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Big Al is an overweight gray bear who performs in the Disney theme park attraction Country Bear Jamboree. He also appears in the 2002 feature film based on the attraction.

Background[]

Biography[]

From 1972's Country Bear Jamboree record album:

Big Albert says, "I was born in a cave near the Princess Theater in Pocatello, Idaho". There was music in his blood, and he's been playing his guitar since he was a child. It's become more difficult—Big Al has grown, and the guitar hasn't. He loves to sit in front of his cave and sing. He was the first to practice ecology; he didn't litter his cave with tin cans and paper cartons—he ate ‘em. He was resident bard and balladeer in the swamp before Walt Disney World was built (and three badgers and an alligator have expressed great joy that he is now singing for people). This is Big Albert's 10th farewell appearance.

From the Country Bear Musical Jamboree[1]:

And of course, what would the Country Bears be without Big Al? There’s music in this bear’s blood, and he’s been playing the guitar since he was a child. He was even the resident bard and balladeer in the swamp before Disney World was built. Coming off his 25th Farewell Tour in cities like Paris (Texas), Hollywood (Florida) and London (Ohio), Big Al is a true legend.  

Development History[]

Big Al was designed by animator Marc Davis and modeled after Disney imagineer Al Bertino.

Appearances[]

Big Al's[]

Big Al's is an outdoor gift-shop found in the Frontierland of the Magic Kingdom. Big Al appears on the shop's sign as the spokesperson for the shop which predominately sells plushies and Davy Crockett-style coonskin caps. The shop is themed to having been Al's cabin which he later turned into a shop to bank in on the success of the Country Bears.

Big Al's Icy Igloo[]

During Tokyo Disneyland's 1992 "Disney's World Fair" event, Big Al hosted the temporary "Big Al's Icy Igloo" snack stand, which featured an oversized inflatable of the character.

The Country Bear Jamboree[]

Big Al appears during the ending of the show, singing "Blood on the Saddle" and threatening the momentum of the show in the process. The other bears start bringing their singing together to counter Al's off-key crooning and eventually drive him off stage.

Country Bear Vacation Hoedown[]

In Country Bear Vacation Hoedown, Big Al sings "I Got Lost On My Way To Your Heart" while wearing camping gear and a miner's helmet.

Country Bear Christmas Special[]

In the American Country Bear Christmas Special, Big Al dresses up as Baby New Year and sings "Another New Year", while in the Tokyo Disneyland version, he sings "Auld Lang Syne" in a purple suit while lamenting his wife leaving him and taking his beloved hound dog with her. In these versions of the show, the other bears don't seem to have much of a problem with him performing, since they actually let him take part in the finale and sing.

Country Bear Musical Jamboree[]

In the Country Bear Musical Jamboree, Big Al sing "Remember Me", He wearing a cowboy hat and a red and yellow fern leaves vest.

Minor appearances and references[]

Goofy's Sky School[]

In the queue of Goofy's Sky School at Disney California Adventure, a letter from Big Al and the "Bear Brothers Backwoods Brewery" can be found on a bulletin board. Responding to a letter from Goofy asking if they can make some cheap fuel out of moonshine, Al has offered him a few batches while warning him that it hasn't been tested for machines and can pack a wallop.

Hot Pop-Corn[]

A miniature figure of Big Al turns a popcorn crank in Tokyo Disneyland.

Main Street Cinema[]

Outside of the Main Street Cinema is a posting from the Disneyland Casting Agency. This advert reads as, "Openings for Talented Bears: Sought for Country Western Musical. Must play an instrument. Singing experience preferred. Trainers contact Big Al at C.B. Playhouse".

Grizzly Peak[]

A Big Al statue with Magic Band+ interactivity was added to a Disney Vacation Club kiosk in Disney California Adventure in 2024, with dialog snippets ranging from singing a song about himself to talking about how much he likes going on vacation.

Live-Appearances[]

He also appears in the parks as a walk-around character along with fellow Country Bears Wendell, Shaker, and Liver Lips.

