|By Chris Lyndon|
It's time to continue our series of articles here on Disney Avenue celebrating the sounds of Disneyland. Join us today for our fifth stop on this nostalgic audio tour of Disneyland's yesteryear as we line up along the curb of Main Street USA for the splendiferous spectacle of Disneyland on Parade...
At contributing writer Chris Lyndon's website called DisneyChris.com you will find a collection of nearly 1500 audio tracks taking you on a magical musical visit through the Happiest Place on Earth. We will be highlighting each of the 26 chapters included in this "Magical Audio Tour" in the weeks and months ahead. Each chapter of this Disneyland Magical Audio Tour highlights one aspect or specific area of the park. Today we resume the tour at Chapter 5 by taking a look at many fondly remembered Disneyland parades of years past. 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 located at the top of the page prior to playing the tracks below if you are on a desktop computer.)
Main Street March - The Disneyland Band
Heard here is the original Disneyland Band conducted by Vessy Walker. This march was composed especially for Main Street USA back in the 1950's. It was first heard on the 1954 broadcast of the Disneyland TV series as Walt showed a scale model of Main Street. The Band would often play it live in the park as well during the earlier years...
You can now find this track and listen to it whenever the mood strikes by scrolling through the Disney Avenue Music Player's playlist located at the top of the page, just below the Disney Avenue banner, and selecting track number 344.
Disneyland Grand Opening Parade - National Emblem March
Disneyland's very first parade was held on opening day, July 17th 1955. At the head of the procession was the United States Marine Corp Band, who played the familiar "National Emblem March" as they made their way down Main Street. They were then followed by many costumed representatives from each of the park's four lands...
This is track number 345 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
The Firehouse 5 Plus 2 - Main Street Parade
One of the first musical groups to perform in a Disneyland parade, which in the beginning only had live music, was a group of Dixielanders known as the Firehouse 5 Plus 2. This talented troupe was comprised of members from Walt Disney's animation staff, and were favorite parade guest stars from opening day, well into the 1970's...
This is track number 346 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
The Disneyland Circus Calliope
A genuine 1907, steam-powered, 20 whistle circus calliope, was personally purchased by Walt Disney for use in Disneyland, and was fully restored for its first appearance in the 1955 Mickey Mouse Club Circus Parade. It would also appear in the 1960 feature film, "Toby Tyler," and is often used for parades and special events to this day...
This is track number 347 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
Zorro Days Parade
Zorro was a highly rated weekly TV show produced by the Disney Studio for prime-time television in the 1950's. During the run of this popular program, the actual stars of the show, including the masked avenger himself, portrayed by Guy Williams, made special guest appearances in Disneyland which always included a parade down Main Street...
This is track number 348 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
Mickey at the Movies Parade - Disneyland Parade Anthem
Disneyland's first regularly scheduled daily parade was known as the "Mickey at the Movie's Parade," which included a colorful cavalcade of Disney characters from Walt Disney's classic films. For the first time, the parade was led off by The Big Bass Drum, which would become a Disneyland parade tradition in the years to follow...
This is track number 349 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
Small World Opening Day Parade
To usher in the premiere of It's a Small World in Disneyland, a gala parade was held in 1966. It included echoes of parades past by yet again inviting local civic organizations to share the customs of their native lands through costume dance and procession. The event culminated in a special opening day ceremony at the Small World waterways...
This is track number 350 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
The Disneyland Band - Main Street Marching Medley
The Disneyland Band has been marching all over Disneyland since the very day it first opened in 1955, and the electric thrill of seeing them promenade down Main Street USA has most certainly not diminished over time. Often, Mickey Mouse himself will lead the procession as excited on-lookers have to fight not to crack a wide-eyed grin...
This is track number 351 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
The familiar theme from the Main Street Electrical Parade was originally produced for the 1966 album, "The In Sound From Way Out!" created by revolutionary synthesizer composers Jean-Jacques Perrey and Gershon Kingsley. This song is now recognized as a true Disney classic, and many talented artist have recorded fantastic cover versions over the years...
Editor's Note: This is my current favorite track in the Disney Avenue Music Player. The version that starts at the 4:33 mark gets my toes tapping every time I hear it. I love that beat!!
