A friend of mine on Facebook recently posted that he found himself downloading princess songs, and that he never thought he'd find himself doing something like that. As the father of two girls I have also gone through the princess phase, and his post made me realize that there are in fact a lot of really good songs associated with "princess movies". It also made me realize that I know just about all of them by heart.
So here's a list for you Dads of daughters that are just starting to love princesses. And like I commented back to my friend on Facebook, enjoy it now because by the time you realize how awesome it is, it's almost over.
[A quick note about the list: This list is of Disney princess songs. While I'm sure I'm probably missing a princess with a song not related to a Disney movie, none came to mind.]
10. "Some Day My Prince Will Come" - Snow White
I wanted to leave this one off of the list because the sentiment is pretty much the exact opposite what you want to teach your young girls. But it's a classic that just about everyone in the US can sing part of (or at least hum), so I'm just going to ignore the obvious and remember that the movie came out in 1937 when the world was a very different place.
9. "Something There" - Beauty and the Beast
Beauty and the Beast is really more like a Broadway musical than a movie, and this song is one of the best. But the best part isn't even in the soundtrack recording. It's at the very end of the song when Chip says "What's there, Mama?" My kids say it every time they hear it.
8. "Just Around The River Bend" - Pocahontas"
Colors of the Wind" is also a good song, but the best of the bunch is the song that explains who Pocahontas is. She's kind of an under-appreciated Disney princess, but this is a great song. It's also put to great use in the new World of Color show at Disneyland's California Adventure theme park.
7. "A Whole New World" - Aladdin
This princess song duet is probably sung more by Aladdin than princess Jasmine, but it's a great song from a great movie. It also is my go-to song to sing to my girls when I really want to embarrass them.
6. "I'm Wishing / One Song" - Snow White
This is the best from Snow White, if only for the incredibly odd transition when the Prince comes in at 1:30 with, "TODAY!!" It's still a really well written song, and feels like a time machine when you hear it.
5. "So This Is Love" - Cinderella
Cinderella is the first princess my oldest daughter really fell in love with. And every time I hear this song all I can think of is her watching it, glued to the television and saying afterwards, "It's so beautiful!"
4. "Almost There" - The Princess and the Frog
This song is the exact opposite of "Someday My Prince WIll Come" for all the right reasons. It's not a ballad, but like many of the others in this list it defines who the character of Tiana is. She's a young woman who is working hard to find happiness in her life. But she's going to get it through her own hard work and on her own terms, not from some prince who is going to give it to her. Princesses, welcome to the 21st century.
3. "Part of Your World" - The Little Mermaid
This song is the best modern (post Sleeping Beauty) princess song there is, and it might be the best Disney song in the modern age. It's superbly performed, superbly written (both music and lyric) and holds up to any of the classic Disney song masterpieces.
2. "A Dream Is A Wish Your Heart Makes" - Cinderella
The classic Disney princess song from the classic Disney princess movie. On other lists this song would likely be at the top, and it's not hard to understand why. It's so pervasive, that in the Disneyland Hotel the guest rooms have the opening line on the throw pillows on the beds, and the song plays in music box fashion in the nightstand to twinkle lights in the headboard.
1. "Once Upon A Dream" - Sleeping Beauty
This is in my opinion the best princess song there is. The lyric was written by Jack Lawrence based on a melody from Tschaikovsky. As the story goes, Walt Disney had scrapped the score for Sleeping Beauty that Sammy Fain and Jack Lawrence had been working on and just wanted a song based on Tschaikovsky's melody. The music is of course eternal, but the lyric is near perfect.
"But if I know you / I know what you'll do. / You'll love me at once / The way you did once / Upon A Dream."
You can't turn a phrase much better than that.