Well, friends, one round of the Disney theme-park songs bracket is in the books! That can only mean one thing: we're onto the second round, and even though I'm a few hours late to when the polls got posted, I'm sharing my picks for what to send to the Sweet Sixteen.
Ready? Let's go.
(1) Yo Ho, A Pirate's Life for Me vs. (8) Canada, You're a Lifetime Journey: This is a tougher one, if only because the 8-seed here really is quite a lovely song. I like "Canada, You're a Lifetime Journey" a lot. I do! But I can't really turn down the theme to Pirates of the Caribbean. Sorry, neighbors to the North.
(5) Makin' Memories vs. (4) Bear Band Serenade: You may recall from the last newsletter that I said I am not a big fan of the Country Bear Jamboree, and if you need further proof, know that I have no qualms in easily voting for "Makin' Memories" here.
(6) Another Part of Me vs. (3) Golden Dream: "Golden Dream" is an interesting song, not least because it's honestly kind of goofy in its sincerity and earnestness. But it's also an extremely effective piece of music, skirting the line of patriotism without becoming too chest-beating. Nothing against the King of Pop, but I vote with "Golden Dream" here.
(7) In the Big Blue World vs. (2) Baroque Hoedown: I wonder if this one will be close. I'm going to vote for "Baroque Hoedown", but I can see the arguments against it -- it wasn't original to the theme parks, and it is, of course, not actually a song per se. But I'm sticking with it to the end...of this matchup, at least.
(1) Grim Grinning Ghosts vs. (8) Wishes: I gotta stick with the ghosts on this one. I like "Wishes", but some songs are too iconic to ignore.
(5) Miracles from Molecules vs. (4) Energy (You Make the World Go Round): Now, this is a difficult matchup. These are both excellent songs, both from sadly departed attractions. The Shermans vs. Bob Moline. And sadly, in this difficult choice, I must bid adieu to the Sherman brothers. Yes, "Miracles from Molecules" is a great song, but "Energy (You Make the World Go Round)" so clearly and effectively speaks to the ethos of the original EPCOT Center that I must vote for it. I must!
(11) I'm Walking Right Down the Middle of Main Street, U.S.A. vs (3) The Monorail Song: I don't get how the 11-seed won the first round. It's a silly song that's so easy to parody, without actually being very charming. I don't care if you vote for "The Monorail Song" because you're thinking of The Simpsons (even though they're not the same song). It's the clear winner here.
(7) We Go On vs. (2) One Little Spark: I'm sticking with the lower seed this time around. I bet that "One Little Spark" wins, and I get why it will, but "We Go On" also speaks to the Epcot ethos so well that I just respond to it even more than the perfectly fine "One Little Spark".
(1) In the Tiki, Tiki, Tiki Room vs. (8) Veggie Veggie Fruit Fruit: The very existence of brackets like this are nostalgic in origin. But I only have so much nostalgia for "Veggie Veggie Fruit Fruit". The Tiki birds go onto the next round.
(5) If You Had Wings vs. (4) It's Fun to be Free: "If You Had Wings" is my pick for the most obnoxious earworm in the history of Disney theme-park music. "Josh, what about 'It's A Small World'?" I haven't forgotten that song. I stand by what I said. I vote for "It's Fun to be Free" for that reason alone.
(6) The Best Time of Your Life vs. (3) Magic Journeys: I'm a sucker for the Carousel of Progress. It's a cheesy old show, yes, but I like what I like. And yes, even though I have no doubt that "Magic Journeys" will win here -- it's a solid, strangely haunting piece of music -- I gotta go with my gut and stick with "The Best Time of Your Life", even though it's nowhere near the best Carousel of Progress song.
(7) Hello Everybody vs. (2) Universe of Energy: It's "Universe of Energy" and it's not even close. Sorry to my friends at the Golden Horseshoe.
(1) It's A Small World vs. (9) El Rio del Tiempo: Another easy vote here. Yes, it's an earworm, but I will easily stick with "It's a Small World" for this one.
(5) New Horizons vs. (4) Listen to the Land: I am sure that this will be a tough matchup for some of you. And I know that "New Horizons" is a great piece of music. But I've never gotten the chance to experience the Horizons attraction, whereas Living with the Land -- even in its updated iterations -- is a low-key favorite of mine. So I am sticking with "Listen to the Land". But this matchup should be fun. For me. Not you.
(6) We Are Here to Change the World vs. (3) Fantasmic: Sorry to the King of Pop, but I'm going with the mouse with the most here. "Fantasmic" all the way.
(10) Nothing Can Stop Us Now vs. (2) There's a Great, Big, Beautiful Tomorrow: Well, Mickey, you won the last matchup, but I think the Carousel of Progress is going to stop you this time.
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