Beach Boy and creative genius Brian Wilson has a new project on the boil. Fresh from reimagining the songs of George Gershwin, he’s now taking on the songs of Disney films. He’s set to release an album of 11 songs from the Disney film back catalogue, which he says have been given ‘The Beach Boys treatment’.
Wilson, who is now 69, says “The Beach Boys sound and the Disney people make a fantastic collaboration. I tried to do justice to all their songs.” The collection of tracks includes numbers from the classic animated films Snow White and The Seven Dwarves, as well as more recent Disney excursions such as Toy Story 3.
Wilson has teamed up with arranger Paul von Mertens to give the songs complicated falsettos and the lush, sunny orchestration fans will associate with the Beach Boys sound.
Disney approached Wilson about making the album, which includes such song reworkings as an instrumental medley of Snow White‘s ‘Heigh-Ho’ and ‘Whistle While You Work’, and a drastic Bo Diddley-esque revamp of Elton John and Tim Rice’s ‘I Just Can’t Wait to Be King’ from The Lion King.
Wilson declares the project was as much about giving the songs the Beach Boys treatment as recognising the songwriters behind the classics, saying “(We wanted to do) a good job bringing Disney people to the fore, so people could appreciate them.”