Tracey Constantly Gave Dad Proud Moments

So my daughter is watching Three Amigos!, and says:

“Daddy, I think the people who made this film made Toy Story as well, because the music is kind of the same.”

“Poor little tyke,” I think.  “Elmer Bernstein wrote the score for Three Amigos!, and everyone knows that Randy Newman wrote the score for Toy Story.”  Then I notice that the Amigos are sitting around the campfire, singing Blue Shadows on the Trail … written by Randy Newman.

“It sounds like You’ve Got a Friend In Me,” says my daughter.  She is six.

You listening, Rolling Stone magazine?  Your music critics are crap.


10 thoughts on “Tracey Constantly Gave Dad Proud Moments

  1. And little wonder she picked up on it. I think the Toy Story sound track is a cracker – particularly for “When Somebody Loves You”, and … what’s it called … the one Buzz sings when he has his crisis of identity and jumps off the top of the stairs and his arm comes off … “I will go sailin’ no more” … A lot to learn from Toy Story …

    • A lot of Randy Newman song buffs pick on him for his film work – “family-friendly”, “middle of the road” etc. – but I’m with you, Jane. It takes a real pro to write adult songs for characters made of felt and plastic in a film aimed at children.

      It says something for Pixar and John Lasseter that the songs made it through, too.

      • My boss (a Pixar fanatic) told me once that Disney were pushing the songs because “we always have songs” and that Lasseter and Pixar fought tooth-and-nail against them. They had to give in because that was when Disney held the pursestrings rather than the other way around.

        “I Will Go Sailing” is lovely, and really turns Buzz into a funny and moving metaphor for fatherhood – you start out life thinking that when you grow up you’ll be an astronaut, but one day you find yourself entertaining small children as your body falls apart.

        • Ha! “We always have songs” – I had no idea, because I’ve always thought how unlike Menken/Ashman or Elton John/Tim Rice those songs are.

          They’re closer to the songs in ‘Dumbo’ or ‘Bambi’ – commentary rather than numbers performed by characters.

          Pixar must have come around, though, ‘cos look at ‘Wall-E’.

  2. Yeah, well … I love this idea that somehow you are crap if your work appeals to a lot of people? Doesn’t that mean you’ve really struck a chord … hit at exactly what moves most people?

    By the way, I’ve been idly googling the meaning of the lyrics of American Pie and it’s been interesting how various “experts” talk about different interpretations. What I think they’ve all missed is that McLean probably meant to hit on multiple interpretations – ie the Buddy Holly/history of rock and roll at the same time as social commentary. Played too much, but masterful, don’t you think? Oh, guess what I’m attempting to play on the guitar at the moment …

    • When I was seventeen, I thought the sun rose and set with ‘American Pie’ and ‘Vincent’. Especially ‘Vincent’. Nowadays, I still admire them as songs, but it’s intriguing to contrast them with the jerk McLean turned out to be. He’s the original conservative leftie, I think.

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