The Shaggy Dog Soundtrack
Musical Score By: Alan Menken
Songs By: Various Artists
Produced by: Walt Disney Records
Reviewed by Melissa Minners
In Disney’s The Shaggy Dog, Deputy District Attorney Dave Douglas (portrayed by Tim Allen) is currently embroiled in a case involving an animal laboratory. His family has long been placed on the back-burner to his career and this case will take even more time away from his family life. That is, until he is infected with a genetic-mutation serum. Douglas’ world is suddenly turned upside down when he begins transforming into a dog. While under this transformation, Douglas learns things about his family that he would never have known while living the hectic life of a district attorney. While all this is helpful to him, Douglas knows he can’t make any major changes in his life until he can stop transforming into the shaggy dog.
The Shaggy Dog Soundtrack is made up of music from and inspired by the movie. The original score is composed and produced by Alan Menken, who is no stranger to musical soundtracks having composed works for Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid, Little Shop of Horrors, Aladdin, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Pocahontas, and more. With the exception of the track Tibet, Menken’s composition is light and fun, perfectly reflecting the mood of the movie. Tibet is a tad more on the darker, mysterious side.
Six of the album’s seventeen tracks are songs created specifically for the CD. They can not be found in the movie itself. These songs include tracks created by C. Brown, Jaja Biggs, The Doghouse Biscuit Band, Kevin Mathurin, and George Clinton. Atomic Dog, a song from the late ‘80’s / early ‘90’s finds new life in this album. There is even a spoof of the Tag Team party song entitled Whoomp! There It Is. On this soundtrack, Kevin Mathurin leads his group of party-goers to the tune of Woof! There It Is. That song in particular is the most enjoyable of the tracks “inspired by” the film.
Realistically, The Shaggy Dog Soundtrack would have been just fine had it only included the songs composed by Alan Menkin and the title song Big Dog, by Akon, which describes the movie through the eyes of the lead character. The opinion of this reviewer is that the songs inspired by the movie were added to give the soundtrack more meat and to draw in more prospective buyers. While many Disney soundtracks are attractive to audiences of all ages, it would seem that The Shaggy Dog Soundtrack is wholly geared toward the kids. In this day and age, when children’s albums are at an all time high on the charts, I’m certain that Disney saw this as a move in the right direction. But is The Shaggy Dog Soundtrack worth the money? Maybe at a discount price, but if forced to pay full price, I’d pass this one up.