Over the Rainbow” from the masterpiece The Wizard of Oz. The awards continued with the animation company winning the Oscar category a total of thirteen times since its inception, and the Grammy Award for Best Song Written for Visual Media eight times since 1988.

Here’s a list of all the award-winning Disney songs:

Academy Award for Best Original Song

• “Let It Go” – Frozen, 2013
• “Man or Muppet” – The Muppets, 2011
• “We Belong Together” – Toy Story 3, 2010
• “If I Didn’t Have You” – Monsters, Inc., 2001
• “You’ll Be In My Heart” – Tarzan, 1999
• “Colors of the Wind” – Pocahontas, 1995
• “Can You Feel The Love Tonight” – The Lion King, 1994
• “A Whole New World” – Aladdin, 1992
• “Beauty And The Beast” – Beauty And The Beast, 1991
• “Under The Sea” – The Little Mermaid, 1989
• “Chim Chim Cher-ee” – Mary Poppins, 1964
• “When You Wish Upon A Star” – Pinocchio, 1940
• “Over The Rainbow” – The Wizard Of Oz, 1939

Grammy Award for Best Song Written for Visual Media

• “I See The Light” – Tangled, 2012
• “Down To Earth” – WALL-E, 2009
• “Our Town” – Cars, 2007
• “If I Didn’t Have You” – Monsters, Inc., 2001
• “Colors of the Wind” – Pocahontas, 1995
• “A Whole New World” – Aladdin, 1992
• “Beauty and the Beast” – Beauty and the Beast, 1991
• “Under The Sea” – The Little Mermaid, 1989


Disney songs and productions don’t just have famous names on their cast list. Elton John lent his talent to The Lion King’s soundtrack, writing three of its most celebrated songs; “Circle of Life,” “I Just Can’t Wait to be King” and “Can You Feel the Love Tonight.”

Legendary Hollywood composer Hans Zimmer was responsible for The Lion King score, as well as Cool Runnings, Muppet Treasure Island, King Arthur, The Lone Ranger and all four of the Pirates of the Caribbean movies.

Some other frequent Disney composers include Alan Menken, who composed the music for twelve well-known Disney pictures, including The Little Mermaid, Aladdin and Tangled. Randy Newman is responsible for the music from all three Toy Story movies, James and the Giant Peach, A Bug’s Life, Cars, The Princess and the Frog, as well as Monsters Inc. and Monsters University.


Scooping movie awards is one thing, but some of our favourite Disney songs have managed to top the music charts around the world.

Performed by Indina Menzel, “Let It Go” from the 2013 film Frozen peaked at number five on the US Billboard Hot 100. The last time a song from an animated Disney movie made the top ten on the chart was nearly twenty years ago – the 1995 song “Colors of the Wind” from Pocahontas, which peaked at number four.

“Can You Feel the Love Tonight” hit number 4 on the US Billboard Hot 100 in 1994 and “Beauty and the Beast” reached number 9 in 1991.

The only Disney animated song to top the US Billboard Hot 100 was “A Whole New World” from Aladdin, which reached #1 in 1992.

The Walt Disney Company has been responsible for award winning, chart-topping and overwhelmingly celebrated songs for nearly 100 years. So which song is your favourite? Let us know in the comments below.

994043 212597938921829 1769137151 nDon’t forget to check out the Landmark Disney Favourites collection to see all the best Disney movies online at Presto.




Jolene enjoys writing, sharing and connecting with other like-minded women online – it also gives her the perfect excuse to ignore Mount-Washmore until it threatens to bury her family in an avalanche of Skylander T-shirts and Frozen Pyjama pants. (No one ever knows where the matching top is!) Likes: Reading, cooking, sketching, dancing (preferably with a Sav Blanc in one hand), social media, and sitting down on a toilet seat that one of her children hasn’t dripped, splashed or sprayed on. Dislikes: Writing pretentious crap about herself in online bio’s and refereeing arguments amongst her offspring.

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