- Keith Mahne
This is track number 352 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
The Disneyland Parade Song
The memorable theme song originally featured in the Mickey Mouse 50th birthday parade truly did epitomize the spirit of a Disneyland parade. With slightly altered lyrics, it would outlive the run of the birthday parade. Over time it has become a sort-of theme song, often used to represent Disneyland parades for special promotions...
This is track number 353 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
Flights of Fantasy Parade
When Disneyland's all-new Fantasyland premiered in 1983, a special parade was held to commemorate the grand opening event. The procession was filled with colorful giant balloons, dozens of beloved Disney characters, and whimsical floats representing scenes straight out of the classic animated films represented in the new Fantasyland...
This is track number 354 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
American Gazette Parade
The American Gazette Parade was a celebration of the ever-evolving musical genres and popular dance styles that spanned the decades of the 20th century. Setting this parade apart from all others produced during this time, the music was performed entirely live, calling on the talents of Disneyland's many in-house musical groups...
This is track number 355 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
Disneyland's 30th Anniversary Parade
1985 marked the 30th anniversary year of Disneyland. In commemoration, a year-long celebration was held throughout the entire park. Every thirtieth guest was awarded a special prize from the Gift-Giver Extraordinaire located at the main entrance turnstile, and highlighting the entire event was a colorful parade down Main Street USA...
This is track number 356 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
Totally Minnie Parade
Minnie was always more than happy to be Mickey's romantic sidekick, but in 1986 it was finally her turn to be in the spotlight. It was declared the "Year of Minnie," and a contemporary pop music album entitled, "Totally Minnie," was released on Disneyland Records.A special Minnie parade was also featured at Disneyland all year long...
This is track number 357 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
The Disneyland State Fair - Come to the Fair Parade
In 1987, a special park wide promotional event took place called the Disneyland State Fair. Throughout the park, venues were overlaid with traditional state fair exhibits and themed entertainment. A highlight was the State Fair Parade, which included dancing farm crops, Minnie's blue ribbon pies and barnyard animals...
This is track number 358 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
Snow White's Golden Anniversary Celebration Parade
In 1987, the first ever full-length animated feature, Walt Disney's "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs", celebrated its 50th anniversary. During the year, a special cavalcade was presented featuring all of the beloved characters and memorable music from the classic film. Goofy would introduce the procession with a royal proclamation...
This is track number 359 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
Blast to the Past Parade
In 1988 Disneyland joined the " Back to the Future" craze with a special event held park-wide known as the Blast to the Past. A central element of this celebration of 1950's music and pop culture was a lively parade featuring a giant jukebox, drag racers and a far-out finale with Martian monsters and Mickey blasting off in a Rocket Ship...
This is track number 360 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
Mickey's 60th Birthday Parade
In 1988, Mickey celebrated his 60th Birthday, and again, an elaborate procession was presented daily up and down Main Street, honoring the lovable mouse who started it all. The parade featured zany costumes and silly mice from around the world, traveling by train, boat, auto and airplane, to join the Big Cheese in his Disneyland celebration...
This is track number 361 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
Mickey's 60th Birthday Bash
During Mickey's 60th Birthday event, between showings of the afternoon parade, a special birthday party was staged along Main Street USA twice per day. A large birthday cake topped by Mickey Mouse and filled with Mouseketeer costumed dancers would stop at several points along the parade route for a live 15 minute musical show...
This is track number 362 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
Party Gras Parade
Disneyland's 35th anniversary was celebrated with a lavish parade recreating the fun and excitement of a South American carnival, where guests were encouraged to come out into the streets and dance along to the Latin beat. Another memorable feature were the towering floats that carried inflated Disney characters measuring over 40 feet high...
This is track number 363 in the Disney Avenue Music Player.
I hope you enjoyed Chapter 5 of our Disneyland Magical Audio Tour featuring the sounds of Disneyland on Parade. Be sure to stay tuned for Chapter 6 coming soon which will feature the sounds of Adventureland. See you then!
— Chris Lyndon, DisneyChris.com
You can find other Disneyland Magical Audio Tour Chapters below:
Chapter 1: Welcome to Disneyland
Chapter 2: Town Square
Chapter 3: Main Street USA
Chapter 4: Central Plaza
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.