|By Chris Lyndon|
It's time to continue our new series of articles here on Disney Avenue celebrating the sounds of Disneyland. At contributing writer Chris Lyndon's website called DisneyChris.com you will find a collection of nearly 1300 audio tracks taking you on a magical musical visit through the Happiest Place on Earth. We will be highlighting each of the 25 chapters included in this "Magical Audio Tour" in the weeks and months ahead. Join us today for our second stop on this nostalgic audio tour of Disneyland's yesteryear as we enter the Park in turn of the twentieth century, Town Square...
Each chapter of this Disneyland Magical Audio Tour highlights one aspect or specific area of the park. The second chapter is a look at the Town Square area of Disneyland. Found below are a collection of some of the best tracks you will find on this chapter. To view the entire chapter be sure to visit DisneyChris.com.
(For your listening pleasure, please remember to pause the Disney Avenue Music Player at the top left-hand side of the page prior to playing the tracks below if you are on a desktop computer.)
Walt Disney Welcomes You to Town Square
As we enter the Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney welcomes us to Town Square USA. Just inside Disneyland's main entrance is a colorful replica of an early 20th century small American town. At the base of the flagpole in the center of this square, a bronze plaque contains the Disneyland dedication, delivered by Walt Disney on July 17th 1955.
You can now find this track and listen to it whenever the mood strikes by clicking on the Disney Avenue Music Player's playlist button located at the top, right-hand side of the page and scrolling to track number 214. The music player is only accessible from a desktop computer.
Town Square Morning Announcements
On those mornings when Main Street is open early to guests, they are invited to leisurely wander through Town Square and experience its shops, exhibits and attractions,as they anxiously await for the remainder of Disneyland to open, including round trips on the Disneyland Railroad and the first showing of Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln.
This is track number 215 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
The Trolley Song
At one time, Disneyland had several horse-powered modes of transportation. There were surreys and a horse-drawn fire wagon on Main Street, and Frontierland had stagecoaches and Conestoga wagons. Today the only remaining attraction featuring proud steeds is the Horse Drawn Street Cars, a Disneyland favorite for over 60 years.
This is track number 216 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
Guided Tour Garden
The Guided Tour Garden is located at the very entrance to Disneyland on the west side of Town Square. This shady area is where guests gather for informative guided tours through the park, which can be purchased at the main gate in addition to regular admission. Special tours also offer access to areas generally not open to the public.
This is track number 217 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
City Hall Area Music
Popular American song styles from the 1900's have traditionally set the mood throughout Town Square and Main Street USA. Recordings by the Paragon Ragtime Orchestra, an ensemble devoted to preserving the orchestral stylings of the past, long provided much of the appropriate musical backdrop for this late Victorian setting.
This is track number 218 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
The Hook n' Ladder Band
A long standing Disneyland tradition is a performance by a firehouse Dixieland band. The original ensemble, known as the Firehouse Five Plus Two, was comprised of members of the Walt Disney studio animation staff. Today this tradition continues with the Hook n' Ladder Band, who often perform in front of the Disneyland fire station.
This is track number 219 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
The Dapper Dans Town Square Performance
The world-famous Dapper Dans quartet often perform in Town Square to welcome Disneyland guests as they enter the park. Their four-part harmonic repertoire includes barbershop ballads as well as many memorable tunes from the world of Disney. They often accompany themselves with their hand-held antique Deagan Organ chimes.
This is track number 220 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
Main Street Emporium Area Music
Positioned at the corner of Main Street and Town Square is the largest store in all of Disneyland. Here at the Emporium guests can find almost any kind of Disney themed memento imaginable. Providing period appropriate musical atmosphere are selected orchestral arrangements of songs by Scott Joplin and other ragtime era composers.
This is track number 221 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
Town Square Area Music - The Jack Wagner Collection
When Jack Wagner was deemed official park announcer, he volunteered to find time period appropriate area music for Town Square and Main Street, including syncopated Ragtime standards, barbershop ballads, patriotic marches, wistful waltzes, Vaudeville showtunes, and all other popular American musical styles from the early 20th century.
This is track number 222 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
The Original Disneyland Band Town Square Concert
A band concert in the park was a common civic diversion of small town American life at the beginning of the twentieth century. The Disneyland Band hearkened back to that time with their daily concerts in Town Square. The musical program included marches, popular songs of the early twentieth century and a collection of Disney favorites.
This is track number 223 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
The Straw Hat Strutters
Another popular Dixieland troupe which regularly performs in Town Square is known as the Straw Hat Strutters. This band was likely formed in homage to an earlier in park group, known as the Strawhatters, who began performing in the park in the 1950's at their own bandstand located on the banks of the Rivers of America in Frontierland.
