Not in Nottingham

One of Disney’s greatest soundtrack triumphs was getting Roger Miller to write and record the soundtrack to their animated version of Robin Hood.

The film doesn’t hang entirely on a single star. I can’t imagine the list of movies these folks have made:

  • Peter Ustinov
  • Terry-Thomas
  • Phil Harris
  • Andy Devine
  • Pat Buttram
  • George Lindsey
  • Ken Curtis
  • John Fiedler
  • J. Pat O’Malley

You may not recognize the names, but hear even one of these voices and you’ll picture a dozen animated characters or see scenes from a dozen movies in the 40s, 50s, or 60s.

Miller plays the traveling bard Alan-a-Dale, providing narration, spoken or sung. The songs are all Roger through and through, but the one that’s been stuck in my head for 40 years is a classic example of his ability to share despair.

Not in Nottingham isn’t just about a few peasants in a village eight centuries ago. You’ve felt it. I’ve felt it. That brief period where we not only don’t see hope ahead, we don’t see why we’re even here, now.

If we weren't so down
We'd up and leave
We'd up and fly if we had wings for flying
Can't you see these tears we're crying
Can there be some happiness for me?
Not in Nottingham

Not in Nottingham.

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