By Bobby Reed | Published December 2016
Cinephiles of a certain age tend to cite The Jungle Book (1967) as their favorite animated Disney film. For later generations, movies like Toy Story (1995) and Frozen (2013) top the list. All these films offered spellbinding animation as well as terrific music. Songs from those films—as well as animation classics such as Pinocchio (1940), Cinderella (1950) and Sleeping Beauty (1959)—are included on Jazz Loves Disney, a superb collection of recent recordings. Three of the numbers are sung in French, and each is très elegante: The incomparable Stacey Kent charms with “Bibbidi Bobbidi Boo,” Montreal native Nikki Yanofsky, bolstered by lush strings, delights with “Un Jour Mon Prince Viendra” (“Someday My Prince Will Come”) and The Hot Sardines’ lead vocalist, Elizabeth Bougerol (a native of Paris), offers a grin-inducing “I Wanna Be Like You.” Melody Gardot and Italian vocalist Raphael Gualazzi are perfectly paired for a sly duet on “The Bare Necessities,” and Gualazzi’s English-language version of “I Wanna Be Like You” melds a potent big band chart, seductive Latin rhythms and the singer’s swinging piano solo into a stellar rendition.