This is track number 224 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
Maxwell House Coffee House
Once in a tiny Town Square corner café, hot Maxwell House java was percolated fresh every morning, long before Starbucks or even Hills Bros.were Disneyland's official coffee sponsors. Later, when the menu expanded to include hot breakfast,the venue was extended to an adjacent patio area, becoming known as the Hills Bros. Coffee Garden.
This is track number 225 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
Saxophone Quartet - Town Square Performance
Disneyland's famous Sax quartet has often performed in Town Square. Originally they were known as the Keystone Cops due to their police style uniforms. Nowadays they are more commonly seen in fireman's costumes, but in the 90's they donned bright zoot suits to promote the live Dick Tracy show, and cartoon garb to promote Mickey's Toontown.
This is track number 226 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
Mickey Mouse Club Headquarters
Another early attraction at the Opera House was tied into the Mickey Mouse Club, which had gone into national syndication by the mid 1960's following its original three year run from 1955-1958. In this "official" headquarters, young guests could become an honorary Mouseketeer while watching classic cartoons in a newly built main theater.
This is track number 227 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
The Disneyland Story Lobby Area Music
To honor Disneyland's 50th anniversary, Mr. Lincoln went on temporary hiatus for a special Opera House exhibit. Since then, the lobby area outside the main theater has continued to feature Disneyland memorabilia including rare concept art and elaborate models including a detailed scale model of Disneyland as it appeared on opening day.
This is track number 228 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
The First 50 Magical Years - Musical Score
The memorable score from "Disneyland, The First 50 Magical Years" was written and arranged by legendary film composer John Debney. His upbeat and whimsical musical interludes perfectly captured the magical spirit of the Happiest Place on Earth while imparting a nod to the past with several mid twentieth century references.
This is track number 229 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
Disneyana Gifts - Disneyana Theme Song
Disneyana was originally located on Main Street, but closed in 2013 to make way for an expansion of the Market House when Starbucks coffee moved in as the new sponsor. Since then, the Disneyana shop was combined with the Disney Gallery in Town Square, still offering exclusive art and decorative pieces for the serious Disney collector.
This is track number 230 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
Disneyland Railroad - Ticket Announcements
Before the days of the unlimited passport, passage on the Disneyland Railroad required a 'D' coupon. A conductor was on hand to punch the redeemed tickets, just as was done in traditional railroading days. Those who did not have a ticket book could purchase an individual coupon directly from the conductor at the entrance to the Main Street Station.
This is track number 231 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
Main Street Station Orchestrion Music
Inside the Main Street train station lobby are early 20th century relics from the days when American railroad travel was in its prime. Among these authentic antiques is a mechanical music machine, known as an orchestrion. When a coin is inserted, music is automatically generated using pulls and levers activated by a perforated scroll.
This is track number 232 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
The Disneyland Railroad - Grand Circle "Musical" Tour
An on board narrator points out all the sights along the grand circle tour. Passengers first travel through the Adventureland jungles followed by an excursion along the banks of Frontierland's Rivers of America. They then journey past the colorful It's a Small World topiary gardens, then alongside the Autopia highways in Tomorrowland.
This is track number 233 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
Flag Retreat Ceremony
A Disneyland tradition since 1955 is the official flag lowering ceremony held every evening, just before sundown, at the base of the Town Square flag pole. The moving yet understated ceremony serves as a reminder to guests that Walt Disney himself wanted Disneyland to honor the ideals, the dreams and hard facts that have created America.
This is track number 234 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
I hope everyone enjoyed Chapter 2 of our Disneyland Magical Audio Tour featuring the vintage sounds of Disneyland's Town Square. Be sure to stay tuned for Chapter 3 coming soon which will feature the nostalgic tunes of Disneyland's Main Street USA. See you soon!
— Chris Lyndon, DisneyChris.com
You can find other Disneyland Magical Audio Tour Chapters below:
Chapter 1: Welcome to Disneyland
Chris Lyndon grew up in Southern California, near Disneyland. He formed a lifelong fascination with all things Disney from a very early age, especially Disney music, and has studied the history of the Walt Disney organization for decades. His very first summer job was at Disneyland at age 16, and he also worked at the Florida parks during his college years, as part of the Walt Disney World College Internship Program. His lifelong passion for Disney music has evolved into his website, DisneyChris.com. All manner of Disney music can be enjoyed there including the Disney Song of the Day, but the main focus is audio from the original Disneyland theme park in a collection he calls the "Disneyland Magical Audio Tour," with over 1200 audio tracks, full color imagery and historical information for every track posted. Chris also provided archival Disneyland audio for the September 2015 PBS Walt Disney American Experience documentary. In 2014 he joined the Sideshow Sound Theatre podcast group as a co-host on the MouseMusic podcast, and in December 2015 he began his own weekly podcast covering all things Disney, called Jiminy Crickets! He is now also co-host of Magical Day Radio program, where he interviews notable people within the Disney community.
You can find all of Chris's articles here.
You can find all of Chris's articles here.