Saturday, September 6, 2014

A Guide to Disneyland Paris Music on CD

On first glance there has been a wealth of music releases at Disneyland Paris since 1992. Over the years, guests could purchase one of over a dozen albums and about 20 CD singles, all in all more than one release per year on average. 

Things get quite a bit thinner, however, when you strip away all the show and parade music. In fact, very little has been released of the park's extensive attraction and area music library – which makes up the bulk of similar releases from the American parks. The first album to include any music of the sort was 1999's Une Journée à Disneyland Paris, and it would remain the only time any new music tracks of the kind were released until this day. Subsequent albums would use the same but constantly fewer cues, culminating in the 20th anniversary release inaccurately titled "The Best of Disneyland Paris" which included a full two (2) tracks of attraction music and none from shops, restaurants or other areas. 

Even looking at the high water mark of Une Journée à Disneyland Paris, however, the selection is baffling. No cues from the iconic background music loop of Main Street, U.S.A., nothing from the queue line of Big Thunder Mountain, no on-board soundtrack of Space Mountain. Instead… well, read for yourselves. I decided to make this list to keep track of the non-entertainment music that has been released over the years, and to possibly help owners of some of the older albums to figure out just where the vaguely-labeled and often obscure pieces actually play (or used to play) in the park. 

Numbers after each title indicate the CD release, listed below.

Main Street, U.S.A.

Paddlin’ Madeline Home (2, 4)
This band organ tune helps create a fairground atmosphere at Boardwalk Candy Palace, Disney & Co. and Plaza West boutiques on Main Street, U.S.A.

Grim Grinning Ghosts (2, 3, 4)
A piano and cello duet from the original 1992 background music loop of Walt’s – An American Restaurant. The chamber music arrangements of Disney songs were replaced in the mid-1990s by the more eclectic Disney tune selection currently played.


Phantom Manor Medley (2, 3, 4, 5, 6)
A rather random mix of various Phantom Manor cues which doesn't follow the chronology of the ride (nor, at times, its own rhythm). Here's a breakdown of the music used, in order:
  • Poltergeist Mirrors background music (excerpt)
  • Graveyard Garden organ (alternate recording, excerpt)
  • Corridor of Doors background music with unused chorus part and Music Room piano
  • Phantom Canyon background music and chorus
  • Phantom Canyon saloon piano (excerpt)
  • Phantom Canyon saloon piano and chorus with Skeleton Catacombs "skull-o-phone" percussion (excerpt)
  • Skeleton Catacombs background music with Phantom Canyon chorus
  • Graveyard Garden organ (alternate recording, excerpt)

Big Country Theme (2, 3, 4)
A grand orchestral piece from the Thunder Mesa background music loop; originally from the film score to "The Big Country."

Yellow Rose of Texas (2, 3, 4, 5, 6)
Falsely attributed to Big Thunder Mountain on at least one release, this honky-tonk piano arrangement is part of the Lucky Nugget Saloon and Last Chance Cafe background music and was custom-recorded for the park.


Yo Ho (A Pirates’ Life for Me) (2, 4, 5, 6, 7)
The classic music and vocals of the Burning City scene in Pirates of the Caribbean.

Tep Menoram Dance (2)
This ethnic track attributed to Adventureland had me stumped for the longest time. As it turns out, it comes from the original 1992 background music loop of the Explorers Club Restaurant (and should actually be spelled Tep Monorom Dance). By the time of the album's release, the restaurant had long become Colonel Hathi’s Pizza Outpost, with a completely new music loop.

Blow the Man Down (2, 4)
A nautical tune from the Pirate Cove area music loop, originally recorded for the album "The Wind in the Rigging."


Small World Medley / It's A Small World (1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 7)
A suite of the attraction music, mixing the background music of the entrance and exit tunnels, the main room as well as the grand finale with vocals in French, Italian, Spanish, German, British English and American English.

Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah (2)
Although grouped in with the Main Street music on Une Journée à Disneyland Paris, this track actually plays at L'Auberge de Cendrillon in Fantasyland (and survived a change of the restaurant's background music in the mid-1990s).

Joyne Hands (2)
A Renaissance-era piece playing in the castle boutique Merlin l’Enchanteur, originally from the album "Heavenly Noyse."


Space Mountain (2)
Excerpts from Steve Bramson's queue line music composed for Space Mountain – De la Terre à la Lune. It played along with selections from The Rocketeer, Krull and other motion picture soundtracks, setting the mood for the adventure to come, until it was replaced by com chat when the attraction became Space Mountain – Mission 2.

The CD releases:
  1. it's a small world! (CD Single, Disneyland Paris, 1998)
  2. Une Journée à Disneyland Paris (Album, Disneyland Paris, 1999)
  3. Frontierland en Musique (Album, Disneyland Paris, 1999)
  4. Disneyland Resort Paris en Musique (Album, Disneyland Paris, 2005)
  5. 15 Ans de Magie en Musique (Album, Disneyland Paris, 2007)
  6. The Best of Disneyland Resort Paris (Album, Walt Disney Records/EMI, 2008)
  7. The Best of Disneyland Paris (Album, Disneyland Paris, 2012)

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