Other appearances[]

Film[]

The Country Bears[]

Bears

Big Al is the groundskeeper of Country Bear Hall and a technician for the band, developing the world-famous "Country Bears-Big Al Light Show", though in the years afterward has taken pride in the Hall's lawn. While Henry and Beary Barrington go off on a journey to reunite the band, Al manages to keep stalling Reed Thimple, who is growing frustrated and impatient with his plans to tear down the hall. In the film's ending, Al lets everybody inside the theater from as he opens the doors to massive crowds, who he had parked in the back to avoid messing up his grass.

Printed materials[]

Big Al Moves In[]

A storybook released to coincide with the opening of Walt Disney World in 1971, Big Al Moves In tells of how Al came to live and perform with the Country Bears. When performing all the way through autumn and missing an opportunity to find a place to hibernate, Big Al travels south and performs to earn money for food, but ends up frightening the locals and jumps aboard a truck. Riding the truck, he ends up at Walt Disney World, where nobody bats an eye at him for being a talking bear. He makes his way to Grizzly Hall in Frontierland and meets the other Country Bears, who offer him a job performing with them and a place to stay.

Mickey and Donald in Frontierland[]

In "Mickey and Donald in Frontierland", a story produced for the opening of Magic Kingdom, Big Al is one of three bears that plays hooky from the show to have a picnic on the shores of the Rivers of America, leading Mickey, Donald, and Henry to go get them back before showtime.

Video games[]

Disney Infinity[]

Big Al is represented as a non-playable townsperson costume in this game series.

Epic Mickey[]

In original concept art for the game, Big Al was planned to be one of the components of one of the Beetleworx enemies in the game but was later scrapped.

Trivia[]

  • The skeleton of one of the Disneyland Big Al figures was recycled into the Oogie Boogie animatronic featured in Haunted Mansion Holiday.
  • A Big Al figurine appears in the memory monster in the third segment of The Wonderful Spring of Mickey Mouse.
  • Big Al's character bio for the Country Bear Musical Jamboree takes inspiration from Liver Lip McGrowl's original bio from the 1972 Country Bear Jamboree record.

Gallery[]

Wiki
The Disney Wiki has a collection of images and media related to Big Al/Gallery.

References[]

v - e - d
The Country Bears logo
Media
Film: The Country Bears (soundtrack)

Books: Big Albert Moves In

Disney Parks
Country Bear JamboreeCountry Bear Vacation HoedownCountry Bear Christmas SpecialCountry Bear Musical Jamboree
Characters
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Movie: Beary BarringtonTed BedderheadFred BedderheadZeb ZooberTennessee O'NealReed ThimpleRoadieOfficer Hamm and Officer CheetsNorbert BarringtonMrs. BarringtonDexter BarringtonRip Hollard

Locations
Country Bear Hall
Songs
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Movie: Kick It Into GearThe Kid In You


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DuckTales (2017): Scrooge McDuckHuey, Dewey, and LouieWebby Vanderquack
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UniBEARsity:
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Enchanted: Giselle
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Oliver & Company: Oliver
Raya and the Last Dragon: RayaSisu
Twisted Wonderland: Grim
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Pixar
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A Bug's Life: FlikDotHeimlich
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Finding Nemo: NemoDoryMarlinCrushBruceDestinyBaileyHankSquirtNigelGillSheldonPearlDarlaCharlieJenny
WALL-E: WALL-EEVE
Ratatouille: RemyLinguini
Up: Carl FredricksenDugKevinRussell
Brave: Merida
Inside Out: JoySadnessAngerDisgustFearBing Bong
The Good Dinosaur: Arlo
Coco (film): MiguelHéctorImelda
Onward: Ian LightfootBarley Lightfoot
Soul: Joe22
Luca: Luca
Turning Red: Mei
Lightyear: Sox
Luxo, Jr.: Luxo, Jr.

Disney Parks
MonorailWalter E. DisneyDumboMad Tea PartySplash MountainAstro OrbiterMatterhorn BobsledsThe Haunted MansionAlbertEnchanted Tiki RoomOrange BirdPirates of the CaribbeanJungle CruiseBig AlBonnie BearTower of Terror
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